Understand your Dewa bill
Picture used for illustrative purposes. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Warmer weather is upon us and that means cranking up the AC and having cold showers. During the summer, you may notice a spike in your electricity usage leading to a high utility bill. However, you can slash your utility bills this summer by using a ‘Consumption Assessment Tool’ from Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa).

The assessment tool helps customers monitor their electricity consumption levels at home, and make more sustainable decisions based on tailored conservation tips. DEWA announced the introduction of the new feature on their official Instagram channel on Tuesday, April 5.

So, to prevent a high utility bill this summer, here are some helpful tips to reduce electricity bill and how to use the ‘Consumption Assessment Tool’

How to use the Dewa Consumption Assessment Tool

The consumption assessment tool is aimed at helping people understand their water and electricity consumption patterns, so that they can work on reducing their utility bill. To benefit from the assessment tool, follow these steps:

1. Visit - https://www.dewa.gov.ae/en/about-us/strategic-initiatives/consumption-assessment-tool

2. Click on ‘Start now’

3. You will be asked to sign in using your UAE Pass or Dewa ID.

4. The website will then take you to the Consumption Assessment Tool. Click on ‘Start the assessment’.

5. The website will then take you through a detailed questionnaire which will systematically ask you regarding your residential unit, the appliances you have in each part of your home – living room, bedrooms, kitchen and bathroom and ask details of your consumption patterns. For example, users will first be asked to provide details of how many bedrooms they have in their residential unit and whether they live in an apartment or villa. Based on your responses, the questionnaire will adapt the questions to find out more about how much energy you may be consuming at home.

6. Once you have completed the questionnaire, you will be given a breakdown of your energy consumption and which activity is consuming the most electricity and water.

7. Then based on the survey’s responses, you will be given customised tips that you can use to reduce your energy consumption. For example, if you have an empty rooftop in your villa, DEWA recommends installing Solar Photovoltaic Panels to help reduce your electricity bill. Similarly, depending on the type of lighting options you use, Dewa provides recommendation on the most energy-efficient lighting options for your residential unit.

Energy saving tips to reduce your Dewa bill

Here are some general tips to save energy according to Dewa:

Rooms

· Make sure all your house windows and doors are properly shut when air conditioning is on;, this will make the air conditioners are more energy efficient.

· Replace air conditioner filters at regular intervals.

· Ensure air conditioners, even if they are a central system, have individual switches or controls in each room.

· Set your thermostats to 24C in the summer, and set it on automatic mode, so that it shuts and restarts at intervals.

· Make sure you unplug your mobile phone charger when it is not in use.

· Unplug personal computers, electronic devices and chargers when they are not in use, most electronics use electricity even when switched off.

· When buying a monitor, consider getting an LCD screen as it is 66 per cent more energy efficient.

· Use one large multi-socket to plug your computer, monitor, speakers, scanner, modem, and printer.

· Clean your light bulbs regularly. Dirty and greasy light bulbs can reduce the light output by around 10 per cent.

Bathrooms

· Avoid long showers. Reduce your shower by a few minutes and save up to 150 gallons a month.

· To minimise the amount of water used for a bath, plug the drain first and fill the tub only 1/3 full.

· You can save more than 100 gallons a week if you keep the tap closed while you shave.

· Replace tap filters and showerheads around the house with water flow reducers. Water flow reducers on taps save 50-70 per cent of water.

· When adjusting water temperatures, turn the water flow down instead of increasing it to balance the temperature.

· Close your water heaters in the summer. The water gets naturally heated at that time of year.

Kitchen

· Reduce the number of times the refrigerator or freezer door is opened.

· When baking breads, pre-heat the oven or pan 5-8 minutes before placing the bread. As for frying and roasting, don’t pre-heat your pan or oven for a long time.

· Turn off the oven 5 to 10 minutes before cooking time is up. The trapped heat will finish the cooking.

· Make sure you clean your fridge and freezer often and defrost it. Frost build-up increases the amount of energy to keep the motor running.

Laundry

· When buying a washing machine, try to go for high-efficiency models. These use less than 27 gallons per load.

· Wash your clothes in warm rather than hot water; this will decrease your consumption by 50 per cent.

· Wash dark clothes in cold water. It will help clothes keep their colour and also saves on water and energy.

· Don’t
dry your clothes in the dryer more than necessary. You will save 15 per cent in energy consumption. When possible, use a clothesline instead and let your clothes dry naturally in the sun.

Gardening

· Your garden does not need to be watered daily. Check the soil moisture 2 to 3 inches below the surface, if the top 2 or 3 inches of soil are dry then it requires watering.

· Use drip irrigation system for shrubs and trees so that water goes straight to the roots, preventing run-off.

· Regularly check your sprinkler system valves for leaks.

· Houses that use sprinklers consume 35 per cent more water than houses that don’t.