Energy Efficiency

Battery Rebate Offer

Sunshine Coast Battery Rebate Offer

Considering a battery storage solution for your home? There is currently a QLD government rebate for batteries available. You can learn more about the program by checking out the video below, or use the following links to learn more:

  1. Check your eligibility, learn more and apply: https://bit.ly/3wu6y2I
  2. Discuss with our team to learn more

Air-Conditioner Energy Optimisation

Air-Conditioning Solutions – Noosa & Surrounding Suburbs

On the Sunshine Coast, Air-Conditioners are the most popular solution to keep living and working conditions bearable, especially during the summer heat. In this exciting article, we take a look at how to optimise AC usage to make sure we’re getting the most chill for the lowest cost and energy usage. If you’re interested in an air-conditioner solution for your home or business, don’t hesitate to contact our team – we’re experienced with all aspects of air-conditioning and service Noosa and surrounding suburbs on the Sunshine Coast. 

Reducing Air-Conditioning Running Costs with Solar

Using solar power to run your air-conditioner is a long-term solution that can help to reduce costs in the long-term. Over time, a key benefits is being able to run your appliances during the day without paying for power from the grid. Meanwhile, if you already have solar, it’s important to maximise solar power usage for your AC (as opposed to power from the grid). An example might be cooling down your rooms before the evening comes – instead of waiting until it’s dark, when you will need to use power from the grid.

Using Optimal AC Modes

AC units have a wide variety of modes and on a hot day it can be tempting to hit ‘Siberia’. However, launching into the coldest and most powerful mode is not the most efficient way to use your air-conditioner. Economy modes optimise the way the air-conditioner works to get a great result without redlining power usage. For example, Daikin’s Econo Mode [SRC: Daikin ] prevents excessive cooling and only uses 70% of the appliance’s capacity. This achieves cooling without wasting electricity.

Air-Conditioning Solutions – Noosa & Surrounding Suburbs

Awareness of Modern Features

If you’re looking to purchase an air-conditioner, it’s important to come at it from an energy-efficiency point of view. Pay attention to your prospective machine’s features. For example, some Daikin split systems come with ‘Intelligent Eye’, which monitors whether a room is being used, and adjusts the AC delivery to suit usage. 

Awareness of Ratings

For new air-conditioners, pay attention to energy rating labels. These give an indication of both energy efficiency and energy consumption, helping you to appreciate how a specific appliance compares to its peers.

Daikin Split Systems – a Popular Solution

Use the Right Air-Conditioner

While there are many different types of air-conditioners, some are more energy-efficient than others, depending on the type of premises you are cooling. For cooling bedrooms and larger rooms, small, portable air-conditioning solutions are generally the least energy efficient appliances. Split systems are the recommended solution in most cases, since they are more energy efficient, and can achieve and sustain comparable cooling without requiring as much power. However, they do cost more upfront and they’re not portable. 

Optimising Usage

An important step towards optimising your air-conditioning is to only cool the required rooms, and for these rooms to be sealed from the outside. If you’re cooling the entire house, and all of the doors and windows are open, you might as well just throw your wallet out the window – which won’t be a problem, since the window is already open. Using air-conditioners minimally and within sealed rooms is effective an effective way to cool the home that won’t require the AC to use its full power. 

In Conclusion

Like any appliance, air-conditioners can and should be optimised. With AC, this process starts right at the beginning – selecting an appropriate system for your home – and then operating the system in an efficient manner. If you’d like to know more about AC on the Sunshine Coast, contact our team – we are here to assist.

Avoid this Obvious Solar Mistake

Solar power provides homeowners with a fabulous source of electrical energy. Nowhere is this truer than on the Sunshine Coast, where we enjoy beautiful sunny conditions for most of the year along with a fantastic natural environment. 

This article discusses optimising your solar solution – in particular, ensuring your high-use appliances are using solar energy and not power from the grid. If you’re making this mistake, don’t worry – you’re not alone. Let’s check it out.  

Not Maximising Your Usage of Solar Production

One of the primary goals of solar installations is to ensure that you are making the most of your solar power. For solar systems (with no battery), that means using power as much as possible during the day – when the sun is shining.

We install a range of solar battery solutions, including Enphase

To maximise the benefit of your solar system, it is important to adjust your energy consumption where possible to ensure that you are using the energy you produce, rather than purchasing from your energy retailer.

Examples:

  • Run swimming pools between the house of 10am-3pm
  • Use household appliances (dishwashers, washing machines, clothes dryers if you must) during the day where possible

One of the largest users of power in the home is the hot water system – electric hot water systems account for approximately a quarter of your electricity bill. [SRC: energyrating.gov.au ]

To make the most of your solar, it’s essential to make sure your hot water system is heating during the day, and using solar power. If it’s heating at night, it will not be using your solar energy (unless you have a battery) and will be drawing power from the grid, causing unnecessary costs.

Part of our service is to optimise electrical configurations.. while this might sound obvious to you, but we have seen quite a few homes where this problem is happening. If you’re going to the effort of collecting solar energy, it only makes sense to maximise it!

The Solution – Install a Timer

The solution is to install a timer on your hot water system that will ensure it only operates during peak solar collection times (during the middle of the day). Having a solar system in place is a significant step, but it’s only one part of the solution. The other part is optimising your home to make the most of solar power.

Get Assistance

If you don’t know when your hot water system is heating or need help organising a timer for your hot water system, or would like further information about optimising your home or business, please contact our team.

Reasons for Electrification

In this article, we examine the main reasons behind Electrification – a proactive movement to change the way we collect and use energy. While environmental concerns are a major factor driving Electrification, we also look at other reasons that include energy independence, energy efficiency, technological innovation, economical benefits, and health benefits. Let’s take a look.

Environmental Reasons

Australia has a goal to reach Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. [SRC: dcceew.gov.au] The goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions comes from the relationship between greenhouse gases and global warming. [SRC: bom.gov.au]

Electrification Solutions: Local, National, Global

As greenhouse gases increase in the atmosphere, they have the effect of trapping heat which causes the earth to warm up. About 90 per cent of the world’s carbon emissions comes from the burning of fossil fuels – mainly for electricity, heat and transport. [SRC: csiro.au]

Electrification is all about replacing fossil-fuelled power sources with clean, renewable energy, with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and global warming. There are also other factors involved in global warming, such as land clearing / land usage. However, Electrification seeks to make a difference in the large percentage of emissions associated with burning fossil fuels.

Noosa Solar Solutions

Energy Independence

Another important goal of Electrification is energy independence – becoming less reliant on electrical providers, the global energy situation and energy price changes. As long as the sun is shining, with rooftop solar in place, a home can generate and (with a battery) store energy independently of changes that might otherwise affect power supply or pricing. 

Energy Efficiency

The optimisation of energy use is another objective of Electrification. Towards this goal, Electrification involves processes of measuring and monitoring energy usage in order to determine the best way forward. Armed with this evidence, consumers can make small but significant improvements in the amount of energy they use and the associated costs for their energy. By minimising energy use and maximising outcomes, greater efficiency can be attained which on a large scale improves the overall energy usage footprint.

Technological Innovation

Energy collection and usage technology is undergoing a rapid evolution. While solar has been around for decades, new solar innovations are producing different and better ways of capturing and integrating solar energy into homes and businesses. Most importantly, prices are always improving, especially on technology such as batteries which are essential for an independent energy solution.

Economical Reasons

Energy is critical for all Australian households, and in the long term, there is always a strong imperative to utilise processes which make sense financially. Electrification involves initial investment and a changed approach, towards the goal of achieving better outcomes financially over the longer term.

Health Reasons

The health reasons for the Electrification switch are mainly in relation to atmospheric changes. There is the primary reason to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and global warming. There is also the matter of air quality. For example, with EVs replacing internal combustion engines on the roads, vehicle emissions will be reduced. Furthermore, by taking gas out of homes for cooking, health and emissions risks are reduced. [SRC: abc.net.au]

Why it Matters What We Do at Home

In our day-to-day lives, the non-renewable energy sources we use produce a large amount (42%) of Australian greenhouse gases. [SRC: Rewiring Australia ] These types of machines include: petrol cars, gas heaters, gas hot water and gas stoves, and fossil-fuel power plants supplying network electricity. The type of energy we use, and the machines we use, affect our carbon footprint. Converting these fossil-fuelled machines to electrical versions, and powering them from renewable energy sources is the primary goal of Electrification.

Learn more about how to make Electrification happen on this page.

More Information

Moving into the Future

The shift to a net-zero emissions future will require a large technological shift in Australia. We are here to support this shift with energy solutions for homes and businesses in and around Noosa on the Sunshine Coast. Contact our team to discuss a solution for your home or business today.

Energy Management Solutions

To make sure your home or business is energy efficient, it’s essential to have the capability of monitoring energy usage in real time. Whereas in the not-too-distant past we needed to rely on quarterly reports from energy providers, there is now a wide range of technology available to help consumers understand how they are using energy and how that usage can be optimised. 

How to Monitor Energy at Home

Energy usage can be monitored by the installation of monitoring technology between your incoming power source and your appliances. This is especially important for solar installations, since generating your own energy only makes sense if you are optimising the usage of the energy you are collecting.

*Note – all of our solar solutions come with an energy monitoring app so you can track and manage your energy. Learn more about our solar solutions here.

To give you an idea, here are some screenshots that come from our Enphase solar installation at Noosa Electric Co HQ at Noosaville:

Diagram #1

Diagram #1 Notes: This was an overcast day. This day began with the necessity to draw power from the grid [a] before the solar collection picked up [b]. Working with solar power means an increased awareness of weather and solar collection to optimise your power configuration in real-time. Towards the end of the day, solar collection reduced again and a combination of grid and solar power was utilised.

Diagram #2

Diagram #2 Notes: This day also began with overcast weather. However, grid power was rapidly overtaken by solar power. The uneven shape of this graph indicates solar power was coming and going through the day, due to overcast conditions. However, sufficient solar power was collected through most of the day to power our office and export some back to the grid as well. 

Diagram #3

Diagram #3 Notes: This day began with rain. After the weather cleared, the rest of the day is in a perfect “football” shape, indicating great solar collection and export to the grid. You can see where our EV was charged later in the day, an event totally covered by solar power. It’s important to ensure this type of major event is covered by solar power.

Diagram #4

Diagram #4 Notes: This is a perfect day of solar energy collection. We did need to use grid energy at the beginning of the day, but that’s because we started work before the sun came  up. After this period we enjoyed great solar collection with EV charging being undertaken through most of the day. 

Diagram #5

Diagram #4 Notes: This is a perfect day of solar collection. This was a Sunday, so we weren’t using any energy today (apart from the bare minimum to keep things ticking along). Most of this energy was exported back to the grid. 

In Conclusion

Solar energy is a fabulous way to collect energy independently, especially on the Sunshine Coast where we have an abundance of sunlight all year round. Making the most of solar energy requires a solar solution and energy management and optimisation. For assistance with your solar solution, please contact our team – we are here to assist.

Air-Conditioner Features

Air-Conditioning Features
Air-Conditioning Features

Air-Conditioners come in a variety of styles and capabilities. In this brief article, we look at important features that you should be aware of when reviewing a new air-conditioner for your home or business. This will help you make an informed decision and select an air-conditioner that is suitable for your needs. For all air-conditioning sales, installation, repair and servicing on the northern Sunshine Coast, please contact our team. We provide a complete air-conditioner service, in addition to being approved warranty-repairers for major brands.

Energy Efficiency

Choosing efficient appliances is important for the environment and the back pocket. Depending on the climate zone, heating and/or cooling can account for 20% to 50% of energy used in Australian homes. [energy.gov.au] That’s quite a lot when you think about tit. The best way to understand the energy-efficiency of an air-conditioner is to evaluate the mandatory energy rating label on the box:

Energy Rating Labels

These labels give immediate insight into the energy-rating of the appliance, and can help you to evaluate the running costs of your air-conditioner in conjunction with the other features it offers.

More Stars on the Label Means:

  1. More Energy Efficiency
  2. Lower Power Bills
  3. Less Damage to the Environment
Air-Conditioning Features

Refrigerant Type: R-32

The type of refrigerant used by an air-conditioner has an impact on both operational efficiency and environmental impact. Air-conditioners heat or cool the room by transferring heat via refrigerant. R-32 is a refrigerant used increasingly as the best commercially available option. It can reduce electricity consumption by approximately 10%, and has a lower environmental impact. [daikin.com]

Learn More:

Cooling & Reverse Cycle

An important choice to make up front is whether your air-conditioner will be cooling, or reverse-cycle. Here is the difference:

Cooling: This means that the air-conditioner only cools the air.

Reverse Cycle: The air-conditioner can cool and heat the air.

If you’re on the Sunshine Coast and thinking, “I only need to keep cool in summer!”, then please don’t forget that our winters can be pretty chilly. A reverse-cycle air-conditioner is a great way to combat the winter cold, as well as keep you warm in summer.

What’s the Difference Between a Split System & a Reverse-Cycle Air-Conditioner?

These are 2 totally different things. A split system is a type of air-conditioner configuration, and gets its name from the fact that it is made up of two separate components, one inside and one outside. You can read more about split systems here. Reverse-cycle, on the other hand, refers to an air-conditioner mode where the internal air is heated, not cooled. In other words, you can have a split system air-conditioner with a reverse cycle feature.

Air Quality

Air quality is an important, but often overlooked issue, which can be addressed by the right type of air-conditioner. Most known for their abilities to cool or heat rooms, some air-conditioners can also help address air quality, and lessen the impact of related issues including respiratory conditions, allergic episodes, headaches, skin issues, strange smells, and mould growth. To best understand the air-quality capabilities of your prospective air-conditioner, check for options such as filtration, mould-proof operation, auto-cleaning, odour decomposition and bacteria deactivation. Air-conditioners can do much more than simply heat and cool your rooms!

Learn More:

Connectivity

Appliances are getting smarter and air-conditioners are no exception. While the standard has always been operation via remote control, some AC units can now be operated by app on your phone or via smart home devices such as Google Home. In addition to this type of capability for new units, some brands also sell retro-fitting kits which enables this type of technology to be applied to older units. An example of this is the Fujitsu anywAIR technology Wi-Fi device.

Noise Reduction

Coming to terms with the noise levels associated with air-conditioners is important. Features such as Quiet Operation (Daikin) or Low Noise Mode (Fujitsu) can produce whisper-quiet AC under certain operational parameters. It’s important to understand that air-conditioner noise may be internal or external, depending on the type of air-conditioning unit you’re running and how it is being used. You need to consider both – you may not be able to hear your outdoor unit, but your neighbours may!

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Humidity Reduction: Dry Mode

If you lived on the Sunshine Coast during the first 4 months of 2022, you may be familiar with the problems associated with mould. Following a particularly rainy period during this time, mould growth was abundant as a result of humidity and a lack of sunshine. Dry mode is one option which is useful for battling mould, and comes as standard on many modern air-conditioners. This mode de-humidifies the room, and makes conditions less favourable for mould growth. In addition, it can be used as a more economical cooling method on days when high humidity is causing discomfort.

Learn More:

Rust Prevention

Rust prevention is an important consideration on the Sunshine Coast due to proximity to the ocean. For outdoor electrical units such as air-conditioning condensers, the elements can take a toll. Corrosion-resistance treatments are included in some air-conditioner models. We can also apply a rust-prevention application which will help protect your air-conditioner from the elements. Talk to our team to find out more information.

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