Meralco explained that their overall rate per kilo watt hour went up, which means we will notice an increase in our electricity bills in the next few months. This is due to the scheduled maintenance shutdown of several power plants, which Meralco taps for energy. These plants have to reduce their electricity generation capacity and operate at a limited level using more expensive fuel. However, there’s no need for us to panic. Meralco recognized the impact of this to their customers thus, rate increase for December will be staggered or broken down to three (3) months. The increase that will be reflected in our bill this December will be reduced to Php2.41 per kilo watt hour from the original Php4.15. The deferred portions of Php1.21 and Php0.53 per kilo watt hour of the increase will be collected over the billing months of February and March 2014. Also, once maintenance is completed by 2nd quarter of 2014, electricity rates will stabilize.
I know that this may not be good news for all of us since, electricity cost is indeed a highly essential component of our monthly budget. However, there are ways on how we can conserve energy and save on our electricity bills starting now. Little changes and adjustments in the household must indeed start from us if we want to help save on electricity and the environment in general.
- Switch off lights and unplug appliances like televisions and DVD players when not in use. These devices still use electricity when on standby mode. Also, check your appliances and have them maintained to ensure they are running efficiently.
- Use energy efficient lighting like compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) instead of the incandescent bulbs. Although CFLs cost higher, they use up only 25% of the energy being used up by incandescent bulbs, and last eight times longer.
- Dirt lessens illumination by as much as 50%, so cleaning lighting fixtures regularly can be helpful. Also important is to remember that natural lighting is still the best source of light, and doesn’t cost anything too.
- Use a Power Board. It can supply power to multiple appliances at the same time and allows you to switch them off using only one switch. But remember to be careful as well because poor maintenance and incorrect usage of power boards can be a cause of many hazards at home.
- Use solar screens for windows and glass panels. Extra heat requires more energy for our air conditioners, thus, increasing cooling cost. Hence, it is better that we limit the heat that’s coming in our house.
- Use the Energy Guide when purchasing household appliances like air conditioners and refrigerators. Choose a unit with the highest Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) as this will help you save more in terms of electricity consumption.
- Proper usage of your washing machine can also help you save a lot. Use a front-load washing machine, which is more efficient than top-load ones. Make sure also that the water level is appropriate for the size of the load. Always try to wash in full loads, which is more energy efficient. Try also to lessen the need to use your dryer by just hanging your clothes to dry outside on sunny days.
- If there is an opportunity for you to change your appliances, purchase the energy efficient ones like inverter air conditioners, refrigerators, and induction cookers.
- During holidays, use LED lights for decorating your Christmas trees, since it uses only 33% electricity.
To further help us better and make things so convenient for us, we can now also download the MeralcO Virtual Engine (MOVE) Appfor free to our smart phones and tablets.
It features six (6) Meralco services in one application. Now you can check your Meralco bill; find the nearest Meralco Office or Bayad Center; be updated with Meralco’s power maintenance schedules; and get some Bright Ideas on how to use and save on electricity. The app also has an Appliance Calculator to help you estimate the consumption cost of your individual home appliances. What a great way to help us consumers who are always on the MOVE, right?
* This post is an advertorial for Meralco.