How To: Cut Your Electric Bill
Upgrade Your Lighting
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Types of Lightbulbs:
- classic, inexpensive lighting. Contains a wire filament that heats when electrical current passes through causing it to glow and give off light.
- inefficient: incandescent bulbs convert less than 5% of the energy they use into visible light with the remainder dissipating as heat.
- Typical wattage: 60-120 watts / 14.3 lumens per watt
Compact Fluorescent Lighting:
- CFLs use one-fifth to one-third the electric power, and last eight to fifteen times longer.
- A CFL has a higher purchase price than an incandescent lamp, but can save over five times its purchase price in electricity costs over the lamp’s lifetime.
- Not great for extreme temperatures
- Typical wattage: 14 watts / 55.4 lumens per watt
- contains a light emitting diode that is encased in the light bulb. LED lamps have a lifespan and efficiency that is several times better than incandescent bulbs, and significantly better than most CFLs, with some chips able to emit more than 100 lumens per watt.
- Typical wattage: 9 watts / 84 lumens per watt
Simply replacing the typical four 40 watt incandescent lighting in a ceiling fan to 4 compact fluorescent bulbs saves 132 watts. That really adds up over time, particularly over the extended lifespan of a CFL (which often come with a manufacturer warranty).
Ceiling Fan Fix:
Some ceiling fans may flicker when a full set of compact fluorescent lights are substituted for incandescent bulbs. To fix this, use compact fluorescent bulbs for all but one socket. Use one incandescent bulb for the remaining light. Despite the use of one incandescent, you’ll still be saving a significant amount of electricity.
If you are unable to completely upgrade your lighting by replacing each bulb in your home, start with the most frequently used areas in your house and save areas like closets, which only use light for short periods of time, for last.
Looking for More Ways to Save on Your Utility Bill?:
Check out our How to: Cut Your Electric Bill video series below