According to the Environmental Protection Agency, lighting accounts for up to 20% of the energy use in an average American home. This amount, along with your utility bills, can be easily reduced through some simple actions.
Replace your old incandescent light bulbs with Compact Florescent Lights (CFLs).
Our choices in how we light our homes can have positive effects on our health, community, economy and environment.
Traditional incandescent bulbs lose most of their energy through heat with only about 10% of their energy going towards lighting a room.
CFLs use about 75% less power and last at about three times longer.
Even though a CFL costs more to purchase than an incandescent lamp, it will save far more that its original price over the years of use.
- ENERGY STAR® estimates that if you change one bulb you can save $40 or more over the lifetime of the bulb.
- If you change five bulbs you could save $200 or more over their lifetime
- Especially when you replace lights that are on a lot with CFLs – outdoor lights, kitchen lights, etc.
Don’t let the initial cost of a CFL keep you from making this important change.
- Although the average cost of an incandescent bulb is around 50¢ with a CFL averaging $3.00, over the course of a CFL’s lifetime you would have used 10 incandescents. This equates to $5.00 for the same amount of lighting time as the $3.00 CFL. This doesn’t include the 75% reduction in energy usage which means additional savings.
- Some are concerned with the health hazards of CFLs due to the very small amount of mercury they contain. If a bulb is broken in your home, the cleanup is simple and safe.
- For information on cleaning up a broken CFL visit the EPA’s site on Compact Fluorescent Bulbs.
Turn off the lights in rooms that you aren’t using.
Another easy way to save on lighting costs and electricity is to simply turn off the lights in your home when you aren’t using them.
Just like it has become a habit to leave the lights on, you can easily develop the habit for yourself and your family of flipping the switch and turning the lights off.
If you need to have exterior lighting throughout the night, put motion sensors on the lights. This will keep the lights off when not needed, keep the light out of your neighbors’ houses and reduce light pollution. In addition, a light suddenly coming on will startle a trespasser.