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What to look for in an appliance when you’re buying a newbie

What to look for when buying new home appliances

13 Mar 2019
Chris - amaysim blogger


amaysim's Energy guru

Finding appliances that are both energy-efficient and affordable isn’t always easy. If you’re torn between tracking down budget-friendly products and trying to reduce your energy bill, here’s what to look for.

From fridges and microwaves to air-conditioners and clothes dryers, our households are filled with an abundance of appliances While our ancestors had to make do with washing their clothes by hand and sweltering through hot summers, we get to live in luxury thanks to technology.

But the comfort and convenience of modern appliances comes at a cost.

If you’re not careful, your household gadgets can end up taking a huge chunk out of your income.

Finding appliances that are both energy-efficient and affordable isn’t always easy. If you’re torn between tracking down budget-friendly products and trying to reduce your power bill, here’s what to look for.

Household Appliances

long-term affordability

Living in the moment is a great life philosophy, but it’s important to think ahead when searching for household appliances.

Just like you’d avoid buying a fuel-guzzling car, the same approach applies to anything that runs on electricity. Before purchasing a new appliance, always look into how much it’ll cost to operate. Items that use tons of energy could hurt your household budget down the track.

Even if you think you’ve found a great deal, don’t allow yourself to be blinded by a flashy new appliance. Thinking about how much it might cost you in the future could ultimately save you thousands of dollars.

Home appliances

features you actually need

Shopping for new gadgets can be exciting, but beware of impulse purchases. No matter how determined you are to stick to your budget, it’s easy to get carried away now that there are so many high-tech appliances to choose from.

Before you lose all self-control and start maxing out your credit cards, step away from the persuasive salesperson and think long and hard about your life choices. Do you really need a fridge that tells you when your food’s about to expire? Or a microwave that comes with a sonic steamer? We didn’t think so.

Avoid impulsive behaviour by asking to see the appliance’s priority features, including its:

  • Energy efficiency rating
  • Warranty
  • Power consumption

By concentrating on basic components, you won’t be as tempted to fall for fancy features.

quality over aesthetics

Prioritising looks over functionality probably isn’t the best idea if you want your new appliance to go the distance. Just because something’s pretty doesn’t make it energy-efficient, and having beautiful looking appliances will be cold comfort when your next power bill arrives.

Instead of buying an appliance just because it’s your favourite colour or has perfectly matching components, look for things like energy efficiency and overall quality.

Energy Efficiency

energy efficiency (even if it doesn’t come cheap)

Finding the least expensive appliance may sound like a good idea when you don’t have a ton of cash to splash – but cheap products aren’t always the best option. Energy-efficient appliances tend to be a little more expensive, but the purchase price doesn’t tell the whole story. Remember that running costs are just as important, especially if you’re buying an appliance you’ll use every day.

In Australia, most household appliances are rated according to their energy efficiency. Since efficient appliances use less electricity, they’re way cheaper to run. If your power bill has been getting out of hand, replacing any appliances you’ve had since the ‘90s with newer, more efficient models can make a huge difference to your energy costs.

While you’re looking for new appliances, you might also want to consider switching energy providers to see if you can make some extra savings.

Our electricity and gas plans include great value rates, no confusing discounts or lock-in contracts and the convenience of monthly billing to help you avoid bill-shock.

It might take a bit of shopping around to find an affordable appliance that can help you keep energy costs down, but persistence is key. And those savings will make your efforts worthwhile.


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winter energy

5 Ways to Reduce Winter Energy Usage

10 May 2020

Many of us watch our energy bills creep up during the peak of winter, but a warm home doesn’t have to go hand in hand with a massive power bill. These energy saving tips will help you discover how to save electricity in winter. Try our seasonal winter home energy saving tips and keep your energy bill manageable.

1. Stay old school, where possible

Being able to walk around your home without having to wear a lot of layers or carry a blanket is a wonderful luxury in winter. However, there’s a certain vintage charm to getting warm under a heavy blanket while the air outside your cosy blanket haven is still chilly.

Keeping things old school as much as you can, pulling out thermals, putting on socks, and cuddling up for warmth during a Netflix session, are some of our favourite power saving tips for winter.

Smart Home Devices

2. Go smart

Not the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about how to lower an electricity bill in winter, but smart devices can help you save heaps when it comes to your power bill.

If you use household heating, a programmable smart thermostat can save households up to $180 per year in heating and cooling costs, according to Energy Star. Some of these smart home devices can even be operated from smartphones, for when you just don’t want to leave the warmth of your blanket.

Who would have thought having an awesome home automation setup would bring your energy bill down!

Standby Power

3. Upgrade to energy efficient appliances

Just like choosing smart devices to save power, you can upgrade to energy-efficient appliances to save power too.

In Australia, most household appliances are rated according to their energy efficiency. Since efficient appliances use less electricity, they’re way cheaper to run. Of course, you don’t need to toss out your washing machine, dryer, fridge, microwave, and kettle just to save electricity in winter.

If you have an appliance that’s costing you a lot to run, it might actually save you money in the long run to buy a new, more efficient replacement.

Look up the energy ratings for all your big appliances (and small ones too if you can) and find any that could do with replacing.

4. Switch to energy-efficient light bulbs

Energy-efficient bulbs are a no-brainer when it comes to ways to save money on electricity in winter. In fact, you should use these bulbs throughout the year to keep your electricity bill down, no matter the season.

These efficient bulbs use less power to produce the same amount of light. They also last longer than traditional bulbs.

If you feel like splurging, check out smart bulbs, they can be controlled by your phone as well as being energy efficient, neat! The savings from swapping these bulbs alone aren't massive, but every little bit adds up when you know you’ll spend more power heating your home in winter.

5. Build up the washing pile

There’s no point in chucking on two jumpers and a pair of jeans into the washing machine during winter, how dirty could they really be? Before doing a load of washing or drying make sure you have a full basket.

It’s no secret that the washing machine and dryer chew up the most electricity in your house. Don’t let the chilly season increase your wash load because of the more layers of clothing being added to the basket.

Follow these simple tips on how to save electricity in winter and you should hopefully see some great results during the cold season.

Reducing your energy usage all year long will help you get in the mindset before June even comes around or if you want to be even more prepared for when summer rolls around.