Here’s how to save money on all your appliances during the warmer months 11



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Now’s the time of year all our power bills start going up – we use our air con more, we have guests so we use the dishwasher and washing machine more, we need to dry clothes in the dryer because it rains more… It seems like it’s unavoidable!

According to Origin, the average Australian home contains 67 household appliances.

Luckily there are some simple tricks you may not have thought of to minimise your energy costs.

Washing machine

This is one thing we can’t avoid doing – laundry is a necessity! But we can use our washing machines in more efficient ways. Firstly, make sure your machine is the right size for your needs. If you only need it to wash two peoples’ clothes, a small machine is best.

How to save energy:

  • Use cold water cycles
  • Always wash a full load
  • Always adjust the water level if your wash is less than full
  • Soak stains before washing
  • Plan your washes ahead
  • Keep your machine in good working order and clean it every six months using these tips.


It goes without saying but the most efficient, cost friendly way to dry your clothes is to hang them on the line. But when the weather gets hot, it is also storm season and not every day is perfect for hanging out clothes.

If you do decide to use a clothes dryer, here’s how to use it more efficiently:

  • Clean the lint screen between uses – Keeping your lint screen clean is one of the best ways to ensure that your dryer is working efficiently
  • Use a lower heat setting such as delicates or permanent press
  • Use the moisture sensor setting (if possible)– This setting will tell your dryer to use its built in moisture sensor in order for it to determine when it needs to turn off.
  • Dry for less than 40 minutes
  • Clean it every six months using these tips.


We use our fridges every single day, but how often do we stop and think about how we can be making it one of our more efficient appliances?

Here are some tips:

  • Keep it away from heat, like the oven because it will work harder if it is
  • If your fridge is 10 years old or more, than you should defrost when the ice builds up more than 63mm in the freezer. If it gets too frequently built up, considering a newer, more efficient model.
  • Set your fridge to a constant temperature of 1.6 degrees.
  • Cover all food – When you leave food uncovered the moisture will be absorbed into the air and this will then make the compressor work harder to remove it. Another reason why you should cover all your food is to prevent the smells of other foods mixing together.
  • Cool food before refrigerating – Hot foods, like soup needs to be cooled before entering the fridge (cool for 10 mins but be aware that bacteria does not start to grow). The reason is simple, the fridge will have to work harder to cool it down so by letting the majority of heat escape, it will allow the fridge to work as normal.
  • Don’t pack it full – the air needs to circulate.

More tips/explanations here.


Dishwashers are so convenient, but you need to be clever about how you use them. Did you know that most of the energy used in your dishwasher is used to heat the water?

Save money on your power bill by:

  • Only run a full load – if you have less, hand wash.
  • Use the economy cycle to use less water
  • Scrape excess food scraps into the bin.
  • Clean the dishwasher regularly using these tips.


Ovens are great for baking and grilling but they use a whole lot of energy. They’re an absolute necessity so we do need to use them, it’s just how we do it that will save money.

Here are some tips:

  • Put more than one thing in the oven at once – utilise those racks!
  • If you’re baking something small, use a electric countertop convection oven instead
  • Don’t open the door while cooking
  • Use glass or ceramic baking dishes as they can retain heat.
  • Start from fresh or thawed, not frozen
  • Clean it using this three-ingredient oven cleaner
  • Naturally clean it with these tips

Do you have any other tips to add?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Winter is the time when our power bills go up! Summer here is great for laundry drying on the line or inside on a clothes horse if storms happen, we often use a bbq, we use the aircon but only when completely necessary and not nearly as much as heating in winter. Everything else is much the same. I don’t agree. Our power bill does a plummet in Spring/ Summer.

    3 REPLY
  2. Got it wrong, gets cheaper from now until next April. I got rid of the aircons, we weren’t using them and I put extra insulation in the roof space. Winter times in Orange are cold so heating is mandatory.

  3. I would like in my lifetime to have John Lennon’s imagine as the world anthem lets share and see if we can

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