I wrote a post some months back about the introduction of the carbon tax and my monstrous winter electricity bill (which was close to $AUD1000. I was hoping my solar panels installed would help, but the next bill came and despite a drop which looking back on it was quite impressive, it wasn’t the raging success I was hoping my solar panels would be ($787.48, an approximately 23% reduction in my bill). Since the BIG bill I had done some work to reduce my energy use. I reduced the use of my nasty heaters and even some nights did not use them at all in my sub-zero room (yes I am exaggerating somewhat). I also was careful about the use of my appliances during peak times (not really reducing my use, just reducing peak energy demand from my home) and was even more careful turning off lights. Therefore the reduction which I can now clearly see, was not as much of a reduction in my bill as I was hoping for. Now, I have been in my home for less than a year, so did not have good data behind me as to what my normal usage would have been like in the same time last year without my solar panels. I have not been able to do a ‘like for like’ comparison.
So it was with some trepidation that I opened the electricity bill the last quarter and what awaited me?
This means that I have reduced my energy bill by as much as 83%!
I nearly started to do a ‘happy dance’. So why is this bill so much lower? Many reasons, but here are some:
• Summer – longer days, more exposure of my panels to the sun’s rays;
• No longer using my energy sapping heaters; and
• More vigilance about my off peak use and more clever use during sunny ‘solar’ days. So for example I try not to run many appliances at once even when the sun is shining on my panels. I still use the energy saving mode on my dishwasher and washing machine during days when I know my solar panels would be producing plentiful energy.
My bills this time was the same as my sister’s and she works all day, lives in a small studio and she has no kids and is pretty careful with her energy use also. Whereas I am in a house, with three adults (my father lives in my granny flat and has electric heating and cooking) and two children.
It will be interesting now to see what my winter bill looks like, but before that I think I will go an buy more energy efficient heaters and more winter woolies.