If you live in South Africa, or some other countries in Africa, you will know about the hassle of load shedding. With ever-changing load shedding schedules resulting in plans having to change on your side, keeping up with all stages of your life may be a bit more difficult, never mind the stages of Eskom’s schedule.
We’ve looked at the best ways to prepare for load shedding and summed them up to take the bite out of a difficult situation. Here are some tips to keep the stress away during the ongoing power outages.
1. Check The Schedule
First and foremost, the most important and obvious tip when preparing for load shedding is to check the schedule. This will help you to plan your day better and halt inconveniences from becoming habitual. There are several load shedding apps you can download to help notify you of any upcoming power cuts. Besides downloading an app, you can also search for sites online that will give you daily and weekly updates. Check the load shedding schedule, plan ahead, and make your life easier.
2. Charge Your Devices
When you’re expecting a power outage in your area, make sure to charge your electric devices ahead of time. Use an hour or two before the start of the power cut to get your devices up to their full battery capacity, or as close as possible. Another useful tip is to buy car chargers for your devices. If you’re travelling home and know you’ll be arriving to no power, charge your phone as much as possible on the way home.
3. Prepare Meals In Advance
There is nothing worse than being stuck without something to eat during a power cut, or even worse, having it begin in the middle of your food preparations. Even if you haven’t reached a meal time during the day, prepare your meals in advance so that you won’t be left hungry while waiting out the power cut. Setting some time aside on one day a week (Sundays being very popular for this) to prepare your meals for the next three or four days makes life a lot easier. Stick to foods that will stay edible for long periods when refrigerated, such as stews and curries.
4. Stock Up With Alternative Lighting
Sitting in complete darkness can often be intimidating and scary, not to mention unsafe. Be sure to stock up on candles, solar-powered, or battery-powered lights. Not only will they help you move around the house easier, but having your house lit up as much as possible from an outside view is a lot safer.
5. Invest In An Alternative Cooking Appliance
If you don’t have the time to prepare meals in advance, buy yourself a small cooking device that can be used when the power is off. Examples are a solar cooker or a 2-plate gas stove. They also make for great investments during camping trips.
6. Store Frozen And Boiling Water
If you know that you’ll be needing hot water during the power outage, boil as much as you can ahead of time to store in a flask. The same goes with cold water – store and freeze as much as you can ahead of time if you’ll be needing it.
If your gate needs to be opened and closed manually during load shedding, arrange for a security guard from your local security company to meet you while doing it. This is especially important to do at night to avoid the vulnerability that the darkness brings with it.
If you are able to purchase a generator, life during load shedding will be a lot less stressful. If not, plan ahead of time and use the tips mentioned above to stay safe and make life easier. For any electrical problems that may come as a result of load shedding, check out the list of professionals on the SweepSouth Connect platform who are always willing to lend a helping hand. If the power cuts are causing you to have to play catch up with your work, book a SweepStar to take care of your home cleaning services, leaving you with one less thing to worry about.
Don’t let the power cuts dim your inner spark. Remember that the simplest things in life, like catching up with a friend of family member, are the best things to do during load shedding.