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What do you miss the most during power outages?

Richard Mackay

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I dont want to take out a loan and dont have the funds to splash out on an ideal system ... so I am looking into alternate ways to get started and build on it.

I do have a 5 kva generator just in case the fridges are off for longer than 5 hours or I need to also run the geyser (reduced to a 1 KW element) if I get caught without power unexpectedly ... I can run all essential items from the generator ... some will say it is way to expansive ... I am yet to justify R100 - 150 K outlay on a solar system ... in 11 years we have been stating in this house ... I can tell you on 1 incident that the power was off longer than 5 hours.

First -  Gate automation ... has a 7 amp/hr battery backup ... getting in and out of the vehicle is not only an inconveniance ... it becomes a securty risk.

second -  Lighting ... nothing like trying to scratch around in the dark to find a torch or the rest button  ... and again security ... I have purchased 3 magneto LED lanten @R199 each  when i bought them ( I am so impressed with these lights ...both for brightness and how long they stay on) mounted them in strategic positions 2.2-5m off the ground for optimal light ... which lights up our whole house ... in fact I am so impressed with these light I since purchased more for working on site ... with the added bonus of a usb charger ... I am yet to find a better solution ... Security lighting is still a problem at the moment ...I am busy trying to find an affordable solution (I have 14 x 10 watt LED security lights around the house.

third - wifi (we have unlimited) ... yu can live without watching a movies for a couple hours ... When there is load shedding its a good time to facetime/zoom and connect with family and friends ... with this virus killing entire families ... staying at home and socialising has become a big thing for us ... and once again security ... my alarm is linked to our devices for notifications and to switch on/off the security lights (which I am working on) ... last night we had load shedding from 6-8pm ... the router switched off ... so I took a DC male connector checked the router input is 12 VDC (made sure the centre pin is +) and ran a ripcord to the 18 amp/hr power pac used for all the peripherals on the alarm system ... problem solved ... I have a ZTE wireless router as a backup which has a 8 hour battery capacity ( the battery needs to be replaced because I left it in the vehicle on a hot day)

Living in SA ... a gas stove is a no brainer ... cooking food ... hot water for a bath or coffee is not a problem. 

All my equipment in my workshop and site equipment is battery operated ... office has laptops with 6 hour backup ... all other dives have a min of 12 hour backup.

It would be nice to have a 60 amp backup generator or a R100K solar system with a pile of batteries.

Do i miss anything during power outages ... simple answer ... no.














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From my side, i welcome the calm that comes with the power cuts. I enjoy the peace of the area, now under threat by the increasing sounds of buzzing Gennies.

My current needs are probably to keep my alarm going as the "home contents redeployers" have gathered that alarms wont last long during load shedding. Mobile towers down, so we become sitting ducks waiting for them to arrive to liberate our hard earned possessions.

Any excuse to be outside around a bonfire and a braai for me


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While I am practically off grid now, I wasn’t always in this position. 

Years ago I started with one 180w solar panel, a cheapie 20A pwm controller and a 105Ah deep cycle battery. All the rooms in my house were fitted with 12V 5W LED down lights that ran straight off that battery. I also had two 12V 10W LED floodlights into the back and front yards. 

The idea of having lights on everywhere changed the whole family’s mood and made the load shedding more tolerable. 😊

We would have missed lights the most during load shedding. 

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So, yesterday afternoon Shitty Power decided to loadshed us from 12h00 to 16h30. Only, as ever, it never quite works out that way...

My wife and I are Netflixin and chillin with the aircons running and I decide to go forage a pizza at about 17h00. I reverse out of my drive and it looks like a scene from Walking Dead, neighbours roaming the street gazing in confusion towards the sky. Naturally, being neighbourly, I wind down my window and ask what's going on? "The power hasn't come back on", they tell me...

Eventually Shitty Power figured out how to turn it back on at about 22h00.

My question: Where have these people been for the last 20 years? Is it only dawning on them now that we're in the crap?

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