Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Surviving the brownouts

For about a month now, the Philippines has been experiencing frequent brownouts between 1 to 4 hours daily as the power plant crisis worsens. In the beginning, it was tolerable but as the brownouts grew longer, the inconvenience started to be felt.

For most houses, during brownouts we can only rely on candles, emergency lights and battery-powered equipment to tide us through the power outage. Unless, of course, you can afford to have a generator.

The brownouts happen daily now at 2 to 3 times in a day so after a month of them, my household has somewhat gotten used to them and have learned to adjust to them. It's funny how we can be so begging for something we neglect when around. Applies to most things in life I guess.

It was good we have long purchased a UPS for our computer, LED emergency light and a rechargeable fan and light-in-1. I specially love the LED light because it is brighter and lasts longer before needing recharging. Our UPS has been really helpful in keeping the electric fan on on very hot days. Usually lasts 30 minutes of fan time.

We have also stocked up on candles, matches and water in cases when the water tank runs out. There were other things that we had to do now on a daily basis that helps in eleminating inconveniences during brownouts. FIrst, we have learned to cook rice and other dishes for two meals if possible. You see, we use a rice cooker. Although of course, we still have our reliable rice pot to use in the stove. Second, to try to do all cleaning and washing before the brownouts. Third, cook early for dinner so that we are already having dinner by sunset to maximize natural light.

The brownouts are aggravated by the hot temperature and when water goes too. Personally, I am okay with brownouts but waterouts, no!

So if you are experiencing the same problem, hope you could keep your cool.

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