01 March 2021

Eskom’s expected hefty rise in the price of electricity set for the 1st of April combined with that fact that most of us are housebound as we try to lessen the spread of the novel coronavirus makes right now the perfect time to start reducing your electricity consumption. Not only will this lower your electric bill, but it’ll also help minimise the occurrence of load shedding.

Below are a few easy ways to lower your electric bill before the Eskom price hikes kick in:

Lower your use of lights
A good place to start would be to change all your light bulbs from regular incandescent bulbs to LED lights, as these use between 75% – 90% less electricity, and they’re cheaper than regular bulbs. Remember to turn off your lights when you don’t need them. If it’s the middle of the day and the room is dark, open the curtains or blinds instead of turning on the lights. This small change of habit could make a big difference when regularly applied to how you consume electricity.

Unplug your appliances
Many appliances (including the tv, computer, microwave, printers, and scanners) use standby power which means that even if the appliance is not in use or is turned off, it still consumes electricity. Turning off each switch by the wall will lower electricity consumption. To minimise the hassle of this task, plug nearby appliances into one power strip (i.e. an extension cable with multiple sockets). This way, there’s only one socket you need to turn off at the wall rather than multiple.

Lower your use of your geyser
The geyser should be heated ideally between 55°C - 60°C to ensure hot water in the most energy-efficient way. Most people simply leave their geysers on to have access to hot water at any given time of the day. But a great way to reduce your electricity consumption would be to have a set schedule for the geyser or to set your geyser to an automatic timer. You could also invest in good insulation for your geyser to help maintain the heat during the times that it is switched off.

Lower how often you do laundry
It’s best to do a full load of washing, with cold water on the shortest cycle available and hang your laundry out rather than using a tumble dryer, as this significantly lowers your electricity consumption. The washing machine itself also influences power usage, therefore, it’s best to invest in a front loader as it’ll save you power, water, and money.

Proper insulation saves electricity and money
You could lessen your reliance on heating and cooling appliances if you invest in proper roof and ceiling insulation. By insulating the roof and ceiling in your home, you will be able to maintain an extra 5°C in winter and your home will be 10°C cooler in summer.

Small energy changes can make big differences
We all need to come together and make a concerted effort to reduce our electricity usage. Not only will this help minimise load shedding, which would greatly benefit us all, but it will also help us live in a more environmentally responsible way. In the long run, becoming energy efficient will help our planet and take some pressure off your pockets.

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