Tips To Help You Find the Right Energy Efficient Light Bulb and Why Making a Change Is Smart

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Do you know the difference between LEDs and lumens? If not, don’t worry – you aren’t alone. Also, just because you are not familiar with the jargon doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of all the benefits of energy-efficient light bulbs, such as the mr16 bulb.

With lighting making up about 15% of your home’s energy costs, switching to energy-efficient bulbs is one way to reduce these costs.

However, not all energy-efficient bulbs are created equal. Use the tips and advice here to ensure you get the right bulb for your home and needs.

Consider the Fit of the Bulb

While this may seem obvious, it’s a crucial factor to consider when choosing the right bulb. Do you need a wide or slim screw? Should the bulb be dimmable or not? Is a thin or fat bayonet required?

You can find all types of shapes and sizes. Because of this, it’s a good idea to know what you need before you start shopping. If possible, take the old bulb with you to ensure you get the right replacement.

Choose LEDs To Reduce Costs

LED bulbs are more affordable than they were in the past, but they are still more expensive than other options. If you don’t have the money to spend on LEDs right now, consider more energy-efficient alternatives, such as CFLs or Compact Fluorescent Lamps.

If you have CFLs at home, you know they take more time to warm up; however, this isn’t as much of a problem as it used to be. While CFLs are less efficient than LED bulbs, they are more affordable. They are also cheaper than most halogen bulbs.

Consider Your Space

When it comes to choosing a light for your room, be sure to look at the packaging. If you have an older system, you are in luck. Most of the light bulb packaging available still shows the equivalent of 40 watts to 100 watts or higher.

Just remember, wattage isn’t a reflection of how bright older bulbs are. Instead, it just shows the energy the bulb uses. While new LED bulbs are just eight to 10 watts; however, they are just as bright as traditional bulbs.

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Today, the brightness of bulbs is measured in lumens. A regular, 60-watt incandescent bulb is the same as 700+ lumens. Sometimes the package shows the Color Rendering Index or CRI score. This shows the impact of alight on color and is rated on a scale that goes from 0 to 100. 

It’s best to find anything rated over 80 to ensure the colors in your home look the same as they would in daylight.

Halogens Are on Their Way Out

Your parents grew up using incandescent bulbs. These have been phased out completely today. What you may not realize is that halogens aren’t that far behind.

Determine Your Savings

Today, the average home has more than 40 light sockets. If you add up all the bulbs used to light your space, you will probably come up with a similar number. If you purchase all LED bulbs to replace your incandescent ones, you can save over $100 annually. If every household in the United States phased out incandescent bulbs for halogens, it would save more than $12 billion each year.

Change Your Bulbs

If you are still using halogen or incandescent bulbs, it’s recommended that you replace these with LEDs before they burn out. The exception is older bulbs in the basement, closet, or other places that aren’t used very often.

LEDs are the ideal option for one-to-one replacement of an incandescent bulb. They do everything an incandescent bulb can, with just one exception – they aren’t wasting energy and costing you more money.

If you have CFLs installed and are happy with these, continue using them until they die. That’s because LEDs are just a little more efficient. However, if you don’t like the CFLs because they are dim or if the light is unflattering, now is a good time to change them out.

Disposing of Your Old Bulbs

There are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to getting rid of your old bulbs. You can throw out halogen and incandescent light bulbs because they don’t contain hazardous materials. Because of the small amounts of mercury that are used to make CFLs, however, they have to be disposed of differently.

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For these, seal the bulb into a plastic bag and take it to a recycling center or hardware store.

When LEDs burn out, you can throw those in the trash, too. That’s because they aren’t made with hazardous materials. Since LED bulbs are made with some electronics in the base part, they may be recyclable down the road if new systems are created to dispose of the materials.

Taking Action

Legislation related to light bulbs matters. It is so important that President George W. Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act in 2007 that outlined minimum efficiency standards. These would eventually be used to replace all inefficient bulbs in the more than six billion sockets across the country.

The direct result of this when the initial rules went into effect in 2012 is that millions of people began switching their incandescent lights for halogen bulbs. This was good, as they used 28% less power.

Making an Energy Efficient Change in Your Home’s Lighting

As you can see, there are more than a few options to change the bulbs in your home and make them more efficient. Knowing what options you have is the first step in saving money and positively impacting the environment.

While it can take some time to change all the bulbs in your house, it is doable. You should start small and replace old bulbs as they burn out with newer, more energy-efficient options. Doing so will provide you with many benefits and let you enjoy all the above benefits. Keep this in mind as you begin making changes to your home and replacing inefficient elements with more efficient ones.