South Africans can save money and become more energy efficient by changing their usage behaviour and using complementary energy sources.
While the usage of alternative energy strategies can minimise the impact of load shedding or grid outages, they can also assist households to save money, energy experts from the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) said on Thursday.
They were briefing the media in Pretoria on how South Africans can alleviate the impact of load shedding.
Ways to lighten your electricity bill
Principal researcher Jarrad Wright said shifting electricity demand by using electricity at different times of the day and week can also help to save significantly on electricity use and monthly household electricity bills.
“Moving the use of electricity around to different times of the day or week can help the power system significantly.
“At the same time, we need to continue to install energy-efficient LED lighting, as well as energy efficient and smart appliances, such as fridges, washing machines, tumble dryers and dishwashers, while thinking of improving electric water geyser efficiency with geyser blankets and piping insulation,” said Wright.
Wright said households can also shift to alternative power sources such as clean-burning cookstoves, increased household braai and replacing electric geysers with a solar water heater.
The CSIR advised South Africans to use only reputable suppliers and contractors registered with parent associations.
Save money in the long run
There are also a few affordable gadgets available on the market which have the propensity to make life a bit more bearable during the severe strain of rotational load shedding.
While most citizens would love to get off the power grid altogether, the sheer costs involved in setting up a fully functioning renewable energy system are just too great for the majority of South Africans.
If you’ve got the money to invest in solar panels and diesel generators; go for it. If you’re just trying to see out the dark times on a budget, take a look at these gadgets; they won’t break the bank, and they’ll be able to get you through a few hours of powerlessness.
Originally published by SAnews.gov.za additional reporting by TheSouthAfrican.com.