April is going to see a double whammy increase. Eskom will raise the tariffs for electricity & Petrol prices are going up due to levies & the increase of the international oil price. This is going to affect consumers and the economy hard. The time of an abundance of cheap electricity is over.
What can be done to counteract the price increases?
With the average salary increase below the increase of petrol & electricity price increases, there are few options left. Either accept a decrease in living standards or change your lifestyle. Before we go there lets see if with a change in habits one can save money.
Reduce your electricity consumption.
Some things one can do to reduce your electricity usage.
- Lower the temperature of your geyser. A geyser is one of the main contributing factors to an households electricity consumption.
- Switch of geysers not in use (Guest Bathroom’s etc).
- Insulate your geysers and hot water pipes.
- Take short showers instead of a bath.
- Replace your shower head with a low-flow water saving one.
- Replace old incandescent light bulbs with newer energy efficient CFL’s or LED lights.
- Switch of lights, disconnect appliances & devices when not in use. Some appliances & devices still consume a lot of electricity while on standby.
- Do your laundry on a slightly lower temperature setting.
- Weather permitting hang your washing out instead of using a tumble dryer.
- Making only one cup of tea or coffee ? Then only boil water for one cup of coffee.
- Replacing appliances or devices, check for the energy rating.
- Use a microwave instead of an oven.
- Only use your dishwasher when fully packed.
- In the winter close curtains to contain the heat.
- Fix dripping taps (especially the how water ones).
- Swimming pool pumps also consume a large amount of power. Try to reduce the hours it is running. In winter it can even run less as algae growth is reduced.
As one can see there are many ways to reduce your electricity usage, thereby reducing your impact on the environment. With lower energy use it also becomes more cost effective to install renewable energy.
Cut down on your petrol usage.
Petrol can take a large chunk out of your budget and for many people it is a necessity to have and use a car, but their are still ways how one can save a bit.
- Plan your journey. Try to concentrate your shopping to a certain area and try to finish your shopping to avoid unnecessary trips back to the shops.
- Try to join a lift club either for the daily school run or going to work and back. Not only will it save on petrol, but it also helps to reduce wear & tear.
- Have shops within walking distance? Decide to walk to the shops for a few items instead of driving.
- If you can avoid peak hour traffic with lots of stop/start. Stopping & starting all the time wastes lots of petrol.
- Keep to the speed limit.
- Anticipate traffic conditions & traffic lights. Don’t race to the next red traffic light.
- When replacing your car, consider a more fuel efficient (smaller) car.
- Keep your car well maintained.
Following these tips not only will save fuel & maintenance cost, but also contribute to a saver road.