Rising costs of electricity have been a concern for millions of people across the country. It’s alarming when up to 50% of one’s income goes towards paying to keep the lights on. Combining an engineering background with detective skills can lead to significant savings on electricity bills.
The goal is to reduce energy consumption from 293 units to less than 200 units. A basic energy meter, which costs around Rs. 3000, can be used to calculate the units consumed by most electrical appliances like refrigerators, AC, electric iron, and so on. For instance, a fridge that stays on for 24-hours for food storage consumes about 4 units over 24-hours. This amounts to around 120 units over 30 days.
For lighting, using three LED bulbs rated at 10W each – one for a room, one for a kitchen, and another for a restroom results in a consumption of about 2 units, averaging to 5 units per month. This brings the total to 125 units.
Cooling is essential for comfort during hot days. Using 2 fans with a power rating of around 80 watts results in a monthly consumption of about 34 units – assuming the fan runs for 14 hours. Reducing fan usage by avoiding it after returning home from work can further reduce consumption. An alternative to staying cool is to go out for a walk in the park or visit a mall. Pakistan’s dhabba culture provides a social space for citizens to connect and discuss issues, offering a break from virtual platforms.
Considering the electric iron, some might choose to forgo its use. Summing up the units, the total consumption can be well below the 200-unit range (~160 units). There’s flexibility to adjust a few more units as needed.
By consistently keeping the consumption under 200 units for 6 consecutive months, one can qualify as a ‘protected customer’. This category receives a lower subsidized tariff on the energy bill for consuming 200 units or under for 6 consecutive months. Further savings can be achieved through promotions. In Karachi, the electric service provider offers cashbacks via their preferred banking channel. Companies like IESCO, LESCO, FESCO, and others offer similar consumer beneficial products.
In conclusion, tracking electricity consumption provides insights into usage patterns, enabling savings in both units and money. Investing the savings in more efficient technologies, like inverter fans, can further reduce electric unit consumption.