If you live in a cold part of the world, such as northern Scotland, Norway, Canada, Alaska or Russia, it is best to make the exterior of your home dark.
If you live in a warm climate, such as Texas, Australia, Florida, or Jamaica, or Hawaii, it is best to make the exterior of your home white. The roof of your home is the best place to start.
By painting your home a dark color in a cold climate, your home will absorb more heat energy from the sun’s rays. This can substantially reduce your home’s heating energy needs and resultant greenhouse gas emissions.
By painting your home a light color in a cold climate, your home will reflect more of the sun’s rays, keeping it naturally cooler, and therefore reducing the energy required for fans or air conditioning.
The same concept applies to materials. Use dark colored materials in a cold climate and light colored materials in a warm climate. There is a new product on the market called Super Therm White Roof which is an insulated ceramic coating which reflects 95% of 3 forms of sunlight, dramatically reducing the amount of heat that gets into homes.
Inside your home, try to keep walls white, since white walls reflect light, thereby reducing the need for artificial lighting.
For more great green living tips, return to Go Green Zine.