Loadshedding has become an unfortunate reality for most South Africans, but it doesn’t have to be a disruptive catastrophe. Here are six ways you can be better prepared for a power cut.
1. Set up alternative lighting sources
Keep torches or other battery-powered lights in an accessible place – along with fresh batteries. You can also use candles, but be aware of the fire hazard. Make sure they’re placed out of reach of children and pets and that you have a home fire extinguisher.
2. Ensure your devices are fully charged
The idea of being without our devices sends most of us into a panic! After all, they’ve become an integral part of our lives. We browse the internet, stay in touch with loved ones, watch videos … the list goes on. And during a power outage is the perfect time to catch up on social media, read (or write!) that book you’ve been meaning to or call your mom, so make sure your mobile devices, ebook, laptop and power bank are fully charged.
3. Download movies and series to watch later
If you have a Showmax subscription, you can download movies and series to watch later on the Showmax app. Android users with a Netflix subscription can also watch pre-downloaded movies and series on the Netflix app. The Showmax app is available for both Android and Apple. You can find out more about downloading Showmax content here and you can find out more about downloading Netflix content here. To make it even easier, you can add both your Showmax and your Netflix subscriptions to your Vodacom bill so you only have to worry about one bill at the end of the month!
4. Plan your meals ahead of time
Salads, sandwiches and other foods that can be eaten cold are good options. If you prefer a hot meal, invest in a gas stove or do what South Africans love most – braai! Power outages can be the perfect excuse to get together with friends. You can download the EskomSePush app to check when load shedding will be happening in your area.
5. Check your security systems
Make sure your alarm system and electric gates and fences have enough battery supply to last the duration of a power cut and regularly check that they are in working order.
6. Switch off appliances and lights
If load shedding catches you unawares, it’s likely that you were using electricity at the time. Make sure that all appliances and lights are switched off before you leave the house or go to sleep. This is especially important for appliances that may be a fire hazard, such as stoves.
Bonus tip... Invest in alternative power sources such as solar panels. They may seem costly, but the long-term payoff will be worth it.
Stay connected even when the power goes out: find out why an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) is a must-have.