As the electricity tariffs are set to increase, saving electricity has become an absolute necessity.

“With budgets already tight, not many South Africans will be able to absorb the upcoming electricity price increase. Hopefully, consumers will see a price increase as an incentive to take action against rising electricity costs, by cutting back on the amount of electricity they use in their homes. Prudent power management is the order of the day,” said Graham Craggs, spokesperson for Budget Insurance.

Through making a conscious effort, one would easily be able to cut back on electricity consumption and costs.
Budget Insurance offered 11 electricity saving ideas:

1. Switch off devices when not in use: This could be as easy as unplugging your cellphone charger when not in use.

2.Cold for laundry: 90 per cent of energy used by top-loading washing machines is for heating water. A front-loading washing machine doesn’t only use less water, but also costs less to operate than a top-loader. Washing machines also use the same amount of electricity for a single item as it does for a full load, so try accumulating dirty washing until a full load is possible.

3. Use a low-flow showerhead: A low-flow showerhead uses less water per minute, which means less water to heat.

4. Use low-energy light bulbs: Changing your traditional light bulbs to energy-saving equivalents can make a big difference. Also, turn off lights in rooms you are not using.

5. Switch off the air conditioner: You need three times more energy per degree to cool a room, than heating it.

6. Optimise the energy consumption of your PC: Technology has advanced to such an extent that PCs can now be set to enter energy saving modes.

7. Dishwasher: Fill your dishwasher completely before operating and use short wash cycles, rinse-only cycles, mid-cycle turn-off and other features are designed for energy conservation as well as convenience.

8. Fridge: Avoid overloading your fridge as this uses more electricity. Also, don’t open your fridge unnecessarily and switch on the energy-saving switch if one is fitted to the appliance,

9. Freezer: A freezer should be kept as as full as possible to avoid heavy icing and the door should be kept open for as little time possible.

10. Microwave ovens: Opt for defrosting food in the fridge, rather than in the microwave oven as it will be more economical. Rather use your microwave oven to cook small to medium quantities of food, as it is more economical to cook larger portions of meat in a conventional oven.

11. Tumble dryer: Cleaning the lint filter in a tumble dryer after each operation helps maintain a full airflow and maximises the drying efficiency. However, one’s first option should be to dry clothes outside in direct sunlight or use the tumble dryer in consecutive loads where possible, as your dryer will be warm already and will save on initial energy consumption.

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