No one likes opening their mail to find an enormous gas bill, and we like paying these bills even less. Fortunately, there are ways we can help reduce our gas bill, most of which won’t cost us any more than what we already pay for our usage.
Ready to save money? Let’s go!
Top 12 tips to reduce your gas bill
1. Ask yourself: could my gas bill be wrong?
There’s a possibility you might’ve been charged the wrong amount on your gas bill; this can happen if your energy distributor is unable to read your meter, leaving your retailer to make an estimated reading to charge you for your usage.
If your gas bill is more than it should be, your retailer will often take the overcharged amount (usually if it’s less than $50) off your next bill. If the overcharged amount is more than $50, you may have the choice of deducting it from your next bill or having it refunded.
You should contact your retailer if you have a query about your gas bill. Alternatively, you can contact your state or territory’s energy ombudsman if you’re not able to resolve your query.
2. Find out why your gas bill went up and take action
Your gas bill might’ve unexpectedly risen for any number of reasons, like incorrect charges or because of:
- Seasonal changes: Difference in temperature throughout the year could have an impact on your gas bill, as the price of gas in winter and summer is different. You can find out more about the seasonal effect on energy bills on our all-seasons guide to saving on energy costs.
- Your house: If you’ve moved into an older house, you may find your bills increase due to its less-efficient structure; perhaps the house isn’t insulated, so you might want to follow Tip 11 and install proper insulation.
- Changes in your lifestyle: If you’ve recently moved in with a partner or friends, or you’ve started working from home, you might notice an increase to your usual gas usage. If this is the case, take a look through these tips and try to apply them to your household routine.
3. Stop preheating your oven
Gas ovens can reach cooking temperature fairly quickly, so preheating your oven isn’t always necessary.
What’s more, once your oven’s preheated, opening the door to put in your food lets out a lot of heat – defeating the purpose of preheating it in the first place! Try turning on the oven when your food’s ready to cook – it could save you money on your next gas bill.
4. Switch to a better energy plan
Of course, a great way to reduce your gas bill is to find a new energy plan that’s better suited to your needs and budget. You don’t have to be moving house to switch energy plans; you can switch at any time.
Finding and switching to a new energy plan is easy when you use our handy energy comparison service. Just enter a couple of details about yourself and your gas usage, and within minutes you’ll have a range of plans and providers to choose from. Simples!
5. Reduce your gas bill by bundling up
Is it really that cold, or is it just a little chilly?
Rather than pumping up the heating when the temperature drops only a few degrees, try putting on your socks and a cardie, and add a blanket or two to your bed at night. You’ll still feel cosy, and you won’t be spending extra dollars on your gas bill.
6. Make some washing and plumbing changes
Having a shower instead of a bath could save you on both water and heating, since showers generally use less water and, in turn, less heating; keeping your shower time short can also help. Try installing a low-flow showerhead and fix any leaking taps to help you save even more water and, ultimately, heating.
7. Turn off the gas now and then
For an easy way to reduce your gas bill, consider turning the gas off when you’re going to be away from home for a while. This way, your gas isn’t wasted by heating water that no one will use.
8. Adjust your thermostat (or purchase a new one)
Adjusting both your water heating and central heating thermostats could save you on your gas bill. By lowering both thermostats by just a few degrees, your heating systems won’t need as much gas to reach the new setting, and it’s likely you won’t notice the difference in water temperature.
If you want to save money on gas but don’t want to always manually adjust your thermostat, why not consider purchasing a programmable one? You’ll be able to set a schedule for your heating so it won’t use up gas when you’re away from home, asleep or otherwise not using it.
9. Maintain your system
As with any appliance and system, regular maintenance will keep your gas heating system running efficiently for longer. Organise a service on your heating system when it’s due and check your heater’s filters for built-up dirt or dust.
10. Insulate, seal and contain your home
Having proper insulation in your home can keep it both warm in the winter and cool in the summer, and it could cut your energy bills by up to half.i
Check for and seal up any gaps or cracks in your window sills or door frames that could be letting the heat out and the cold in.
You should also try to contain the heat to the areas of your home you’d like heated by shutting doors to rooms that don’t need to be heated, like the laundry or bathroom. This keeps your heating system from overworking to heat a larger area and warms the used rooms quicker, using less gas and reducing your bill.
11. Consider an on-demand hot water system
If you live in an apartment or small house, an on-demand gas hot water system may be the best cost and gas-efficient option for you. An on-demand system will only heat water when it’s needed as opposed to other, bigger hot water systems, which keep a supply of water constantly heated, using more gas in the process.
12. Consider a solar power and gas booster system
Those who live in bigger houses may find a solar-powered system with a gas booster a better option to save gas and money. The sun will heat up the water during the day so it’s ready for peak-time use in the evening and night. The gas booster is used as a backup when the sun isn’t warm enough. You can also use solar systems for swimming pool and spa heating.
You can find out more about solar energy on our understanding solar energy page, or you can learn more about renewable energy options in Australia and if renewable energy is right for you.