A lot of homeowners are unscrewing their incandescent bulbs and going for more efficient lighting options. The truth is that having a bunch of old bulbs burning in your home can result in higher energy bills and it can widen your carbon footprint. These days, bulbs are using a number of technologies to provide great lighting – at a fraction of the energy used by incandescent bulbs. When it comes down to it, many people may have a hard time making the switch – mainly because they believe energy efficient lighting doesn’t look as warm. The truth is, however, that efficient lighting can be just as warm and beautiful as incandescence. Here are some energy efficient lighting system basics for homeowners.
- Choose one type of energy efficient lighting. There are many different types of energy efficient lighting. You have fluorescent lighting, LED lighting, LPS lighting – and even HID lighting. All of these systems will have unique benefits and disadvantages – from price to durability and even efficiency. Before you make the switch, you want to do your research and become familiar with each technology.
- Be prepared to invest in energy efficient lighting. Most energy efficient lighting will cost you a little bit of money. The bulbs use newer technology and are much more expensive than incandescent bulbs. If you plan on switching your entire home, you can be prepared to make a serious investment. Of course, though, this investment will pay off. Not only do energy efficient bulbs last much longer – significantly longer than incandescent bulbs – but they will also keep your energy costs way down, so you may actually be getting a deal.
- Choose a warmth level. As energy efficient lighting progresses, bulb manufacturers are coming out with unique options for warmth and brightness levels. There is no denying that incandescent bulbs have a certain romance to them – this is because there is a mini fire burning in the bulb. However, you can achieve this similar look and feel with some LED or HID bulbs. If you want to go for a brighter look and feel, you may want to go with a brighter and whiter bulb.
- Use low-pressure sodium lighting for garage lighting. If you spend a lot of time in the garage or if you use your garage as a studio, you may want to think of using low-pressure sodium lighting. These bulbs burn bright and hot, but they are vastly more energy efficient than incandescent bulbs. Plus, these bulbs will provide much more light for your workshop. It should also be noted that you do not want to use these bulbs for security lighting – especially security lighting with a motion sensor.
- Prepare for a wait. Most energy efficient lighting takes a while to warm up. For instance, high-intensity discharge lighting, or HID, takes about ten minutes to warm up and provide ample lighting. The pay off, however, is that these bulbs can save up to 90% of energy and they will save you a lot of money on your monthly energy bill.