Counting the kilowatts


It’s possible that I may be getting a little bit obsessive about reducing my electricity use. To illustrate this statement, here are some of my newer actions and their reasoning’s:

  1. When I’m cooking anything at home, I try to only have one appliance running at once, or a max of two. So, for example, if I need to boil some water to make stock for a pasta sauce I’m making (which has already started and is on low on the stove) plus I also have to microwave something, I will not multi-task all 3 things. I wait until the kettle is done before using the microwave. I know both use a whack of electricity at once (even if for short periods) and I figure that spreading my electricity drawing load that little bit will somehow help with the overall load that Eskom complains about between 5 and 9pm.

    This also means that if I’m cooking a dinner that requires using 2 stove plates, I turn our electric heater off while I cook (assuming it was on in the first place). Generally I don’t feel cold while I’m in front of the stove cooking, so actually, having the heater while I’m cooking is a waste. And my other half hardly feels the cold, so he has yet to notice this new habit of mine.

  2. Talking about the heater, we have waited to use it until almost 3 weeks later this year than when we switched it on last year (but that’s also because winter has arrived really late in Joburg this year).  But I have also resolved not to switch it on before 6pm. That means I’m not adding to any excess load during “prime-time” for a whole hour.

    We also have not yet used a heater in our bedroom. Only been using our electric blankets which go on just before we go to bed to warm it up, and then we switch them off before we fall asleep.

  3. I’ve always been a switch-bitch, turning lights off even in other people’s homes and offices, so it’s natural that I now also even switch off the hob light when I step away from the stove. Every little bit helps, right?
  4. I actively ensure that my laptop is fully charged before 5pm and I unplug it from the wall as soon as the clock chimes, plus I’ve gone as far as scheduling my *cough* downloads of *cough* important things to pause during the “prime-time”. I’ve told myself that the router works harder when it’s being used full-ball, which must mean it’s using more electricity (this is not scientifically proven of course – it’s just my theory). Naturally I also turn the router off when I leave the house with my laptop tucked under my arm. And I don’t charge any other gadgets/phones etc during “prime-time” either.
  5. And I have mentioned that I switch off the microwave when we’re not using it too, right? That annoying “0” on the display bothers me…

Am I getting a little extreme? Do you have any potentially-odd-to-everyone-else-but-you electricity-saving habits? Do tell…