Lighting Choices That Save You Money
Your electricity bill can be a big blow to your finances. In order to save you some monthly green, and help lower your footprint, below is a list of a few secrets to savings on lighting for residential homes.
- Solar Power Lights - Installing solar powered lights is a good way to save some cash. The lights use sunlight for power and charge during the day. Since they don't require wiring, the lights can go anywhere on your property. Some solar powered lights also come with motion detectors.
- Dimmer Switches - A burning light bulb uses a certain amount of electricity, which is measured in watts. By lowering the wattage with a special switch, consumers can manage the bulb's electrical consumption. Dimmers come with a dial or a slide bar, which allows homeowners to adjust the wattage and thus the amount of illumination. Just how much energy dimmer switches save depends on many factors, including how much and how long a person dims the light, and the type of light bulbs in the fixture. Dimmers save the most money in rooms where wattage is high, such as the bathroom, kitchen and dining room.
- Turn the (Non-Fluorescent) Lights Off - Almost everybody was brought up with the belief that you can save money by simply turning the lights off when not in use. Fluorescent bulbs are a bit more complicated. According the U.S. Department of Energy, if you're leaving a room for more than 15 minutes, turn out the lights. If not, keep the lights on. Why? Fluorescent lights are more expensive, and like other bulbs, switching them on and off limits their life. It's better to eat the additional energy cost than to continually buy new fluorescent bulbs.
- Buy Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs - Three of the most common energy-efficient light bulbs are halogen incandescents, CFLs, and LEDs. You can find these in most hardware and home improvement stores.
- Halogen incandescents - have a capsule inside that holds gas around a filament to increase bulb efficiency. They are available in a wide range of shapes and colors, and they can be used with dimmers. Halogen incandescent bulbs meet the federal minimum energy efficiency standard, but there are now many more efficient options to meet your lighting needs.
- Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) are simply curly versions of the long tube fluorescent lights you may already have in a kitchen or garage. Because they use less electricity than traditional incandescents, typical CFLs can pay for themselves in less than nine months, and then start saving you money each month.
- The light emitting diode (LED) are a type of solid-state lighting -- semiconductors that convert electricity into light. Although once known mainly for indicator and traffic lights, LEDs in white light, general illumination applications are one of today's most energy-efficient and rapidly-developing technologies.
â€‹These are just a handful of simple strategies that homeowners may be able do themselves to save money. There are many other lighting installation options to choose from that can save you money including motion detectors, recessed lighting and skylights.
Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2014. All rights reserved.