Stoves Currently Being Used

Stoves Currently Being Used

There are four types of stoves that are used in Monwabisi Park which can be found in the table below.  An electric stove can only be used by people who have access to electricity and can afford to use it for cooking.  Because there is limited access to electricity , many people use paraffin and gas stoves as alternatives.  There are various benefits of using each of these energy sources yet, paraffin is the most common source for cooking in Monwabisi Park.

Paraffin can be bought in small quantities of one or two litres at a time.  This appeals to many residents because they have little savings and are forced to live in the financial present, therefore buying in bulk is difficult.  The price of one litre of paraffin as of December 2009 in Monwabisi Park was R6.50.  Paraffin can be bought in cash stores all throughout the settlement.  According to our cooking survey (link to cooking survey), typically a family using paraffin for cooking will go through six or seven litres of paraffin a week.

Paraffin is currently used in two different stoves throughout Monwabisi Park. The first most commonly used paraffin fueled stove is the flame stove. The flame stove is very dangerous and can is easily combustible when knocked over, yet it requires little maintenance, is widely accessible and very cheap; the price runs between R30-R50.

The second less common paraffin fueled stove used in Monwabisi Park is the primus stove. Although the primus is slightly less combustible than a flame stove it can still cause a fire if it is knocked over. The use of the primus stove is less common than that of flame stoves or gas stoves.

Gas is sold in one store in C section of Monwabisi Park.  While it is less accessible than paraffin, gas is an appealing option because gas stoves are safer than the paraffin stoves currently in the park.  There is a misconception in the community that gas is more expensive than paraffin; however we have found that it costs, slightly less to use gas as the primary cooking fuel.  This is because a refill on a tank of gas costs R82 and the tank can last from two to four weeks depending on usage.  This is a weekly expenditure ranging from R21 to R41 which is about the same or less than weekly expenditures on paraffin. Yet the start-up cost for a gas stove is R300 for a two burner stove which makes it more difficult for the residents to afford.  Further cost analysis on the stoves can be seen here.

Paraffin Flame Stove Paraffin Primus Stove Gas Stove Electric Stove

Flame Stove Primus Stove Gas Stove Electric Stove
-Can ignite if knocked over and cause a fire.
-Parts can be hard to replace if broken.
-can have an open flame

-Start up cost of stove is too high

-access to electricity
-electricity bill can get too high