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[ Light Up Your Life: Tips for Efficient Lighting ]

Light Up Your Life:
Tips for Efficient Lighting

Bulbs

Bin im Garten / Wikimedia Commons

 

Ever since George W.
Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) of 2007 which
boosted efficiency standards for lighting, consumers have seen a surge
in light bulb choices, from halogen
incandescent bulbs
 and LEDs,
to CFLs.

As the law is implemented over the next few years, prices for energy efficient bulbs are dropping. Here are some tips for lighting up your life with less energy:

  • Find the
    right fit
    . Use this fun interactive website
    from Energy Star
    to see which bulbs can be used in which fixture types,
    including 3-way and dimmable options. This handy comparison
    chart
    from bulbrite also allows you to pick the right replacement for your
    existing bulbs.
  • Halogen
    Incandescent? LED? CFL?
    From an efficiency standpoint, LEDs are the best
    option. They also achieve full brightness instantly and work well with dimmers.
    Although the sticker price is still well above other options, prices are going
    down and they can last over twice as long as CFLs. Read this field
    test of LEDs
    to choose the best option. 
  • Check for
    the Energy Star label
    . Without the Energy Star label, manufacturer’s claims
    aren’t verified. Be sure you see the blue star label on bulbs you purchase.
  • Meet
    Lumens
    . With efficient bulbs, the amount of energy it takes to light a room
    is less important than the amount of light it produces. “Lumens” is a measure
    of this light and is labeled on new bulbs. To learn how to decipher a bulb’s
    lumens rating, watch
    this video
    .
  • Recycle
    CFLs
    . Because of their mercury content, many jurisdictions require you to
    recycle CFLs. Use this guide
    from the Environmental Protection Agency to find a facility near you. Many
    retailers like Home Depot and Ace Hardware also offer CFL recycling
    on-site.   
  • Light the
    future
    . New lightning technology is working seamlessly with smartphone
    apps, like this program from
    Smart Home Labs that lets you control your LEDs from your phone or tablet.
  • Bust some
    lighting myths
    . Incandescent bulbs being banned? Not so. Visit the Lumen
    Collation website
    to bust this and other common myths around new light bulb
    standards.

 

Want more guidance
about purchasing energy-efficient, money-saving bulbs for your home? Check out
this handy resource
from EarthShare member charity NRDC before you replace
your bulbs!

 

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