Everyone’s worried about the cost  – and the availability – of electricity.  Bills are skyrocketing – and we may face blackouts.

So this winter, what appliances should you be switching off? You’ll be surprised 


Due to the fact that fridges operate 24 hours a day they use the most electricity of any home appliance. You can cut down your energy usage by choosing a fridge with a high energy rating and they tend to be more energy-efficient. A search on Harvey Norman’s website shows that the Hisense 483L PureFlat Bottom Mount Fridge – Black, has a six-star rating and retails for $1,699. This compares with the Miele 344L Bottom Mount Fridge which retails for $4,199 and has a 1.5-star rating. 

It is important to choose a fridge that is suitable for your needs because it can help you save money. For example, choosing a fridge that is too big means that you will waste energy that you don’t use.  If you don’t need a large fridge then it could be worth downsizing your fridge to save money.

It’s recommended that you keep a fridge out of direct sunlight and instead store it in a cooler place to help conserve energy. 

Comparison website Canstar Blue has published the average amount of energy a fridge uses annually based on its size.

  • 100-199 litres = 358KWH = $118.14
  • 200-299 litres = 410KWH = $135.30
  • 300-399 litres = 490KWH = $161.70
  • 400-499 litres = 495KWH = $163.35
  • 500-599 litres = 738KWH = $243.54
  • 600-699 litres = 1356KWH = $447.48


The average fridge costs approximately $82.50 per year to run based on data from Canstar.


Ovens can either be powered by gas or electricity and they are another appliance that you use everyday. When deciding whether or not to use gas or electricity you’ll need to consider your individual circumstances and what will offer you better value. The average electric oven could cost $800 a year to run if you use it for an hour a day. 

To maximise your energy efficiency you should use pots with lids and keep the oven door closed as much as possible. 

Washing machine

The most energy-efficient washing machine on Harvey Norman’s website is the Electrolux 9kg Front Load Washing Machine with SensorWash with a five-star rating. Whilst Harvey Norman’s website does not say how much energy the washing machine will use each year, the average 7.5kg washing machine costs $45 per year to run so you could expect to pay $54 to run a 9kg washing machine annually. 

Washing machines are similar to fridges where it’s important to select a washing machine based on your needs. A cold wash option will also help you conserve energy.


According to Finder, the average cost of a heater in Winter is $218 per household. That equates to a daily cost of $2.42. Not all heaters are created equal though, with panel heaters being the most cost-effective type of heater at a daily cost of $1.83 per day which is below the average for electric heaters. 

Convection heaters run on gas and you can expect to pay slightly more per day at $2.56.

Fan heaters are amongst the most expensive type of heater you can use with an average running cost of $197 in winter. Oil filled column heaters have a slightly lower operating cost at $184, panel heaters are $165.

Radiant bar heaters cost more at $251, radiant convection at $223 and tower heaters at $224 over winter. 

If you’re looking to save money then a panel heater is your best option with prices starting from $149 for an Omega Altise 1800W Panel Convection Heater – White at Harvey Norman.

Water heating

You can expect to pay around $970 to heat your water each year. Off-peak water can be cheaper however it would still cost $460 year on average according to research from Harvest Hot Water.


Canstar Blue has crunched the numbers and the annual cost to run your dryer will depend on how many loads you do each week. Canstar Blue has only given estimates with the actual cost depending on your location, energy retailer and the time of day that you use your dryer. 

It also depends on the type of dryer you use. A vented dryer will cost:

  • One load per week = $76.30
  • Three loads per week = $228.91
  • Five loads per week – $381.51
  • Seven loads per week = $534.12

A condenser dryer is a more cost-effective option:

  • One load per week = $50.13
  • Three loads per week = $150.39
  • Five loads per week = $250.65
  • Seven loads per week = $350.91

Home entertainment

Out of all the home entertainment appliances, a television uses the most power, with the average 50-inch television with a four-star rating costing $85.25 on your annual electricity bill.

How you can reduce your electricity bill

Aside from installing devices that allow you to monitor your electricity you can take the following steps:

  1. See what appliances use the most electricity in your home and find out what the energy consumption per quarter or annually is and work out how much you use them. See if you can reduce your consumption.
  2. Turn appliances off when you are not using them. This means completely turning them off rather than leaving them on standby.
  3. Turn lights off when you are not in the room or when you are out.
  4. Don’t leave air conditioning or your heater running all day or all night. Only use them when you are in the house and can directly benefit from them being on.
  5. Upgrade your appliances to those with a higher energy-efficiency star-rating.


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