Energy Saving and Going Green
The monthly electricity bill is a matter of no small concern for households in most large cities, as is the growing threat of climate change and increasing temperatures. So, what can you do to go green?
Heating and cooling
For those of us living in warmer climates, the appliance that draws the most energy is often the air conditioner. The obvious solution is to invest in a more efficient AC from the start; a five-star invertor unit may seem expensive, but the savings on electricity will more than cover the cost in the long run.
Additionally, when it comes to both heating and cooling, ensure that your house is properly insulated. Make sure that your walls and roof (if you live on the top floor or in an independent house) have adequate insulation, so that they don’t allow heat to leak in during summer or out during winter. Double-glazed windows are also a worthwhile investment.
Lighting and other appliances
Another popular energy-saving trick is to use more efficient lights, either CFLs or LEDs. Both consume far less electricity than incandescent bulbs. Of the two, LEDs are more environmentally friendly and efficient. The key while selecting lights is to look for the number of lumens rather than the wattage—lumens measure the amount of light a bulb gives out.
In addition, adopt the common-sense approach of switching off all lights, fans and appliances such as TVs or computers when not in use.
The next level
Once you’ve covered the basics, you might be interested in switching to renewable energy — for homes, that usually means solar power. A system of solar panels and batteries can supplement your conventional electricity supply, cutting costs.
The government also provides a subsidy on panels. However, solar policies in many states on issues such as net metering are still poorly implemented. Nevertheless, this is a green option to consider if you have the space. And don’t forget, there are more easily installed alternatives such as solar water heaters.