We all know the feeling when you just realized you forgot to lock your door. At best, it’s a quick moment of nagging anxiety – at worst, it’s a debilitating slide show of anxious thoughts that will kill any chance of being productive for the rest of the day. A simple solution would be to install a home security system, which would help with the anxiety, up until you got your power bill at the end of the month. Conventional home security systems run 24/7, constantly taking power out of your outlets and money out of your wallet. Not only is this not the best option for those who are interested in saving money, it’s not the most environmentally sound either. Here are five simple ways to strengthen your home security system without putting a dent in your energy bill.
1. Get Solar Powered Cameras
Every day companies are coming out with more high tech security cameras, offering things like better zoom and resolution. As these cameras become more powerful, however, they also become more demanding with their power requirements. Fortunately, solar powered cameras are an option. Although these are susceptible to failure (for example, overcast weather for a few days) most models’ batteries can store enough energy to last a few days. Make sure to not get “weather proof” models that have the camera in a sealed enclosure – they usually alter the temperature and humidity automatically, ensuring optimum conditions for the camera and for running up your power bill. Also, if you get a rotating “turret” style camera, be sure that it isn’t set to lock on and follow movement automatically, since that can only waste more power.
2. Use Motion Detectors
Motion detectors are a great way of cutting back on power consumption. An ideal setup for power saving would not use any cameras, and rely solely on infrared motion detectors to sound an alarm. However, if you don’t feel comfortable enough without any cameras, be sure to get a camera that uses PIR (Passive Infrared) technology. These cameras consume much less power than their ultrasonic and microwave counterparts, since they only look for infrared radiation versus actively emitting sound or light like radar.
3. Get a Setup with a DVR Recorder
When you get a setup with a DVR Recorder, you have the option to forego buying another monitor since you can connect it straight to your TV or computer. Most security systems like this offer DVRs with their setups, which are compatible with most computers and TVs. Doing this not only saves money, but eliminates excess monitors that will only drain your house and your wallet of power.
4. Solar Powered Flood Lights
Aside from all the obvious downsides of anything that’s solar powered, getting flood lights is a great preventative measure. Although a light will do little to stop a burglar set on breaking into your home (unless he’s a vampire), the attention it’s drawing to him is usually enough to make them reassess if breaking in is worth the risk.
5. Get a Dog
Hands down the best alarm system for your energy bill, investing in a well trained dog can actually prove to be more effective than conventional alarm systems. If you’re looking to setup cameras in your business to prevent loss, then cameras might be more useful than a dog’s testimony, but in all other situations, burglars will be more likely to flee from a dog attacking them than an alarm buzzing in their ear.
Source: Talking About Green (Tushar Mathur)
In South Africa, security is a major concern for everyone. Crime in South Africa is out of control and preventative solutions unfortunately a fact of life here. Other eco-friendly security solutions can be built into- or added to your homestead or business. If building a new house, natural features such as steep inclines and rocks can be incorporated into a security-conscious design. Of course, determined criminals can overcome just about any security feature but deterrents are better than allowing easy access. Vegetation can also be used around perimeters, particularly thorny shrubs grown as hedges. A great indigenous South African shrub is the Kei-apple (Dovyalis caffra). The Kei-apple can be grown as a virtually impenetrable, thorny hedge that will deter unwanted intruders (animals and humans alike). The fruits of the Kei apple are also enjoyed by birds and can be made into a delicious jam, high in Vitamin C content. Dovyalis caffra is a hardy, drought- and frost-resistant plantwhich makes it an ideal species for a water-conscious garden. Bamboo, of which there are hundreds of species, can also be grown as a ‘green fence’ to deter criminals and can serve as a sound barrier if you have a noise pollution problem. So, improving your security features in an eco-friendly way can also reduce your environmental impact and help you live more sustainably. There’s something positive for crime-weary South Africans!
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Water conservation and renewable energy such as solar energy are two issues that affect the global community; make a difference and start conserving water and switch to renewable energy today. Another way of reducing your carbon footprint is to switch to green insurance, now available in South Africa.