Solving the Myths, Why Electricity Prices are High During Summer in the Philippines?

Solving the Myths, Why Electricity Prices are High During the Summer in the Philippines?
Why Electricity Prices are High During Summer in the Philippines?

Let us solve the myths about why electricity prices are high during the summer months in the Philippines. 

The comforts of modern society are dependent on electricity. 

But as you might have noticed, during summer, electricity prices peak and take about 10% of an ordinary Filipinos monthly budget.

Inside this article we will talk about two (2) real reasons why electricity prices shoot up during summer, and what can ordinary Filipinos do to lower down costs.

First, Reduce of Power Supply and Increase of Demand, Higher Electricity Cost

The demand increases and the supply reduces. This simple formula clearly tells that the electricity prices during summer would go up. 

First, let’s talk about the low power supply during summer.

The reduction of Power Supply or Generation normally comes from the lower water levels from dams of Hydro Power Plants. When the hot summer sun starts to peak the water level goes down. And in summer, Drinking Water and Water Supply to Farms remain a priority, which contributes to the reduced generation. Hydro represents 16 % of the Philippines' installed capacity which is a significant figure in the energy market.

To further explain why this affects the electricity prices, allow me to talk about two types of power sold in the market. The first is base load, and the other is ancillary power. And the quickest way to explain the two commercially is, Base Load is cheaper than Ancillary.

Hydro Power is declared as base load in the Electricity Market. Thus, if the Generation of Base Load is insufficient, the Ancillary reserves are required to fill in to meet the demand. As a result, a more expensive power is sold to the Market and then paid for by the consumers.

Now let’s talk about the Increase of Demand.

Demand for electricity shoots up during summer for very obvious reasons. No classes, family comes home, and the sun is just violent. Summer for Filipinos is also a time for gathering. It’s a short period when families come together and celebrate at home. The increase of activity inside the house gives more reason for us to turn on the TV, electric fans and stoves, and Air Conditioning system. 

We all want to be comfortable inside our houses during summer.

Second, The Dreaded System Loss

System loss is a vague term entered in our electricity bill every month. It can mean a lot of things for the Electricity Distribution Utility, for all we know, they will charge just anything in there. But one familiar approved term in Electrical Engineering that consumers can be concerned about is Copper Loss, Transmission Line Loss and Pilferage.

Copper Loss and Transmission Line Loss are normal phenomena on the Transmission Line Conductors and Transformer Coils, where it dissipates waste electricity. Think of it as the stalks of sugarcane that fell from the delivery trucks while on transport from Harvest to milling. Also, transmission conductors have a unique behavior, it increases in length proportionally to the increase of ambient temperature. And when this happens, the Resistance of the conductor increases and in return more transmission line losses.

And finally Pilferage. Electricity consumed through illegal tapping is unmetered. And sadly, regular consumers are paying for this theft through the form of system loss.

You might ask, why are consumers paying for the system loss?

Electricity is accounted for by the Distribution Utility, from Source to your house Meter. And if their number won’t match, as a business, they would collect that lost profit through the consumers. And they would just label that as System Loss.

Effective Methods to Reduce Cost on your Electric Bill, During Summer

Now that we have talked about big reasons why Electricity Charges are high during summer, let us now look at ways how you can save on your electric bill. It’s best you apply this method at home now, especially if you’re on a tight budget.

  • Turn off your lights in areas where it is not needed. For example, if everyone is in the living area, turn off the lights in the kitchen and bathroom.

  • Unplug unused appliances. These are referred to as vampire loads. Though they are not turned on, a part of an appliance circuitry is consuming a tiny ounce of power.

  • Check the refrigerator thermostat. If you’re not freezing an entire cow in the freezer, you can lower down the knob to 1.

  • Clean your refrigerator regularly to maintain its efficiency to keep the cold air in and the hot air out.

  • Turn off appliances when no one is using them. This is your electric fan, TV, and Radio.

  • Replace your guard lights with solar lamps. 

  • Check the insulation of your room if you’re using an air conditioner. Cover any holes in your room, or close all windows when your unit is running. And window coverings also matter. Choose something that is thick and dark.

  • Learn how to clean your aircon filter. This is basic maintenance that helps save power.

  • Choose a laptop instead of a desktop

  • Wash your clothes by hand. If you’re not allergic to detergent, let the Washing Machine rest and wash by hand.

  • Iron clothes that are for work and for occasions only.

  • Use LED Lights

  • Maybe you need a smaller TV.

If you start applying the methods above, you see good results on your next electricity bill. All are proven ways to save money on your electric bill during summer. And on top of that, the conservation of electricity is a meaningful action that is good for the environment.

Final Thoughts, Why Electricity Prices are High During the Summer in the Philippines?

In this article, we were able to uncover myths about why electricity prices are high during summer. And, we were also able to provide proven tips to save money on your electric bill. Summer is perfect for gatherings and celebrations with family, but let us all be prepared for the “price” we need to pay. 

And if this article is helpful to you, please do share it on your Facebook. Thanks!