Cold winds, rain and plummeting temperatures; it’s official, winter is setting in across Australia and in a bid to stay warm, consumers are likely to increase their electricity usage by around 14 percent over the winter months1

Data from AGL Energy Ltd (AGL) has found that Australians use more electricity staying warm in winter (daily average 16.4 KWh during winter 2013) than they do staying cool in summer (daily average 14.3 KWh during summer 2013/2014).

Last winter, AGL customers in New South Wales consumed the most electricity of any state (18.4 KWh per day) with a quarterly average bill of $525. 

In Victoria, customers used around 13.9 KWh of electricity per day and the average quarterly winter bill was $460.  Victorian’s lower electricity usage is in part a reflection of the uptake of gas heating in the state, but Victoria also had a milder winter in 2013 than in past years2.  

Sitting midway were Queenslanders (17.2 KWh per day, with an average winter bill of $373) and South Australians (16.4 KWh per day with an average winter bill of $506).

AGL's General Manager of Marketing & Retail Sales, Mark Brownfield, said following a few simple tips can help you to keep your energy costs under control this winter.

“As the cold weather sets in, it’s only natural to want to turn up your heater to warm your home quickly. However, setting your heater’s thermostat to between 18°C and 20°C, rather than higher, will have a significant impact on your winter energy bill. Every 1°C higher can increase your heating costs by up to 10 percent3.  

“Another easy and affordable way to reduce your energy usage is to draught proof your home by sealing any cracks or gaps around doorways and windows. This stops the warm air from escaping and prevents the cold air from coming in. It also makes sense to only heat the rooms that you are using, rather than your whole house,” said Mr Brownfield.

Five ways to keep your energy costs under control this winter
 Tip  Ways to save
 1 Take it down a notch. Set your heater's thermostat to between 18°C and 20°C. Every 1°C higher could increase your heater’s running costs by up to 10 percent.
 2 If your heater has a timer, make a note of when people are normally home during the day and set it to activate only during these periods. By reducing the overall time your heater is running, you will reduce your energy consumption.
 3 Seal all leaks and save. Heat can escape through cracks around doors, windows, and electrical outlets. Checking for and sealing leaks could save up to 25 percent of your heating (and cooling bills). Draught proofing your home is one of the easiest and cheapest ways of lowering energy costs.
 4 Using rugs and carpets on slab floors can help retain heat in your home, increasing the effectiveness of your heating.
 5 Shut the door on wasted energy. Closing doors to rooms that don't need heating (like bathrooms and the laundry) can prevent up to 75 percent of heat loss.

AGL Appliances and Tradespeople offers a wide range of heating options, as well as expert advice to help you to find the right product for your home. AGL has a team of qualified plumbers and electricians, who can deliver, install and service your appliances. 

For more information contact AGL on 131 245.

About AGL

AGL is one of Australia's leading integrated renewable energy companies and is taking action toward creating a sustainable energy future for our investors, communities and customers. Drawing on 175 years of experience, AGL operates retail and merchant energy businesses, power generation assets and an upstream gas portfolio. AGL has one of Australia's largest retail energy and dual fuel customer bases. AGL has a diverse power generation portfolio including base, peaking and intermediate generation plants, spread across traditional thermal generation as well as renewable sources including hydro, wind, landfill gas and biomass. AGL is Australia's largest private owner and operator of renewable energy assets and is looking to further expand this position by exploring a suite of low emission and renewable energy generation development opportunities.


1 Australians in the National Energy Market (NEM) consume 14 percent more energy during the winter months than during summer months (Source: AGL)