The weather in Australia can get pretty hot during the summer months. Many Australians turn to air conditioners to keep their homes cool, but this comes with an added cost to the electricity bill. But exactly how much does it cost to use an air conditioner in your home, and how can you best optimize those costs? Keep reading to find out.
How Much Does It Cost To Use A Reverse Cycle Air Conditioner?
Using an assumed electricity usage charge of 35c/kWh, the average cost of using a reverse cycle air conditioner to keep a space cool is between $0.25 – $0.95 per hour. The variance in pricing depends on the size of the room being cooled. For instance, cooling a small room of about 24sqm would cost $0.25 – $0.35 per hour, while cooling a large room of about 50sqm would cost between $0.70 and $0.95 per hour. A medium sized room (36sqm) comes to about $0.36 – $0.70 per hour to run.
To get a better idea of the level of cost, it is a good idea to compare the cost of using a reverse cycle split air conditioner with the cost of other appliances in the home. For example, while an air conditioner in a medium-sized room may cost $0.60 per hour to run, using a dishwasher will cost $0.34 per hour and using a refrigerator will cost a mere $0.06 per hour of usage. With these comparisons, you can understand that using your air conditioner for six hours a day in the summer can easily add $300 to your monthly power bill.
How Do I Reduce The Costs of Using a Reverse Cycle Air Conditioner?
While air conditioning is expensive, there are ways that you can bring those costs down without losing out on the cool advantage.
One such way is to purchase a reverse cycle air conditioner with a high star rating. These days, air conditioners come rated from one to ten, and the higher the rating, the less energy the air conditioner consumes. For example, running a five-star air conditioner would cost about $2000 per year, while running a seven-star air conditioner would cost about $1612 per year. Of course, these costs may vary depending on the brand of air conditioner you buy.
If you already have an air conditioner, no need to go buy a new one. You can save costs by keeping your air conditioner at a specific temperature whenever in use, instead of allowing the “auto” feature to modulate the temperature. Recommended temperatures are 24°C in summer and 19°C in winter.
You can also reduce costs by keeping your home as shaded as possible during the hot days. Doing this reduces the heat absorbed by the air conditioner, in-turn reducing the energy expended. Other options are to use a fan in the cooler parts of the day, so as to reduce air conditioner usage and to ensure your air conditioner is always well maintained so that it remains as energy efficient as possible.