Category: Smart Living Tips

Energy Efficient Air Conditioners For Housing Society Residents – How To Purchase One

With global warming increasing temperatures significantly, every resident in your housing society must be feeling the heat. The sale of air-conditioners has been on an increase the world over, but air conditioners are power hungry monsters. They use up a lot of energy to keep the room cool and use more power than the other appliances in each house in a housing society.

Choosing the right air conditioner

How can you and the other members of your housing society plan to cut your costs (to the pocket and to the environment) while buying air-conditioners?

You can do this by opting for energy efficient models. More importantly, your housing society should ask all residents to look for energy star ratings on the ACs that they buy. The higher the energy efficiency, the more stars will the air conditioner have. Air-conditioners work by removing the humidity from the air, and then cooling the drier air.

You should know what you’re looking for when you buy an energy efficient air conditioner.

What You Should Look For

  • Cooling Capacity – For this, you need to understand about British Transfer Units. The cooling capacity should be something that you perfectly need as having a huge AC for a small room can be a waste.
  • Energy Efficiency – Look for the Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) when you buy an air conditioner. This is the ratio between the cooling capacity of the AC and its power consumption (Watts).
  • Coefficient Performance Rating (COP) – This is very similar to the EER. It is generally expressed as the ratio of cooling produced to the amount of energy used – energy output to energy input.
  • BEE Energy Star Rating – The Energy Star Rating rates the efficiency of the air conditioner in relation to the power usage. The more stars, the more efficient the given unit is.

A little bit about BEE Energy Star Ratings

BEE has made affixing Energy Ratings Labels mandatory for all room ACs from 2010. You might have to spend a bit more when you buy these energy efficient units. But then, air conditioners are the most expensive equipments in a home in terms of power consumption. So this additional investment should be well worth it, and help you save on energy bills through the life of the machine.

General Tips for Housing Society Residents

Here are some general tips that housing society residents can follow when buying air-conditioners. Take into account the size of the room, the heat, and the humidity levels in your region. Consider too, the number of people who can fit into the room and keep cool.

  • Size of Room

If you buy an AC that is too small for the room, it will be overworked trying to pump out all the humidity and cool the air in that big space. If you buy an AC that is too big, the room may cool too quickly, before all the moisture is removed, leaving the humidity hanging in the air.

  • Number of People

If just one or two people occupy the room, a small AC in relation to the size of the room might suffice. If more people need to be accommodated into the room, consider a higher capacity AC. The more people there are in a room, the more body heat they generate and the more the AC needs to work to keep the room cool.

  • Programmable Units

Look for programmable models. These can be programmed to provide optimal cooling during the early part of the night, then they can be automatically be switched off in the cooler hours of the early morning. They can also detect the area that needs cooling and adjust the settings automatically.

Do some research and ask around before shopping for your AC. With the range of models now available, you can choose the best fit for your needs and save on the energy front if you just keep the basic things in mind. If every resident in the housing society has an energy efficient air conditioner, a lot of energy can be effectively saved, with minimal wastage.


Get your Society on ApnaComplex – Today!
ApnaComplex is India’s most comprehensive web based housing society accounting, management and communication software. It is designed to make the life of residents and owners a lot better by bringing in more transparency and accountability in managing a housing society. Check out the features of ApnaComplex and sign up your society today to get the benefits! We offer a free 30-day trial as well so that you can try before you buy!

Solar Water Heaters For A Housing Society – The Types Available

If you find that the electric water heater in your housing society flat is sending your power bill soaring through the roof and still can’t do without the comfort of a hot shower, you can install a solar water heater.

Are you hesitating because they cost a fortune to buy and install?

Think of the money that you’ll save on electricity over time. The solar water heater will more than pay for its cost over time in saved electricity costs. When other members of the housing society start following your example and install the same, your housing society will effectively turn into an environment-friendly zone. You can even get the solar water heaters installed in a bunch, bringing down the overall costs.

Buying the Right Solar Water Heater

Basics About Solar Water Heaters

Solar water heaters use the sun’s energy to heat the water and for this reason there will be no utility bills to pay. The sun’s energy is free!

If your housing society is located in an area that receives a large amount of sunshine throughout the year, solar water heaters can be the most efficient solution for your power consumption problems.

The basic units of a solar water heater are collectors and tanks.

  • Collectors – This part of the solar heater collects the sun’s energy in the form of heat, in tubes or pipes. Water or a heat transfer fluid flows through the tubes, and is heated up by the energy stored in the collectors.
  • Storage tank – This is where the heated water is stored.

Solar water heaters can differ by the type of liquid flowing through the tanks – either water, or heat transfer liquids.

  • Open Loop Systems – These allow household water to run through the collectors, heating it directly. If your housing society water is not salty or acidic, this is a good system to use. If your water is salty, your housing society can think about installing desalination or water softening systems.
  • Closed Loop Systems -These generally use some anti-freeze liquid as the heat transfer medium. This liquid runs through the collectors, gathering heat along the way. This heat is then transferred to the water held in the storage tank. This type of system is mostly used in colder climates, where freezing is a constant problem.

Solar water heaters can also differ by the process in which the water or liquid is moved through the system.

  • Active Systems

Active systems use electric pumps and valves to circulate the liquid through the collectors. These systems are more expensive. They also use a little bit of electricity. For this reason, they won’t work during power outages. But the power requirements for the pumps are very low, and these systems are more efficient, as they actively keep circulating the water inside the collectors.

  • Passive Systems

These systems do not rely on pumps and valves to move the liquid through the collectors. These can be further classified into:

Batch Heaters or Integrated Collector Storage (ICS) Systems

These are the oldest type of solar heaters. As the name implies, the collectors and the water storage are one unit. The storage tank is placed inside an insulated box, with a glazed side facing the sun. This transfers the heat to the tank, heating up the water inside.

Thermosiphon Systems

This system relies on heat and gravity to keep the water circulating and flowing through the collectors. In Thermosiphon systems, the storage tank and the collectors are separated. The storage tank is located above the collectors. It works in this way – water flows through the collectors, heating up. Hot water rises, so, the heated water rises to the tank above. Cooler water from the tank sinks back, allowing the hot water to slowly fill the tank. The colder water then flows back through the tubes, continuing the process.

Solar heaters can also differ by the type of collectors used:
The energy collectors in a solar water heater consist of a network of pipes through which the liquid runs, getting heated in the process.

  • Flat Pane – Flat Pane Systems cover the whole network of pipes with one or two panes of glass, which absorb the heat and transfer it to the pipes.
  • Evacuated Systems – In Evacuated Systems, glass tubes surround individual pipes in vacuum. This reduces heat loss.

You can also buy hybrid systems which have electric heating systems installed in the storage tank. This can be used on cloudy days when not enough heat can be collected though the solar panels. If your housing society has decided to get residents to install solar water heaters, you can go with the idea.

Residents of the housing society can get together to find out more about Solar Water Heaters. The housing society association can do some more research about the standards, the collector and storage capacity and other features, to find what will suit the residents best.


Get your Society on ApnaComplex – Today!
ApnaComplex is India’s most comprehensive web based housing society accounting, management and communication software. It is designed to make the life of residents and owners a lot better by bringing in more transparency and accountability in managing a housing society. Check out the features of ApnaComplex and sign up your society today to get the benefits! We offer a free 30-day trial as well so that you can try before you buy!


Housing Society Events – What The Association Can Plan

Housing Society Events – What the Association Can Plan
This is nothing better than organizing some events in a housing society to bring all members together and foster the bonding. Your housing society can organize some events , but this should be a collective effort and not just one individual’s responsibility.

What Can You Do?
You and the other members of the housing society can organize some activities that will bring everybody together and give them a space to have fun. You can try out one of these event ideas in your housing society.

Events for a Housing Society

Event Ideas

  • Cook Off

You can organize a cooking competition. You can get the participants to make exotic food items and bring the food that they have prepared outside to a tent or marquee to be judged. If you have enough space and the facilities, you can even arrange options for outdoor cooking, and the participants can come out and prepare the food in front of an audience and the judges. You can suggest a food theme, or list the ingredients to be used after consulting with the other residents.

  • Pool Party

Does your housing society have a pool? Organize a pool party! As you are hosting it as a group, plan some theme for the party. Follow the theme for the invitations, decoration, music, food and gifts. This can be a very relaxing option during the summer. Pool parties can be great for your children as well, as they can have some fun in the water.

  • Talent Show

Organize a talent show. Organize different competitions for different talents, if you have enough people. The association should find someone who has a great knack for presentation and anchoring to run the show. Then you can form a committee and list out the participants, weeding out the talented ones among the residents. This can be a very fun and interactive event.

  • Have a Mystery Party

Organize a mystery game. Have a set of people enact a murder or robbery scenario. Plan the story, clue, suspects and circumstances well. The solution should not be random and illogical. You can find a lot of plots and scenario ideas for this on the internet, and you can put forth the idea during an association meeting. A mystery party will serve as a different option from the traditional ones.

  • Organize Fund Raising Events

Are you in the mood for charity? You can also have fun while serving a good cause. If you have people in your housing society, you can put together their talents and cook up a sale inside the complex, with the permission of the other members. This will help in raising some funds, and it will keep everyone occupied. The association can organize a sporting event and find local sponsors and advertisers who will contribute to the charity.

  • Have a Pet Party

If your housing society allows pets, you can include them in your party ideas. Organize events where people can bring their pets and show off their talents, as a pet show can be really good fun, especially for your children.

You can have fun this summer in your housing society by getting creative, as such housing society summer events will involve everyone’s help and satisfy children, elders and every single resident.


Get your Society on ApnaComplex – Today!

ApnaComplex is India’s most comprehensive web based housing society accounting, management and communication software. It is designed to make the life of residents and owners a lot better by bringing in more transparency and accountability in managing a housing society. Check out the features of ApnaComplex and sign up your society today to get the benefits! We offer a free 30-day trail as well so that you can try before you buy!


BEE Star Rating and Home Appliances – An Overview of BEE Star for a Greener Housing Society

It’s now become commonplace for a housing society to go green by adopting environmentally friendly measures, and in an effort to continue the same, you can opt for BEE Star Rated appliances. BEE Star Rating – you would probably have seen this on your refrigrator or on the home appliances in a shop. This is a rating that was adapted from Energy Star concept introduced in the US – initially applied to computers and monitors, but later expanded to include home appliances, electronic items, even homes. With every housing society trying to find ways to cut energy costs and go green, BEE Star Rating assumes a very important role.  

BEE Star Rating

A Little Bit of History – Energy Star

Energy Star was first designed by the US Environment Protection Agency back in 1992. The EPA was concerned about the increase in the number of power hungry appliances resulting in more power usage.

An increase in energy consumption puts more demand on the power plant that supplies the electricity. Many power plants burn fossil fuels like coal to generate power. This produces carbon-dioxide and other greenhouse gases.

What Products Come Under Energy Star Standards

Energy Star started out as a US standard, but was quickly adopted throughout the world. Most energy rating systems around the world are built on the Energy Star Model. The first product that this rating was applied to was computer monitors. Monitors, especially the old CRTs were the main power guzzlers in a computer system. Energy Star compliant monitors went into sleep mode when not used over a few minutes, reducing power consumption. Later, the EPA partnered with the US Department of Electricity to include more products. Energy Star now applies to diverse products like computers, heaters, air conditioners, lights, electronic products and even homes.

The Benefits of Using Energy Star Rated Appliances

The Energy Star label on a Home Appliance means that it uses less energy. This not only benefits the environment, it also cuts cost for the people who use them. Using Energy Star compliant home appliances results in significantly reduced energy costs.

Refrigerators, water-heaters, air-conditioners and other such products form a major part of power usage in a household. With Energy Star compliance, these products will naturally be more efficient in their energy usage, bringing down electricity costs. This may not seem like much in a small scale, but over a period of time, it can make a difference.

Reducing energy costs while at the same time helping the environment is a great feel good combination. So the next time you shop for a product or another housing society resident does, you should first look for its energy usage ratings.

Energy Star in India

In May 2006, the Bureau of Energy Efficiency, which functions under the Ministry of Power, launched a standards and labeling program for home appliances. Manufacturers of home appliances could choose to affix BEE Star Labels to guide consumers while buying an appliance.

This label can indicate the level of energy consumption of the device in two ways. It can give absolute values stating, on an average, the number of electrical units that would be used by the appliance. It can also use the star rating system. The star ratings range from one to five. The more number of stars, the more energy efficient the appliance is.

BEE Labels indicate a higher efficiency of functioning in the devices you buy. You will end up buying quality products that function well, while saving on electricity costs.

How Housing Society Members Can Help

Cutting back on power consumption helps reduce the need for society on costs such as DG Sets and associated fuel costs. But that need not necessarily mean to cut back on your comforts. That is where BEE Star Ratings comes in. Since this rating asks the manufacturers to build energy efficient measures into their products, residents in your housing society can buy BEE Star rated appliances for their homes and indirectly contribute to energy conservation. This initiative can be taken up the housing society association, which can organize a campaign to bring about the required changes. Although the housing society association can’t force residents to buy energy efficient appliances, spreading awareness can help the cause.

So the next time you buy a home appliance, you can try buying a star rated one and in this way save your money and also save the environment.


This article aims at collating and providing information for benefit of ApnaComplex customers and blog readers. While ApnaComplex has taken every care to ensure the information is accurate, we suggest to please use it only as a guidance for further discussion and action with help of relevant professionals.

ApnaComplex is India’s most comprehensive and value-for-money housing society / apartment accounting and management software. Read what some of our customers say about ApnaComplex and its features. There is a a 30-day no obligation free trial for every complex. Go ahead and register your complex and see how you can manage your complex more easily, efficiently, and effectively.


Housing Society Electricity Saving Tips- How to Purchase a Ceiling Fan for Apartments

When your apartment association members are thinking of drawing up energy saving tips for all residents, include the ceiling fan into the list if someone else already hasn’t. Ceiling fans should form an important part of your standard home appliance installations. Even if every house in your housing society has a centralized air-conditioner, it cannot beat the value that a ceiling fan provides. The running cost of a Ceiling Fan is almot 25 times lower than that of Air Conditioner.

Ceiling Fans – What They Do

Ceiling fans do not cool the air the way an air-conditioner does. Instead, they move around the air inside the room and blow the air all over the place so that a steady breeze is created. People within the room keep their cool through sweating and evaporation. In hot weather, your body sweats a lot in an attempt to cool off. Ceiling fans help your body cool off by blowing the air on you and evaporating the sweat.

Ceiling Fan in Apartment

Ceiling fans just move around the air that is already there in the room, so if you have allowed the room to heat up because you’ve not weather proofed your windows and ceilings, the fan will just blow down hot air on you and make you feel hotter. To make sure that all residents get maximum benefits from their ceiling fans, ensure that every residence in your housing society uses sun reflective covers on the windows and weather proofs the roof.

Ceiling Fan Buying Tips

Fans now come in a wide variety of colors and styles. You can get fans with lights, decorative fans, simple but aesthetic and efficient fans, you name it. Gone are the days when you had to go out and buy a three bladed white ceiling fan that weighed about a ton. Now, you can shop around for fans that will add to your interior décor, and make you feel cool in more ways than one.

  • Look for the Noise Factor – Inexpensive fans do not incorporate noise reducing features.  So switching on a ceiling fan can make you want to use ear plugs to shut out the noise. Make sure your fan has noise suppression built in.
  • Consider the Blade Pitch – Look for a good blade pitch. The blade pitch is the angle of the blade in relation to the fan. This helps to move the air effectively.  A blade pitch of 10 or twelve degrees is considered good.
  • The Importance of the Motor – The fan’s motor should match the blade pitch and length. That is, it should be bigger if the blade has a higher pitch and the blade is longer. There is no point in buying a fan with a good pitch and blade length, if the motor can’t run it well.
  • Choose a Good Fan Size – Ceiling fan sizes are measured from the tip of one blade to the tip of the opposite blade. Size should be an important factor in buying a ceiling fan. The size of the room, how clear the space is, how high the ceiling is should all be taken into consideration. Generally, for your living room, buy a larger fan. Get a medium sized fan for your bedroom. Buy smaller sizes for kitchen or the bathroom.
  • The Down Rod – Match the size of the down rod to the height of the ceiling. If you have a high ceiling, you are going to need a longer down rod for the fan to be effective. Don’t make the fan hang too low. Someone could accidentally put up their hand and get it caught in the rotating blades.
  • Ceiling Fan Controls – Fans generally come with a wall mount dial control for controlling speed. Newer fans can also come with a remote control. Comes in handy in bedrooms if you have a faulty design of the electrical wiring where you need to get out of the bed to reach the switch board
  • Lights or No Lights – If your fan comes with light fixtures, make sure the fixture can accept CFL bulbs.

Saving Electricity With Ceiling Fans

Using ceiling fans is a good way to cut down on power consumption. When it is comparatively cooler, you can switch off the AC and use the fan. You can also supplement the functioning of the AC with a ceiling fan’s ability to rotate the cooled air and spread it around the room. Also, once the AC has cooled down the room, you can switch it off and use the fan for a while. The housing society association can highlight the importance of having ceiling fans by promoting their power saving factor.


This article aims at collating and providing information for benefit of ApnaComplex customers and blog readers. While ApnaComplex has taken every care to ensure the information is accurate, we suggest to please use it only as a guidance for further discussion and action with help of relevant professionals.

ApnaComplex is India’s most comprehensive and value-for-money housing society / apartment accounting and management software. Read what some of our customers say about ApnaComplex and its features. There is a a 30-day no obligation free trial for every complex. Go ahead and register your complex and see how you can manage your complex more easily, efficiently, and effectively.

Housing Society Summer Routine – How to Maintain A Cool Lifestyle

If you’re trying to find ways to beat the heat and stay cool in your housing society during the summer, there are many simple methods you can opt for. These lifestyle changes are easy to implement, and they can be followed by every resident in the housing society.

Staying cool during summer in a housing society 

Wear Light Cloths

Wear light natural fabrics like cotton, as these are made especially for the Indian summer. Make sure they are light colored too as dark colors absorb heat and can make you sweat. Summer is the time you can buy and flaunt bouncy colors like orange and cyan, so get a vibrant wardrobe.

Open the Windows

If there’s a cool breeze blowing, open the window to let it in. A housing society will be a well planned structure, so that the breeze travels in an even manner through every building. All you need to do is throw open the windows (for cross ventilation), pull down the mosquito nets and turn on the ceiling fan, which will regulate the air flow.

Use Ventilators

Ventilators are a must in every household, mainly in the kitchen. The last thing you want during the summer is cooking vapors hanging around the house, making you sweaty. Ventilators can keep the stuffy air out and let the cool air in.

Drink Fluids

Remember, your body dehydrates quickly in warm weather. So, drink a lot of water and fresh juices regularly, whenever you can. Carry a bottle of water along with you wherever you go, so that you remain hydrated properly.

Soak Your Shirts

If there is no cool breeze and you have worked up a sweat, you can try this one out. If you can stand it, soak your shirt in water (avoid cold water) wring it out and put it on. Now switch on the fan and sit under it. If your shirt dries up, soak it again. Keep the windows open while doing this or otherwise, the rising vapors from your shirt will increase the humidity.

Use Sunscreen and Hats

Wearing sunscreen can help you keep your skin normal, and you can pick out some hats for the summer too. Hats can keep you cool while serving as great fashion accessories.

Cool Your Body

Let cold water run over your wrists for a few seconds. This can make you feel cooler. You can also fill a tub with cold water and plop your feet in it. Once your feet get cold, you probably will too. Soak a handkerchief in cold water; wring it out and place it on the back of your neck, and this is one proven measure that works well. Take frequent baths during hot days, as a cold shower can do wonders.

Use Your Housing Society Pool

If your housing society has a pool, use it. It will be a great summer hangout, and you can cool down in the water while striking up a conversation with the other residents in the housing society.

Staying cool through the hot days of summer can be challenging. Find some fun ideas to beat the heat. Remember to take lots of drinks during summer, to prevent your body from getting dehydrated.

By the way, if you have pets, do realize they will feel the heat too. Trim your dog’s coat. Keep them supplied with fresh water, and if they are outside, make sure that cool shady areas are available where they can lie down to escape the heat.


ApnaComplex is a web based housing society accounting, management and communication software. It is designed to make the life of residents and owners a lot better by bringing in more transparency and accountability in managing a housing society. Check out the features of ApnaComplex and sign up your society today to get the benefits!


Braving Summer Heat – Preventing Summer Stress and Handling Heat Related Injuries

Summer is here and almost every one is facing the heat already. Even traditionally cooler cities like Bangalore are seeing temperatures rise year after year. We have put together a small list of preventive measures that can followed by every one in your society and also some first aid techniques that can applied in case any one becomes a victim of heat related injury.
Being Cool in Summer

Preventing Summer Stress

Hot weather triggers a variety of medical emergencies. Even healthy people should take it easy during extremely high temperatures, and those with respiratory and other health problems must be especially careful. The best ways to prevent a sun stress emergency are:

  • May appear very basic, but first stay out of the sun as much as possible.
  • Drink extra fluids, but avoid alcoholic beverages. Alcohol can cause dehydration.
  • Drink before you’re thirsty and drink often.
  • Wear a hat or cap, keep the neck covered and wear loose fitting clothing. It’s important to wear a hat because it prevents heat load by acting as a barrier from the heat source (normally the sun). Cooling the head and neck may be an effective means of reducing core body temperature in those with heat stress.
  • If you can, work in the cool hours of the day or evening.

Heat-related Injuries and First Aid Measures

It is important to know that heat-related injuries fall into three major categories:

  • Heat cramps
  • Heat exhaustion
  • Heatstroke

Heat cramps are muscular pains and spasms that occur when the body loses electrolytes during profuse sweating or when inadequate electrolytes are taken into the body. They usually begin in the arms, legs or abdomen, and often precede heat exhaustion.

Treatment for heat cramps is to rest in the shade, get near a fan, spray the person with water and massage the cramp.

Heat exhaustion is a medical emergency. When a person is suffering from heat exhaustion, they will perspire profusely and most likely will be pale.

It is best treated by taking the patient to a cool place, applying cool compresses, elevating the feet and giving the patient fluids.

Heat stroke is the worst heat-related injury. The brain has lost its ability to regulate body temperature. The patient will be hot, reddish and warm to the touch. Their temperature will be markedly high and there will be no perspiration. This is a medical emergency, call Toll Free No 108.

The emergency care of heatstroke is to cool the body as quickly as possible. One of the best methods for cooling the body during a heat emergency is to wrap the patient in cool, wet sheets.


Credits: This article was provided by APMS, Hyderabad.


This article aims at collating and providing information for benefit of ApnaComplex customers and blog readers. While ApnaComplex has taken every care to ensure the information is accurate, we suggest to please use it only as a guidance and not as any professional medical advise. Please consult relevant professionals to take any action based on the guidelines given.