The third day of March is coming to an end..this means that the hottest days of summer is almost upon us. It also means that everyone would have to endure the interminable power outages, the scorching heat of the sun, and everything else that goes with it. And there seems to be no  end in sight for the power outages, what with the government yakking and yakking away about the insufficient fuel supply in the country’s power plants.

I knew it would come to this becuse it always does  every year.  That’s why I decided to make some drastic moves to cut  down my household’s consumption of electricity for all that it would help the national situation. It did help our budget though, because the bill went down from P2,800 a month to P1,000-P1,3000 a month.

Here’s how we  did it:

  1. All  the lights had  to be turned off by 10pm. Even the light on the porch and at the  back of the house that we used to leave on all night were now turrned off. Thieves would have to bring their own flashlights if they want to see their way around our yard. And we no longer leave a dim light on in our room during the night. After all, the light streaming in thru the windows from our next-door neighbor is enough to chase the bad dreams away.
  2. The AC  now has a strtict on-off schedule. It turn it on at 8:00pm so that the room would be cold enough by the time my kids go  to bed at 8:30pm. It’s also set on a 6-hour timer and once it shuts off at 2am, we turn the electric fan on. It’s also turned on for an hour or so in the afternoon for the kids’ afternoon nap.
  3. The refrigerator has a schedule as well. I unplug it every night at midnight then plug it back in at around 5 or 6am. Luckily it stays cold enough for the chocolates not to melt.
  4. I boil rice in the morning but make sure to cook enough rice to last until dinnertime.  This means that the rice cooker would only have to be plugged in once a day now.It has also had the unexpected effect of putting me on a low-carb diet since I allways have to make sure that  there is still enough rice for everyone to eat at dinnertime.
  5. The TV is always  unplugged when no one’s wattching. And the kids are only allowed  to watch the morning cartoons during the weekends. They have to have  their naps in the afternoon and then play in the street with their neighborhood friends until about 6pm. THis has greatly reduced their chance of ever becoming obese because they get enough hours of physical activity daily

When I first formulated the plan for reducing our electric consumption, the only thing I had in mind was to minimize the impact of electric usage to the environment since this country is still burning fossil fuel for that purpose. I also wanted to save a few pesos so that we have a little extra for other necessities. I never knew that it would also be beneficial for me and my kids until I saw them sweating from a game of catch or dodgeball.

My next goal is to fill our roof with either solar panels or photovoltaic panels so we can harvest the sun’s heat for electricity. But we still have to save up for that since it can be quite expensive. Good thing we have almost P1000 worth of savings on our monthly budget from the electricity that we no longer consume. 🙂