Expert energy tips to curb bill shock

·2-min read

As the nation's energy chaos leaves Australians facing potential bill shock, the Clean Energy Council has offered some tips to keep future costs down.

Using electric blankets to keep warm rather than heating a whole room, switching to a greener hot water system and installing solar panels is among the advice aimed at reducing Aussies' energy outlay.

The group of experts and industry professionals, who are speaking in Sydney next month at the Energy Next conference, also offer tips to businesses.

This includes boosting maintenance, improving insulation and collecting more data in order to better understand energy usage.

The tips come as Australia's energy market grapples with a perfect storm of high demand and reduced load, with the regulator forced to take over the nation's power grid last week to guarantee supply.

Federal Labor blamed a decade of policy inertia under the previous coalition government, including a failure to begin leading the network away from fossil fuels.

But experts also offered Canberra some advice, including co-hosting new renewable energy generation and replacing old, inefficient systems.

Australian National University researcher Dr Kathryn Lucas-Healey said replacing expensive-to-run systems was not "innovative or exciting" but should be the first thing considered and would require help from government, landlords and industry.

Matt Stubbs, director of renewable energy specialist Profergy, said households should "bite the bullet" and get an electric vehicle, while businesses should be monitoring their solar energy use to find ways to be more efficient.

Households should also look at switching to a heat-pump hot water system.

Power-hungry appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers should only be running during the middle of the day, University of Technology Sydney research principal Dr Scott Dwyer said, while Monash University researcher Dr Chang Wang recommended using electric blankets to heat the body rather than aircon to warm a whole space.

Another tip was to use solar power during the day and switch to a battery system at night.

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