It is a fact that every home needs water and electricity to function properly. It is also true that water and electricity costs have continued to increase in South Africa putting extra pressure on household budgets. Research has shown that small changes in daily habits can save water and electricity in the home, consequently reducing expenses and conserving the environment. How best can electricity and water be saved?
Essential electricity saving tips
- Turn off the lights and take advantage of the sun and rely on natural light as much as you can each day. When you do need to use lights, remember to turn them off when you leave the room. Hang your washing outside on sunny days, and use an indoor clothes rack when it’s raining, instead of using the clothes dryer.
- Install a programmable thermostat to manage your heating and cooling systems efficiently and cost effectively. You can also opt to turn the temperature on your geyser thermostat down to 60 degrees Celsius.
- A quick and easy way to reduce your electricity bill is to turn off appliances at the powerpoint when you’re not using them. When things like computers and TVs switch into standby mode, they still use electricity, which can really add up over time.
- When you are buying a new appliance like an air conditioner, fridge, washing machine or dishwasher, check the energy star rating. This will help you find the most efficient products and save you money in the long run. You can save a lot of electricity by buying energy efficient light bulbs and appliances.
Essential water saving tips
- Bathrooms take up a huge percentage of water consumption at home. There are lots of ways to save water in the bathroom such as taking shorter showers, installing a water efficient showerhead, installing a dual flush on your toilet and turning off the tap when you brush your teeth.
- Look for ways to re-use water wherever you can. Save the water you use when boiling eggs, vegetables or pasta, and use it to water your plants. You can also water your plants with grey water from your washing machine or bathtub.
- Dripping taps and leaking toilets are not only annoying, they could be adding extra costs to your water bill. Get these leaks fixed as soon as you spot them. You can always avoid water wastage from a leaky tap by just continuing to collect the dripping water in a bowl or bucket and using it elsewhere instead of sending it straight down the drain.
- Investing in water efficient goods when you need to replace household products must be encouraged. It is now possible to get water-efficient showerheads, taps, toilets, washing machines, dishwashers and many other water-saving products.