Lighting consumes 10% of the average American home’s utility bill so using energy-efficient lighting strategies can reduce the average home’s lighting costs significantly. Here are some tips to help increase energy efficiency.
- Use task lights: task lights only illuminate the area in use instead of lighting up the entire area and thus save energy. So, if you want to read a book, use a lamp instead. Apply the same idea when you’re in the kitchen or any other room of the house.
- Change your bulbs: incandescent bulbs use a lot of energy and can be replaced by various kinds of energy efficient bulbs. Here are a few examples:
- Compact Florescent Lights (CFLs): CFLs produce the same amount of light as regular incandescent bulbs but use 75% less energy. These bulbs also last 8 to 10 times longer.
- High efficiency halogen lights: you can replace a 100-watt incandescent bulb with a 72-watt or 70-watt halogen bulb or replace a 60-watt incandescent bulb with a 42-watt or 40-watt halogen bulb and still get the same amount of light.
- Light Emitting Diode: (LED) bulbs are the most energy-efficient and long-lasting types of light bulbs. You can replace a 60-watt incandescent bulb with a 12-watt LED that will last more than 20,000 hours, or about 10 years.
- Don’t shop for watts, shop for lumens: lumens are the amount of light a bulb produces while watts are the amount of electricity it consumes. Energy efficient bulbs use fewer watts and produce more lumens. For example a, 12 watt LED bulb can provide the same amount of light (lumens) as a 60 watt incandescent bulb.
- Use fewer high wattage lights: instead of using four 25 watt bulbs, it is more energy efficient to use one 100 watt bulb. A 100 watt bulb gives 50% more light than four 25 watt bulbs. Using higher wattage bulbs will give you more light and will also save you energy.
- Add lamps to your décor: wherever possible, add floor lamps, standing lamps, hanging lamps or table lamps around your home. This way, by using only one or two bulbs, you can brighten up an area and you don’t need to light up an entire room.
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