The high cost of living increasingly overwhelms an important sector of the Costa Rican population, since aspects such as the price of electricity, water consumption, and the purchase of food, maintain a significant upward trend. However, the impact of this trend can be compensated by modifying certain consumption practices.
This is the case of Gustavo Gazo, a resident of Heredia, who changed his habits to save money. At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, Gazo realized an increase in the payment of his bill and thanks to the Manos al ahorro program (alliance between MABE-ESPH), he went from paying ₡ 41,000 to ₡ 13,000; that is, this user had a reduction of 57% of his electrical consumption.
“I was complaining about the cost of living and so much money that must be taken out to pay taxes, water and electricity, but there are certain changes that one must make daily that will affect consumption. For example, I changed the standard bulbs for LEDs, and when the microwave is not being used we keep it disconnected”, commented this Heredia resident.
Mabe, a manufacturer of electrical appliances, as a result of this reality, provided a series of tips that can help citizens reduce the payment of their electricity bills, cause energy savings, while positively impacting the environment:
• Do not put hot food in the refrigerator, as this will increase your electricity consumption to cool the food and get it back to the right temperature.
• Try to open the refrigerator for as little time as possible and for short spaces, because if you do it for long periods the internal temperature will increase and the compressor will have to start adjusting the internal temperature again.
• Check the energy efficiency label of the appliance you choose, so that it identifies a low consumption of water and/or energy.
• Unplug from the outlet this equipment in your home that you are not using, for example television, video games, small appliances, chargers, among others, since these can consume energy even when on standby.
• Use the washing machine with full loads of clothes to save water and electricity. And also take advantage of efficient wash cycles when they are light loads.
• Cover the pots or pans when preparing your food, this will speed up the cooking process and therefore reduce electricity or gas consumption.
• It is recommended to periodically check the refrigerator’s packaging to ensure that it seals well and that there is no loss of cold that could increase electricity consumption.
• Try to gradually replace the lighting in your home with LED bulbs, since these allow significant savings in electricity.
In times of change and adaptation to the needs of households, it is necessary to educate yourself with new savings habits. In addition, analyze as a family the advantages of changing much more efficient appliances, with technologies aligned to reduce the carbon footprint.
Also, Mabe indicated the importance of carrying out a review of the time it takes in the shower, plus considering whether it is necessary to replace some appliances with others that are gas-powered. In addition, consumers can discuss with the company that provides the electric service, if they can opt for an hour meter; that is, its consumption will vary depending on the timetable.