How to Track Your Energy Usage

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Updated 10/05/2024
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Written by

Luke Carlino

Updated 10/05/2024

What changed?

Updated with expanded content, new sourcing, table
Our aim is to help you make better informed decisions. That’s why iSelect’s content is produced in accordance with our fact-checking and editorial guidelines.

Find out more about how we make money.

View our Privacy Policy.

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How can I track my energy usage?
Why should I track my energy usage?
How can smart meters help?
How can energy monitoring apps help?
How can energy usage monitors help?
Ten strategies that can help reduce energy usage
Where can I find and compare energy plans?

Slashing your energy bills shouldn’t require hours of research or a degree in jargon. In fact, tracking how much energy you use (and implementing some simple strategies) might just be enough to make your energy bill a lot more manageable.

How can I track my energy usage? 

There are a few different ways you can track your energy usage, many of which you can do for free! 

Smart meters 

Across Australia, smart meters are becoming the norm. They’re different to old-style meters as they are more accurate, collecting your electricity usage data in practically real-time. You can then use a web portal, such as through your Electricity Retailer’s site, to see it all laid out. If you have a solar power system, you can even see how much solar power you’re using compared to main electricity. You might also be able to set up an alert from your smart meter if you’re using lots of electricity. 

Energy apps and monitors 

You can also make use of apps and home display monitors using this data from your smart meter and more.  

Many Energy Retailers have their own apps that let you manage your account, like paying for bills. But did you know these can also have energy usage tracking features? They can make it easy to see your electricity and gas stats in hourly, monthly and billing cycle periods. You could even dig into your usage patterns to get a more detailed view of your energy consumption. If you haven’t already, you might want to download your Energy Retailer’s app and have a play. 

If you’re looking to reduce your screen time along with your energy consumption, you could instead look at different home display monitors. These wirelessly connect to your smart meter and show you hourly, daily and monthly electricity usage. For Victorians, you might even be able to get one installed with a government discount. 

Plug-in meters and calculators 

If you’re not so fussed about getting the exact stats on your energy usage but want to drill down into how your different appliances consume energy, there’s options for you too.  

You could start with a simple plug-in meter — you can pick these up for as little as $201NSW Government – Discover what’s using the most energy — and see exactly how much electricity a connected appliance uses and costs you, even in standby mode. Using this little tool, you could check if it’s living up to any energy-saving claims or if it’s starting to struggle and may need to be replaced. 

Alternatively, you can use the Energy Rating Calculator to work out approximately how much different appliances would cost to run. With a database of almost 19,000 products,2Australian Government – Energy Rating Calculator it could be a handy tool if you’re looking to upgrade or replace appliances. 

Why should I track my energy usage? 

Keeping tabs on your energy usage isn’t just a good habit—it’s a way to save some serious cash on your gas and electricity bills. Knowledge is power, and in this case, it’s potentially power-saving.  

If you’re aware that tweaking your daily routine or adjusting your energy usage patterns can lead to a cheaper energy bill, wouldn’t you want to give it a shot? 

Tracking your electricity usage to understand your habits is like shining a spotlight on where your money is going, and why: 

  • Ever wonder how much that air conditioning, electric hot water heater, or prolonged lighting sessions impact your bill? Tracking helps you see the real deal, encouraging you to be a bit more conscientious about flicking the switch off. 
  • Got solar panels doing their thing on your rooftop? Monitoring your energy usage is your ticket to maximising the benefits of that sweet solar power. It’s like having a personal energy efficiency coach.
  • Share the electricity gospel with your family. Energy tracking data provides a clear view of your usage and its cost, helping everyone understand just how much power (and money) goes down the drain. 

Armed with this info, you’re in the driver’s seat to make meaningful behavioural changes. Want to significantly slash your energy consumption and make those bills less of a wallet-killer? Energy monitoring gives you the insight needed to make it happen. 

The Best Ways to Track Your Energy Usage 

Use an Energy
Monitoring App

Make Note of Your
Energy Use Habits/Times

Use a Smart
Meter

Identify Power-Hungry
Appliances

How can smart meters help? 

Smart Meters are a technological marvel that can change the way you interact with your electricity consumption. Say goodbye to the clunky old electricity meter of yesteryear and welcome the smart meter, armed with digital prowess. This upgrade provides detailed insights into how and when you’re using electricity.  

In many states and territories, smart meters are the only option for new builds or if your old meter has gone kaput. You may also be able to request an upgrade to a smart meter. 

Smart meters give you greater control over your energy accounts, ensuring you’re billed based on actual, real-time data. If you have a solar system and battery storage, smart meters provide access to information that helps you fine-tune your electricity management, making your home more energy efficient. 

No more meter readings or supply connections/disconnections either! Smart meters leverage remote services, saving you from the hassle of onsite visits. Smart meters will record your electricity usage in 30-minute intervals. Unlike their outdated counterparts, these smart devices don’t wait for someone to swing by and manually collect your data. They autonomously transmit this valuable information to your electricity retailer using wireless networks. 

How can energy monitoring apps help? 

Energy monitoring apps are very helpful when it comes to efficient energy management. Here’s a breakdown of how these apps can work wonders for you: 

Real-time insights 

An intuitive Energy Monitoring System operates in real-time, efficiently collecting and assessing data. This means you can effortlessly keep tabs on your electricity usage from the comfort of your digital domain. The beauty lies in identifying unnecessary energy consumption, paving the way for enhanced energy efficiency. 

Spot abnormalities and take immediate action 

With the power of real-time energy data, energy monitoring apps become your vigilant watchdogs. Imagine spotting anomalies like unnecessary heating or lighting thanks to a quick real-time alert preventing wastage of both money and energy.  

Measure results and form new strategies 

Your energy monitoring app helps you establish your baseline usage, and having this data readily available empowers you to make informed, data-driven decisions.  

In essence, energy monitoring apps aren’t just about tracking usage, they’re strategic tools that empower you to be more efficient, cost-effective, and environmentally conscious. They’re your eyes and ears in energy consumption, ensuring you stay in control and ahead of the game! 

How can energy usage monitors help? 

An Energy Monitoring System is like having a high-tech detective for your energy usage. This nifty setup keeps track of how much energy you’re using, whether it’s just one room or your entire home. It’s kind of like having a crystal ball that shows you exactly how much electricity, water, and gas you’re using at any given moment. This helps you pinpoint unnecessary energy consumption and boosts your overall energy efficiency. 

Ten strategies that can help reduce energy usage 

  1. It’s as simple as flicking a switch! Turn off lights and electrical gadgets when you’re not using them. It’s an instant energy saver.
  2. Say goodbye to old-school bulbs and hello to LED! They use less energy and last longer, making your energy bill and the environment smile.
  3. Keep the heat in and the cold out (or vice versa) by shutting doors and drawing curtains. It’s a quick fix to maintain the right temperature without heating or cooling systems. 
  4. Use cold water for washing, hang clothes to dry when possible, and make sure your appliances are energy-efficient to cut down on power usage. 
  5.  Understand how your home consumes energy. Identify and fix energy-hungry areas to make your living space more efficient. 
  6. Use lids on pots, match pot size to the burner, and consider energy-efficient appliances. Little tweaks in the kitchen can add up to energy savings. 
  7. Keep a handle on your thermostat. Set it to a comfortable but not excessive temperature, and when possible, use fans or open windows for natural ventilation instead of always relying on heating or cooling systems. 
  8. Regularly check and compare energy plans to ensure you’re getting the best deal. It’s a simple way to keep more money in your pocket. 
  9. Give your home an extra layer of coziness by insulating the roof. It helps maintain a stable temperature inside, reducing the need for constant heating or cooling. 
  10. Let the sun work for you! Consider solar panels to harness clean, renewable energy and save on electricity bills in the long run. 

Where can I find and compare energy plans? 

Tracking your energy usage can be a big help when it comes to saving on gas and electricity. However, you might be able to find a cheaper energy plan by comparing providers. 

iSelect has you covered here. We’ve got a handy energy comparison tool that makes switching providers a breeze. Alternatively, if you prefer a personal touch, you can give us a ring on 13 19 20 and our energy experts will help you compare your options and run you through the switching process. 

If you’re curious about the nitty-gritty or want to check out the full scoop on our website, we’ve got all the details waiting for you there.  

Get started on comparing energy plans today!

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iSelect does not compare all energy providers or plans in the market. The availability of plans may change from time to time, depending on who iSelect’s providers are and what plans they make available to iSelect. Not all plans made available from iSelect providers may be compared by iSelect either due to commercial arrangements, area or availability, so not all plans or providers compared by iSelect will be available to all customers. Some plans and special offers are available only from iSelect’s contact centre or website. Energy plans are available only for properties located in eligible areas of Victoria, New South Wales, South East Queensland, South Australia and ACT. Click here to view iSelect’s range of providers.