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Load Shedding Savvy

Updated: Apr 14, 2022

Load shedding will probably get worse during the winter months, what can we do to mitigate the further risks this will bring to our homes?


It's not a pleasant reality, but it is still a reality ☹️.


Load shedding may get worse or continue as is during the coming winter months. As homeowners, we need to protect ourselves and our biggest investment against whatever added risks this situation may bring with it. Here are a few tips that we can all easily apply that will help when it comes to preventing losses as a result of LOAD SHEDDING



SECURITY

If you are a homeowner in an urban area you probably have an alarm, an electric gate motor and perhaps an electric garage door opener. These items are all a part of your home security, and although they all have battery backup's the battery life will be depleted more and more the more power cuts we get.


ACTION

  • Get your batteries tested by a reputable technician to make sure that they still have enough stand by life left in them. The cost should be no more than a call-out fee(approx. R400-R500). A new battery should cost around R180-R250 if they need replacing.

  • If you're still not comfortable and you have a little extra budget, ask your technician to add additional battery backup and power supplies (approx. R900-R1500 installed per point). This will double your standby time in times of power cuts.

  • Make sure that you can manually "lock" your garage and gates if there are power cuts and the motors do not work.



ASSETS PROTECTION

In the world we live in today, our homes are essentially giant multi plugs powering a whole bunch of electronic appliances and consumer electronics. These items bring great convenience to us and we love using them. The only problem is that because they run off electricity, they are sensitive to energy fluctuations. Load shedding, power cuts and the like play havoc with energy stability. When power gets cut and then reinstated, power surges and power spikes are a common occurrence. This is when microprocessors and other electronic boards get burnt; damaging or destroying all our household appliances, electronics and electrical equipment.

ACTION

  • Install surge arrestors in all your DB's (distribution boards). This will cost around R1200 per board installed. Most homes have 1 or 2 DB's

  • Unplug all your equipment when the power cut happens so that when power is restored, you can plug the equipment in again in a controlled manner and not expose your gear to the initial power spike that happens.

  • Use surge-protected consumer multi plugs. Most large brands that manufacture such items have a written guarantee should the item at the end of the plug suffer when power spikes and surge occurs. These retail from as little as R80 and can be found everywhere.



INSURANCE

Most homeowners' insurance policies offer limited cover when it comes to power surge and/or power spike damage. Make sure that you know what your limits are and what the conditions of cover are. Some insurers insist that the property be protected by surge arrestors and some don't (check the fine print). I do not know of an insurance company that will waiver an alarm warranty (requirement) even if there was a power failure, because they will argue that you could have mitigated that risk by implementing the suggestions above (within reason).


ACTION

  • Talk to your broker and review your policy conditions with them. Ask specific questions regarding power surge cover.

  • Consider the losses that you could suffer and make educated decisions as to what action you feel is required and then, ACT.


 

If you would like to talk to us further about this, please reach out by following the link below


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