Things you can do

Spend what you can afford today and let your savings pay for bigger investments.



They found that one of the easiest way to trim their utility bills is through lighting.


Their policy became: ‘If it’s not in use, switch off the Juice!’ By lighting only the spaces they were using, they cut their lighting electricity consumption by some 20 percent. Then they slashed it even more dramatically by converting their whole house to LED globes (Guide to Globes) provided by Eurolux.


CFLs help save energy, but LEDs are the latest and greenest technology in lighting. The family didn’t forget the sun, however. They invited it inside by installing a tubular skylight from Solatube over a dark stairwell far from windows.


Watch the webisode to see how they did it.

What about you?

Below are some ideas of things you can do. If you have more ideas, join the conversation and share!

  • No cost

    Change habits to save at least 10%
  • Low cost

    Spend under R1000 to lift savings to about 30%
  • Invest to save

    Invest more to take savings up to 50% or more
  • Switch your family on to switching off

    You already know you should turn lights off on the way out of a room. So how can you make it a habit for every member of the household. For example, try taping a piece of string from the top of each doorway to eye-level as a reminder for a month. Or start your dinner only once you have switched off the lights in unoccupied rooms.


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  • Let the sun shine in

    It may seem obvious, but make it a habit to reach for the curtain or blind cord in the morning rather than the light switch. Numerous studies have shown that natural light can reduce stress and improve health and productivity, on top of energy saving potential. In the summer, however, watch out for heat build up! Close the curtains on northwest- and west-facing windows to help keep your home cool.


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  • When choosing interior paint, lighten up

    Covering walls with dark colours could double the wattage and therefore energy you need to light a room and dim the effect of natural light coming in through windows. Need more light? Choose a lighter colour. There are also paints which boost reflectivity significantly.

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  • Replace your bulbs with LEDs

    Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are the lighting of the future, but you can start saving with them today. LED globes that used to cost hundreds of rands a few years ago can now be found for as little as R50, saving 80 to 90 percent on your electricity used for lighting. Even burning just 2 hours a day, the best LED deals will pay for themselves in less than a year. And they last much longer than ordinary incandescent lamps or even CFLs. LEDs are best-suited to replace halogen downlighters, but you can now find them in nearly any shape, warmer colours, reflector angles and most wattages. For detailed advice see our Guide to Globes.

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  • Conserve cash with CFLs

    Though LEDs have advantages in lighting colour and longevity, compact fluorescent lamps remain a somewhat more affordable way to save energy. And if you need to replace a standard 60 or 100 watt incandescent globe, the equivalent twist CFLs are easier to find than LEDs. Here’s a thrifty plan: Make of list of your globes and the hours per day they are used. Replace the most heavily used ones, especially downlights, with LEDs, and the rest with CFLs. With the savings on your utility bills you can buy more LEDs next year.

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  • Stay secure with motion-sensor lights outside

    Outdoor lights burning overnight will certainly lead to higher utility bills, but numerous studies suggest they may also light the way for criminals to do their deeds, particularly if high walls shield the property. Infrared motion detector light fittings (that switch on when something moves and stay on for a preset time) are more likely to surprise unwanted visitors, while using less electricity.

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  • Put light only where you need it

    Desk lamps, reading lamps and eye-level, under-cabinet fixtures for the kitchen will help you to see what you are doing better, allowing you to turn off unnecessary room lights. Ceiling fixtures often over-light rooms, often because too many downlighters are placed in areas where they’re not really needed. Dimmers can help, but they save less energy than you might expect. Try ‘de-lamping,’ removing a bulb or two.

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  • INVEST TO SAVE • Renovate to be LED-friendly

    LED manufacturers try to accommodate existing bulb styles and fixtures, but a renovation is a great time to let LEDs be LEDs. The technology is perfectly suited to long strips of lights that can be concealed in crown mouldings or under cabinets. Recessed downlights and track lights should be wired for mains voltage, without low-voltage transformers. Dimmable LEDs need dimmers designed for them. For long term best results, use high quality products from reputable brands, and qualified installers.

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  • INVEST TO SAVE • Let the sky light dark rooms

    If you need lights on during the day, find your way to the sun. Windowless rooms can benefit from light tubes or skylights. In hot climates, skylight blinds can help avoid overheating.

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Sponsored Products

Products used in the Ngewana green home makeover. Please note that this is not a product endorsement.

  • Bulkhead LED outdoor lights from Eurolux
    Outdoor lights can be power hungry because they are often left on for many hours. These use efficient LED globes.
  • Dimmable LED Light from Eurolux
    Dimmable LED – dimmability has always been a key issue with downlighting. This product is the solution.
  • Tubular Skylights from SOLATUBE
    Highly effective and simple to install, the Solatube DS Daylighting System transforms dark rooms into extraordinary spaces.
  • LED Candle Light from Eurolux
    LED candle lights combine modern energy efficiency with traditional shapes, perfect for use in chandeliers.
  • LED Floodlights from Eurolux
    These floodlights save power two ways - using efficient LEDs and motion sensors so they only turn on when needed.
  • LED globes from Eurolux
    Energy efficiency in a traditional shape. This globe is perfect for domestic usage.
  • Outdoor LED lights from Eurolux
    Energy efficient lamps are essential for outdoor lighting.
  • Pendant LED lights from Eurolux
    Energy efficient light sources can be applied to any domestic lighting.