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How much energy does the average home use?
Households in some suburbs consume over twice the electricity of others, while certain climates are just better for your energy bill.
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Where you live has a serious impact on your energy bills, with some states and climates having far lower power usage each year than others. For the most part, residents of Tasmania consume the most electricity - especially in winter (which is probably due to the cooler temperature). On the other hand, Melbournians consume the least.
We've gone through all the data in the AER's 2020 Residential Energy Consumption Benchmarks report to give you an idea of how your consumption stacks up against others, and where you could move to lower it.
What is the average usage by state?
Consumption varies significantly by state, with Tasmanians using the most per year - 8,619kWh on average - especially on heating in the cold winter.
Victorians use almost half as much power annually as Tasmanians and have the lowest consumption at 4,615kWh.
What is the average usage in capital cities based on household size?
Larger households consume more energy, but just how much depends on the capital city and what climate it's located in. Residents of Hobart used the most power for each household member on average, while Melbourne residents used the least.
|Household size||Sydney usage (kWh)||Brisbane usage (kWh)||Adelaide usage (kWh)||Melbourne usage (kWh)||Canberra usage (kWh)||Hobart usage (kWh)|
Average usage in Sydney
Average usage in Adelaide
Average usage in Brisbane
Average usage in Melbourne
Average usage in Canberra
Average usage in Hobart
Case study: How energy usage changes within a city (Sydney)
The amount of energy households consume can depend on where you live, with some suburbs having more than twice the average power consumption than others. The average household size for each suburb is taken from the 2016 Census, while power use is taken from statistics published by New South Wales distributor Ausgrid.
How much energy do various appliances use?
Here's an idea of how much energy five common appliances in your house might use every day, and over the course of a year.
|Appliance||Power rating||Hourly usage||Yearly usage||Energy cost|
|Desktop computer||200W||200Wh||219kWh (3 hours per day)||$57|
|Electric oven||2,100W||2.1kWh||383kWh (30 minutes per day)||$100|
|Electric heater||2,400W||2.4kWh||864kWh (4 hours per day in winter)||$226|
|Washing machine||900W||900Wh||93.6kWh (2 hours per week)||$24|
How does the climate of where you live affect energy usage?
Australia is a huge continent with extremely diverse climates. The climate you live in affects your heating and cooling bills.
Warm, temperate areas like Sydney have low annual consumption (average of 5,154kWh), while cold areas like Hobart have very high consumption (7,229kWh average).
|1||High humidity summer, warm winter||Cairns, Townsville|
|2||Warm humid summer, mild winter||Rockhampton, Brisbane, Coffs Harbour|
|3||Hot dry summer, warm winter||Mt Isa, Western Downs, Longreach|
|4||Hot dry summer, cool winter||Dubbo, Whyalla, Mildura|
|5||Warm temperate||Urban Sydney, urban Adelaide|
|6||Mild temperate||Urban Melbourne, Adelaide Hills, Ulladulla|
|7||Cool temperate||Canberra, Hobart, Yarra Ranges|
|8||Alpine||Small sections of alpine Tasmania, and the Snowy Mountains|
What is the average usage by distributor?
What if you have solar?
Once again, the effect of solar on your power consumption depends largely on the climate you inhabit. Warm, temperate regions like Sydney or Adelaide saved the smallest amount of power with solar, while areas with hot dry summers and cool winters saved the most.
|Climate zone||Example towns/regions||Annual gap in power consumption between solar and no solar (kWh)|
|High humidity summer, warm winter||Cairns, Townsville||344|
|Warm humid summer, mild winter||Rockhampton, Brisbane, Coffs Harbour||392|
|Hot dry summer, cool winter||Dubbo, Whyalla, Mildura||1,129|
|Warm temperate||Urban Sydney, urban Adelaide||92|
|Cool temperate||Canberra, Hobart, Yarra Ranges||381|
|Climate zone||Solar PV||No Solar PV|
|CZ 1 and 3||5,784||6,128|
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