Category Archives for Electrical

Shine a Light, Inspiration for Lighting Your Home

Lighting Inspiration for the Home


Looking for some Lighting Ideas?

Lighting should be as individual as you are, reflecting your personality, even mood. Below are some ideas to get the juices flowing from other sites we found around the web. Planning your lighting is as important as the colours you choose, perhaps even more so as they are likely to stay in place longer. Think about where the natural light comes into a room first of all and work to create focal points. Then think about the room at night and how you want your lighting to be, the mood it should set and what you want to illuminate.

If you want to go with some out of the box looks, then check these ideas out:

Wood Bend Light Grater Light Jim Beam Light Hanging Rope Light Spiderman Skateboard Light Stair Lights


The image links above will take you to the original sites, but as you can see, lighting does not have to be ‘traditional’ hanging single bulb and shade, its up to you to explore your own imagination and think about what would make the illumination individual to you and your family.

If you have some wonderful lighting in your home, take a picture and upload and then send us a link in your comments below so we can take a look and share with our other readers!

Do you use Solar Energy?

What items in your home are using the most electricity?

Solar Power Geysers

According to an article on homemakersonline the top use goes to your geyser!
Energy Use is South Africa

Did you know that its more energy efficient to use a kettle to heat water for cooking than a pan on the stove? Did you also know that in many homes, lighting accounts for 17-20% of energy consumption?

The South African government and Eskom are making drives to encourage Solar Heating in homes to help take the load off the ever burdened grid. With ever increasing prices, people are also keen to find alternatives to grid power in their homes.

Above video is from eTV back in 2013.

This young boy below enjoys tinkering with designs to get energy efficient water to his home.


Have you installed Solar Power in your home? Perhaps a Solar Geyser?

Let us know how that is working out for you so far. Do you feel its saving you money and improving your own efficiency?

Power Tools on Sale at Hot Pot

We introduced a new Ryobi Range of Power Tools back at the beginning of 2013 and its proven to be a popular choice so far with our customers. If you are looking to do a spot of D.I.Y and need some power help, then drop in store and check out the Ryobi range that we now stock.

From Impact Drills to Power Screw Drivers and Sanders, we have quite a large selection for you to choose from.

Ryobi Power Tools

Ryobi Tools at Hot Pot


If you like other brands, then why not tell us about them and why you love them so much 🙂 If we end up stocking your preferred brand at a later date, you may win a free power tool on us! So feel free to make your suggestions below. Please give details and remember to include your email to your post (not in the comment, just on the form) so we can get back to you if you are a lucky winner at a later date.

Tell us the brand name, specific tools you love and why you prefer that particular brand. Also give us a little note on why  you think we should stock them. Who knows, you may well have a power tool wing its way over to you as a thanks for the recommendation if we begin to stock that line.

We always appreciate feedback as it helps us to serve you better!

Solar Powered Geysers

A Basic Solar Heating System uses a hot water tank and then solar panels to
heat the water. The water moves between collectors whilst the warming sunshine
heats it, and then it goes to be stored in an insulated tank.

Most systems are fitted with a back up electrical heating element and the temperature
is controlled with a thermostat in case the heat from the sun in insufficient.

You often find temperatures will be around the 50degrees mark, which is plenty
warm enough for bathing, washing and general demands for hot water in your home.

Solar geysers tend to be much larger than a conventional geyser because they need to
warm all the water you will consume over a 18-24 hour period, where as an electrical
geyser will heat what you need as you need it in many cases, which means it can be
much smaller capacity.

A typical family of 4+ will require a 300 gallon tank. You can get away with a 200 litre
but you would need to be very careful on the water you use, and better to take showers
rather than the whole family using the bath.

The great thing about a solar geyser is the fact that you can see instant reductions in
your monthly electricity bill. Power for heating water can be anything from 30-50% of
your monthly electric spend, so it is not uncommon for a family of four to save around
R300-R500 per month.

With the Eskom Rebate scheme, the time to buy is now. It will also help you protect
from the ongoing price hikes we are seeing year on year.

You can read more on Eskom’s web site:

Shop around when considering Solar Heating. Take a look at local houses near to you and
drop in and ask who they purchased from, is it working, are they happy with the service
provided etc. Check out promotions on TV and Radio, and even contact Eskom for a local
list of suppliers that they support and give rebates on.

If you would like a standard water geyser, then give Hot Pot Paint a call for more information
on Geysers we can supply you with, either for your own home or for bulk trade accounts.

We have many deals for bulk contract purchases, and always have bargains in store
for our domestic customers. Have a coffee whilst you are in store, and feel free to ask
for our advice if you need it. We are here to make your life easier.

Solar Energy – Passive Heating

Article Courtesy of

Passive solar heating is one of the most efficient ways to heat any building. Usually the amount of solar power reaching your building is greater than the energy being used inside, which means that you have the potential to use this energy effectively.

The building itself acts as the solar collector, unlike a mechanical system, which is a completely separate system. In this way, the passive solar heating system actually adds little to the initial cost of the construction. The home or office increases in value, the system requires very little maintenance, and is generally trouble free. For a minimum of extra work, passive solar heat can help reduce your energy costs. Yet you sacrifice nothing in terms of comfort and convenience.

An alternate heating source is still necessary, but you will notice a dramatic decrease in your heating bills. Because the structure is the solar panel, as well as the distribution system, it is extremely efficient. During the daytime, the windows allow the heat to be absorbed by the walls and floors, or other heat sinks. Then, during the cool of the night, the heat is released into the living area.

Requirements for passive solar heating

Engineers and builders have learned the best way to orient the house to the sun, which angle of the roof is most advantageous, etc. You need to have a clear, unobstructed exposure to the sun, which in the Northern Hemisphere is obviously the south. Even partial shade can drastically reduce the efficiency of the system.

Another important prerequisite is that the construction materials must be able to absorb the heat of the sun and later release it. The building can be the collector, or you can use other structures to absorb the sunlight.

Designing a passive solar heating system

You must consider the climate where you live, and the lay of the land where your building sits. It makes no difference if a certain type of system works in Arizona if you live in Maine!

Gaining heat directly

Direct gain is the simplest type of passive solar heating. The heat of the sun is soaked up by the building, right to the core of the structure. Later, this heat is naturally released into the living area. You should be able to heat your home for several days this way, provided you do not have much heat loss from windows, poor insulation, etc.

Gaining heat indirectly

This is one step above the direct gain system. You place structures or objects between the sun and your living area. These absorb the heat of the sun and use a natural convection system to distribute the heat throughout the house. These areas are closed off and can reach very high temperatures. The airs flows naturally from top to bottom because of the temperature difference at the floor and ceiling.

During the night the air vents can be sealed off the stop heat loss. By closing the vents the convection process is not allow to reverse and steal your precious heat by taking it back to the area with the collectors. The heated wall also radiates warmth into the living area, much like a heated fireplace wall.

Gaining heat by isolation

Isolated gain of solar heat means that an external solar panel is used to collect heat. Natural convection causes the fluids in the solar panel to flow into a storage area. Later, the heat is transferred from the storage to the living area. It is necessary that the solar panel is lower than the storage area, and the storage area must be below the living area. If not, there will be not natural convection and a pump will be required. You would then not have a true passive solar heating system.

In conclusion, with some thoughtful planning during the construction stage, a passive solar heating system can be a highly effective method of heating any building.

Randy Hough, Jon Arnett and company have been involved with energy saving programs for many years in such places as Alaska, Wisconsin, Norway and Croatia. Recently they constructed a passive and active solar heated villa in Croatia, which is beautiful and efficient at the same time (plus it is right on the Adriadic Sea). Check out their website: to help you in your quest for reducing your energy dependence. Find out how you can save money, save energy, and save the earth!

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