Friday, June 20, 2008

How to Cut your Electricity Bill?

Are you trying to save as much as you can nowadays? Yes I think we do. Not because we are stingy or poor, we just don't want to pay more of what we don't need. As mentioned in my post on which bill to pay first and how to save on them, I will talking about how to minimize our electricity bill on this post.

All right. As a smart consumer, before we try to save, we should understand how the thing costs us first, meaning how TNB is charging us.

TNB bill is easy to read and understand.

1. Understanding on kWh
Basically it is quite simple. When we pump our petrol to our car, we are charged by
liter (l). When we use electricity (from appliance), we are charged by kilowatt-hour (kWh). When we use a 1 kilowatt appliance for an hour, that's consider a kilowatt-hour. For example:
a) A traditional light bulb uses 100 watts.

b) A typical desktop computer uses about 150 watts.

c) A central air conditioner uses about 3500 watts.

If the device listed in amps instead of watts, we can just multiply their amps with voltage to get the watts. For example: 5 amps x 150 volts = 300 watts

2. New Tariff

So, what is the new tariff per kWh TNB charging us from next month onwards?
You can always refer to TNB web site. In summary, it (per kWh) charges based on the followings:
a) 1st 200kwh RM0.218
b) 201-300kwh RM0.345
c) 301-400kwh RM0.345
d) 401-500kWh RM0.374
e) 501-600kWh RM0.39
f) 601-800kWh RM0.405
g) 801-1000kWh RM0.445
h) 1001-2000kWh RM0.46

For example, if you use about 361kWh per month, then you have to pay (200 x RM0.218) RM43.60 + (100 x RM0.345) RM34.50 + (61 x RM0.345) RM21.045 = RM99.15
Before the new tariff effectives, perhaps you just need to pay about RM80.

To make it simple, you can calculate your new tariff here.

3. Electrical Usage
Now we analyze which appliance or device having huge or small kWh consumption, which categorized as below:

a) Heavy Weight
5000w Electric oven
5000w Clothes dryer (electric)
3800w Water heater (electric)
3500w Central air-con (2.5 tons)
1500w Microwave oven
1500w Toaster (four-slot)

b) Middle Weight
900w Coffee maker
500-1440w Window unit air-con
200-700w Refrigerator
140-300watts Desktop PC with 17" CRT montor
120watts 17" CRT monitor

c) Feather Weight
100watts Floor/box fan (high speed)
60-100w Light bulb
55-90watts 19" TV
15-95watts Ceiling fan
40watts 17" LCD monitor
45watts Notebook
18watts Fluorescent light bulb
4-165watts Video game (PS2 = 30w, XBox = 70w, XBox 360 = 165w)
4watts Clock radio
1-20watts Sleep mode PC

4. Savings Ideas

I believe you have realized something from the watts consumption listed above. From what I observed & experienced, the following ideas may be applicable for us to reduce our electricity bill.

1. Air-Con
We all know air-con is the major contributor in the electricity bill. Okay, to reduce 20% of the bill, please replace your air-con with fan. This is cruel and we don't save to suffer especially in Malaysia. Perhaps you can just adjust the temperature lower or combination of using air-con & fan. You can also set timer to reduce the usage. I think you have already know about this.
If you are using central air-con, you can try to use window unit air-con, as you can control it in a more efficient way.

New air-con can be polish nowadays.

2. Water Heater
Another enjoyable appliance we don't wish to sacrifice it from our list. Don't worry, there are ways to reduce the electric meter from running.
a) Try to lower the water heater temperature while bathing, it's still warm anyway.
b) Use water heater only during cold weather, and speed up your bath time.
c) Fix dripping hot water taps as soon as you discover.

How about bath together to cut your bill? I like it man.

3. PC & Monitor

Just off your PC & monitor while not using it. Don't leave it standby/sleep mode overnight. I understand a lot people paid for unlimited broadband to do p2p download. If so, just off your monitor then.

Sometimes, it's not just about PC, you have your modem router/UPS/stabilizer to pay also. So, I don't use UPS/stabilizer, use surge protector and notebook instead.

Recommends Belkin surge protector, come with lifetime warranty & insurance.

If you're a PC user, you should also replace your old CRT monitor with LCD monitor. You can save about 80W per hour. 17" LCD monitor is very cheap nowadays and it's better for your eyes too, if compare to CRT.

4. Light Bulb
Replace your normal light bulbs with compact fluorescents, you can get them cheap at hypermarket or electrical stores. You would save about 82w per hour for each light bulb. Imagine if you replaced 10 normal light bulbs in your house, you will able to save up to 820w per hour! Just invest them, you'll definitely benefits in long run.

Beware of some fluorescents light bulbs are not lasting long.

Please check your existing light bulb watts and make sure you buy the correct one. For example, if your existing light bulb is running 100w, you can replace it with 18w fluorescents light bulb. The standard replacement is listed as below:
60w > 10w, 75w > 13w, 100w > 18w, 2 x 75w > 26w

5. Fridge
Replace your old fridge with at least model issued in 2004 and above. The new fridge consumes lower watts, where you able to save up to 500w per hour. Visit your nearest electrical store and ask for prove, if you don't trust me. If new fridge is too expensive for you, you can try look for >2004 second hand fridge or credit card easy payment, no need borrow from Ah Long la.

LG fridge does make your life easier.

6. Television
Since the price is a lot lower now, you might think of replacing your big heavy Color TV with a new 32"-40" LCD TV? It may be true, but you really need to check your TV watts usage before you buy. Of course the larger inches TV you buy, the more electricity it consumes. Energy Star claimed it's rated TVs use about 30% less electricity than standard televisions and use less than 3 watts when they are in the ‘standby' mode. That's cool huh.

Anyway, don't forget your TV doesn't shut off when you press the power button, it goes on standby mode in fact. In some cases, 10% of the power used when it is standby. For convenient and protection, you can plug TVs and monitors into a switched surge protector or a wall outlet that is controlled by a switch.

Holy cow! Do you need that big plasma TV at your house?

7. Mobile Phone
Please remember when your mobile phone is fully charge, don't let it charge over night for unnecessary waste. Unplug phone chargers from plug when not in use.

8. Power Saver
Install power saver today to save your overall electricity at 10-25%.
Some said they even can save up to 30%. It's about RM228 (including delivery) for entry model, under 500W. Since this might be a potential good business, you can gain extra income if you become an agent of power saver reseller.

Make sure you buy branded, proved & original power saver.

9. By pass or slow down your electric meter
Ahha, it's always illegal to do so, but i still notice a lot of people doing so. Who care when come to savings!

After all, you may be able to save maximum about RM10-RM30 per month. Remember, the more you use, the more you pay. Although it won't help much, bear in mind if we able to save RM20 per month from our electricity, we save up to RM240 per year! We can spend these saved money somewhere else. In long run it can be even more.

Dont you ever heard, "sikit-skit dahulu, lama-lama jadi bukit"?

Happy savings, Malaysian.


sindut said...

Interesting. Thanks.

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LOLz, though savings its good, if best do you any good way to increase our income as well?

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Thomed Daniel said...

Many ways are available to reduce your energy use, but some methods save more power and money than others. Just see the link in this guide you will find many simple ways to reduce your electricity bill..hope this will help you .

Anonymous said...

What about slow cooker? My housemate seems to switch it overnight everyday! What is the tnb charges if 10 hours daily?

Anonymous said...

Very informative, thanks. Just a correction. Reducing the temperature of your water heater does not reduce electricity consumption. This is the same concept as the electric fan, the electricity consumption is the same regardless of the fan speed. You can save electricity on the air con by setting the temperature higher. Not for water heater.

Anonymous said...

If you dare, doing bit of illegal setting even save your bill up to 50-70%, but must use the reliable source. Keen to know more? Then share your email address here for pm. Thanks

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