Let’s face it, load-shedding is here to stay for the foreseeable future, so best we take some proactive steps to deal with darkness.
While the best-case scenario would be to go completely off the grid, the reality is that this expensive exercise will not necessarily be a viable option for everyone’s budget.
The next best step is to invest in a couple of clever, load-shedding savvy products that will get you through the dark periods without breaking the bank, whether you are at home or camping under the stars. We got a couple of tips from Cape Union Mart to help you navigate the many different products on the market and to shed some light on items that will best suit your lifestyle and needs:
How much tech do you need to keep charged?
Are you a one-person household with a smartphone and a laptop that you need to keep charged during load-shedding, or do you have a family of four with multiple tablets and phones? When buying a power bank to keep your smaller devices going, make sure to choose the right size. Try this basic guide:
- A 5,000mAh power bank is ideal for charging a single smartphone
- A 10,000mAh or 20,000mAh power bank will charge multiple devices or one device multiple times for extended outages. The latter should provide enough juice to keep the entire family entertained during an outage.
How many appliances do you need during an outage?
A portable power station is ideal for keeping larger devices and appliances going when there is no electricity, while not being as noisy as a generator. If you want to just keep your laptop, small appliances and Wi-Fi going, a 250-Watt-hour (Wh) battery capacity portable power station, like the Jackery Explorer 250 Portable Power Station, is ideal. Power users looking to charge larger electronics like a full-size refrigerator, a TV, a blender, or even an electric grill should look at a 1000Wh portable power station.
Remember that the battery inside a portable power station should last an average of 500 recharge cycles – which usually takes about three years. This doesn’t mean the battery is dead after 500 cycles. It means the station will only charge to 80% capacity after 500 charges.
Have you made the move to LED lights?
Rechargeable emergency LED lights have proved to be the most cost-effective way to keep the lights on in our homes. Thanks to clever tech developments, LED lights are now more energy-efficient without sacrificing brightness or longevity. They can go as bright as 800 lumens and stay on for longer with twin-pack lithium battery technology.