Does anyone else see the irony

June 17, 2008

in a power saving campaign that’s on TV that tells you to save power by switching things off and that points to a website.


I’d have to say we’re pretty good. No electric heating during the day (just an oil heater at night in the girls’ room). Washing machine and drier switched off at the wall when not in use. Gas fire in the lounge. Cold washes for clothes. Not sure what else we can do (I like having a warm fluffy towel so I’m not turning that off).

I know, I’ll turn off the TV! Why don’t they put that on the TV ad?


19 Responses to “Does anyone else see the irony”

  1. Mysterious Dave Mather Says:

    Well, we turn everything off at the wall (computer, alarm cocks, stero, and the rest) when not in use. Mrs Dave turns off the hot water cylinder for 12 hours a day (the water stays hot), we don’t use electric heating (fireplace, and dressing warmly), and the house is naturally much warmer than our last flat. So we don’t feel as cold as we could.

    Get hard; turn off the towel rail! I thought you lived in the Winterless North anyway.

    The thing that surprised me was that the ad said “that you didn’t need a computer to play”, which may be true, but has anyone done the maths on how much drag on the grid everyone’s PC is, both at work and at home?

  2. Glenn Says:

    Apart from the usual conscientious power saving to cut down on cost I’m not going the extra mile. The only people benefiting from this campaign are the media outlets and advertising agencies capitalising on the government money set aside for an actual crisis.

  3. audent Says:

    I was abused by a radio journo today demanding an answer as to why our Wellington building was “lit up like a Christmas tree”. I had to point out that of the 24-odd floors in “our” building only one was occupied by our staff… and we had naming rights to the building. But that was all.

    He was quite sceptical of the whole idea. Seemed to think we were responsible for every light, every degree of air con, etc.

    Such is life I suppose.

  4. audent Says:

    OH, and I’ll turn off my heated towel rail when they prise my fluffy towel out of my cold … hands.

  5. Mysterious Dave Mather Says:

    Mrs Dave, who is very good on this sort of thing, tells me that a towel rail may have a low power usage on an hourly rate, but over 24 hours the power is similar to that used in a run of a tumble drier.

    So let’s say you are running the towel six months a year, that is using the same amount of power as 180 drier loads. All so you can have the feeling of warm fluffiness on your backside.

    You could get the same by rubbing a dazed cat across your buttocks, at no drain on the network. Think of the savings! You could call the cat “Fluffals”.

  6. Audent Says:

    My wife is allergic to cats, you insensitive clod.

    Actually, I never switch off the HTR. Ever. So I could have roughtly 360 drier loads of warm fluffy goodness… but I do not believe that my HTR costs anywhere near that much to run. I’m going to do some research, if I can be arsed…

  7. Audent Says:

    Right! has a calculator.

    I’ve chucked in one small HTR running 24 hours a day and it says my monthly cost is $8.21, whereas a tumble drier doing a full load (!) five nights a week is $15.77 a month.

    Now, I wouldn’t be doing a full load every time but it won’t let me put in anything else… so if I lower it to three nights a week the cost comes down to $9.46… which is better but still not a: accurate or b: cheaper than my HTR.

    I already doubted Mrs Dave’s intellectualism (well, she married you didn’t she) and now I have further proof! Not sure what of but I have further proof and that’s all that’s needed!

  8. Audent Says:

    And interestingly, when I’m logged on this machine I get audent with a capital A and a small teddy bear photo, but when I’m logged on at home it’s a small a and I get the invisible bike cat!


  9. Mysterious Dave Mather Says:

    Hey, Mrs Dave’s clear-sighted taste in men is simply above reproach, and she is in no way responsible for the contents of a blog page.

    Getting back to the stats. According to your numbers then, your power usage on your hand rail is equivalent to nearly 125 tumble drier loads in a year. All for a device you probably did not realize you couldn’t live without until after the year 2000. Up until then, you apparently lived without it.

    So a dazed cat is out then, how about a poodle? Or if you have a big enough section, a lama. You would just have to run out and catch it straight after your shower.

    So simple. A quick trip to a livestock retailer, and that need for a warm fluffy feeling across your buttocks is solved, at no drain on the grid.

  10. Audent Says:

    I’d be a llama farmer (I think lamas are different) but then I’d also be an alpaca tracker and an otter spotter.

    seriously I really should write those kids books. Dammit.

    Cold. Damp. Hands.

  11. Mysterious Dave Mather Says:

    Yes that’s right, I remember now, Lamas come from Tibet, and are not as fluffy as a llama. But they could be as warm.

  12. audent Says:

    do they stack as well…

    that’s an awful joke. I’ll stop now.

  13. Bwooce Says:

    If you like your towel rail, you can buy (most recently seen at Placemakers) a hidden timer unit that turns them on for 4 hours twice a day. So this cuts the power consumption by 2/3rds and still gives you hot towels. Mine is adjustable to stay on for longer, but 6-10 seems to cope with the all users satisfactorily.

    Slightly annoying when we lose power and it resets itself to an odd time offset, but otherwise pays for itself fairly quickly (and reduces the base-load, good for the country).

    If I was in a “regulate it” mood I’d say that it should be mandatory for all new towel rails. Certainly some more publicity about them would be a good idea.

  14. audent Says:

    Oh, now THAT’S a bloody good idea and something I will be insisting on when we replace this relic… or move house.

    Damn. Well, Mrs Dave… what say you to that?

  15. Mysterious Dave Mather Says:

    I don’t know what Mrs Dave would say, but I still say “Get hard, turn it off!”

    They idea of you, living up in the Winterless North, needing a heated towel rail. When all the time you are surrounded, as you must be, by coconut palms and steel-drum bands. Well, it makes me think “what would Pine-Tree Meads say?” Would it be “sook”? Would it be “Get a Llama (or Lama)!”?

  16. Bwooce Says:

    Just for those of you in the deep, deep, deep South then: the unit(s) are all retro-fittable to an existing hot&fluffy towel rail. They are just a little white box with three leads, and any sparkie could fit it in a jiffy — it’ll fit back inside the wall space behind the cover. $35 for the box, sadly more for the sparkie. I suspect it isn’t legal to DIY, although they do come with instructions.

    I’m sure it will perplex the hell out of any future owner of my house though 🙂

  17. audent Says:

    Up here the HTR is more about keeping the soggy warm blanket of air we call “weather” off our towels… without it we’d have mould growing everywhere.

    Yeah, I’m not that good with the electrics… I’d need a sparky and a fireman and a health and safety official just to make sure I haven’t plugged in the green wire by mistake. But when this HTR dies (probably from overuse) I’ll be onto it in a jiffy.

  18. Mysterious Dave Mather Says:

    Actually, Mrs Mysterious Dave was wondering, is it possible to install that hidden timer wireable to something like a hot water cylinder?

  19. audent Says:

    I can’t see why not, and let’s face it, I am Not an Electrician, so in my world… of course you can!

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