The Great Bill Shock of Winter, 2020

Not only are we in the thick of winter, but also a global pandemic which has rendered us to the confines of our homes. Here’s how to keep comfy while keeping the bills from skyrocketing. 

One day we may look back at this time and recall the ‘Great Bill Shock of Winter, 2020’. Not only are we in the thick of winter (one of the most energy-intensive times of the year), but also a global pandemic that has rendered us to the confines of our homes. 

As a result, you likely fall into one of two categories:

  1. A household without solar, hyperventilating into a brown paper bag over your latest energy bill
  2. A household with solar, noticing little-to-no change to your regular energy bill, because lucky for you – you’re powered by sunshine in daylight hours

These are unprecedented times and it’s important to remember that we’re not in ‘usual’ circumstances. For example, if you’re a household with a solar system designed for 20kWh of home energy usage, you might now be using 40kWh if you’re working from home every day. For most households, this situation won’t be permanent. But, if it is for you, you might consider increasing the size of your solar system. 

For those feeling the temporary blow of drastically increased energy usage, here are some simple and practical tips that can help you keep costs down:

  • Be smart with your curtains. If you have windows that let sunlight into the home, be sure to have the curtains open so that you can let that free heat into your home. When the sunlight is not coming through, close the curtains to keep the heat in and the room much more comfortable.
  • Only heat the rooms you’ll be using. Shut the doors off to other rooms to keep the heat in.
  • Draught-proof your home. Seal all the air leaks in crawl spaces and attics can save 25% on heating costs if done right!
  • Use an appropriately sized heater. A heater that is too big for the space wastes energy and money by oversupplying the room.
  • Get your temperature settings right. Set the temperature on your air-con between 18 and 20°C – don’t be tempted to crank it all the way up to 30°C!


Remember, there is light at the end of the tunnel! A solar system will always cushion you from the full blow of bill shock, but keep in mind that winter also presents the lowest period of solar production. As the days get warmer and the sun shines brighter, your solar system will produce more energy. 

In a nutshell – a global pandemic presenting in the dead of winter has been a disaster for household energy bills. If you’ve got solar, you’re far better off, but you might need to make some temporary changes to your lifestyle to avoid any unwelcome bill shock! 

Feel free to give us a call if you have any questions or need some advice. We are more than happy to walk you through your energy monitoring or provide recommendations on how you can keep your usage down. 

For more of our top tips on saving energy at home, check out this blog:

Alex Georgiou
Alex Georgiou

Alex is a home energy expert with experience across virtually every area of the industry, ranging from energy efficiency and smart home gear to the latest solar and battery technologies. As co-founder of ShineHub, he is responsible for delivering the best digital experience in the industry for customers as well as managing customer-facing communications.

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