Scorching summer heat calls for increased usage of air conditioners and coolers – more energy demands. This results in high electricity bills. As our lives heavily rely on machines, we are running air conditioners round the clock. The engines are, in turn, producing more heat in soaring temperatures. Consequently, in an urban set-up, it creates an oven like situation where we are being slowly baked by the heat produced by these machines. In this blog we will be discussing how to minimize the effects of summer heat and how to reduce electricity bills.
Ways To Effectively Reduce Electricity Bills This Summer
How to save electricity? What are the ways to save electricity during summers are some of the questions that people ask. We will be discussing five ways to reduce electricity bills this summer.
- Keep your roof cool
- Unplug devices
- Use electricity during off-peak hours
- Choose your air conditioner wisely
- Machines that consume more electricity
Paint your roof white
Summers in Pakistan bring in unwarranted long hours of load shedding. One of the most effective ways to survive load shedding is to paint your roof white. When your roof reflects sunlight, it cools down the internal atmosphere of your house. If your roof is coated in black tar, it will create an oven effect by blocking heat inside the house. Of course, this means more heat on the inside.
If the roof of your house gets direct sun, you will have to run the air conditioner for a longer period of time in order to reach the desired temperature. It’s been observed painting the roof white reflects around 90% of sunlight and reduces ensuing heat, keeping the indoors and outdoors temperatures balanced. This also means that you might not need an AC to keep your room cool. The air current will gradually lower the temperature inside your home. In Pakistan, on an average, PKR 15 – PKR 35 per sq ft. are charged for making roof cool.
According to a report in DAWN, “On a larger scale — a study claims that every 1,000 square feet (92 square metres) of roofs painted white can offset 10 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions. So, if for example, we paint 2500km2 of roofs in Karachi (estimated covered area), it would be the equivalent of taking 2,242,480 cars off the road for 20 years.”
Unplug devices not in use
Another effective way to reduce the electricity bill in summer is turning off devices that are not being used. You shouldn’t only switch off your TV, but also unplug it. Any charger, electronic device, computer or any appliance should be unplugged after use. Although this information is widely known, people still do not practice it. One of the major reasons, besides laziness, is that people don’t save a lot by unplugging devices — merely around PKR 100 to PKR 500 people. Think of it this way, you are paying extra money for something that you did not even use. Even if we can afford to pay the extra amount, we should keep in mind that we have limited resources.
Inspect devices that consume more energy
Hire a local electrician who will visit your house and inspect which part of the house is consuming more energy and why. When people are living in the same house for a long period of time, it is likely they ignore mending old wires or repairing rusty sockets. These small but important electrical items consume extra energy. If you want your home to be energy efficient, then fix the leaks. This process will require less cost and also reduce your electricity bills.
Use appliances during off-peak hours
On your electricity bill, you can see a schedule. This table suggests those time slots when the meter runs normal and when it runs faster. You should try to take advantage of the hours when the meter functions at a normal pace. You should operate heavy-duty machinery, such as the washing machine, iron or vaccum cleaner, during these hours. Charge appliances during this period.
Choose your air conditioner wisely
When buying an air conditioner, make sure you choose the machine wisely. The machine you choose should be best fit for your room. It is a common myth that a big AC will make the room cool faster. The right-sized AC for your room will provide cooling and also reduce your electricity bill. Generally, in Pakistan buildings are not insulated. Also, summer weather lingers for more than half of the year. So, buying the right AC will lower your electricity bills. Do thorough research of which brand and size is best for you before buying anything. ACs are quite expensive.
Machines that consume more electricity
There are machines that consume more electricity than their counterparts. For instance, laptops consume about 50 watts of electricity, whereas energy-efficient desktops use around 100 watts. Additional 50 watts of electricity is consumed by the monitor. Laptops are, therefore, preferred over desktops at workplaces and at home because of its low consumption of electricity. Similarly, top load washing machines require more electricity than front load washing machines. Also, we should not think about the purchase price of an appliance alone when buying it. We should also consider lifecycle costs of running the appliance. The lifecycle cost is the sum of the price of the appliance and the cost of electricity or fuel to run it. It also includes the maintenance costs.
Apart from these tips to reduce electricity bills, you can also install a solar panel on your home. Solar panels utilize sunlight and convert it into energy. Therefore, during peak hours you can switch the system of your house to solar panel mode. For more details, you can check how to install solar panels on your home. For more budget-friendly tips stay tuned to the best lifestyle blog of Pakistan.