Take Life by the Bulbs!
The US Department of Energy estimates that swift implementation of Light Emitting Diodes LEDs would save $265 billion over the next 20 years. An average household can cut costs by about $45 per bulb over the course of its lifetime. The switch to LED lighting would also eliminate the need to build new power plants and could prevent tons of greenhouse gases from entering the atmosphere. Despite such evidence, less efficient lighting is still the most popular source for most homes and businesses according to a 2015 Residential Energy Consumption Survey.
Since 2012, most traditional incandescent bulbs have been phased out of the market. In their place are halogen incandescent bulbs that are about 25% more energy efficient, extremely inexpensive to buy and popular due to the warm, dimmable and flattering light they emit. Second in popularity are Compact Fluorescent Lighting (CFLs) which are slightly more expensive than incandescent bulbs but are up to 75% more efficient and can also provide similar color effects. Check out our comparison between LED and CFL.
But let’s face it, these bulbs are far from the solution for a lot of consumers when we consider the significantly greater cost vs the energy savings from LEDs. Sure, traditional light bulbs are cheap to buy, but the electricity used over the lifetime of a single incandescent bulb costs 5 to 10 times the original purchase price of the bulb itself. Talk about false advertising. Additionally, the common misconception that LEDs are too bright for home use, and don’t accurately portray colors is based on old data. The latest LED technology offers bulbs for every room, mood & setting, and now come in most bulb shapes and sizes for different uses. So let’s move past tradition and focus on present and future innovation: LEDs.
LED FEATURES & BENEFITS
LED COLOR, BRIGHTNESS & TONE
- LED TONE options range between warm mood lighting and cool task lighting depending on the Correlated Color Temperature CCT (measured in Kelvins)
- Pro Shopping Tip: Select 2700K for warm lighting and 5000K for cool lighting.
- LED BRIGHTNESS options cover all home lighting needs depending on the Lumen measurement NOT the wattage (a common misconception).
- Pro Shopping Tip: The higher the lumens, the brighter the bulb.
- LED COLOR ACCURACY is reflected in the Color Rendering Index (CRI).
- Pro Shopping Tip: CRI should be a minimum of 80+ and ideally 100 for the best accuracy. This is especially important for bathroom lighting.
- LEDs come in many dimmable options.
- LEDs lighting is available as diffused (spread out) for mood lighting or focused (single direction) for task lighting such as reading.
- Bulb colors are available in red, green, blue, white and amber, and now even multi-color smart bulbs for wider color options.
LED CONSUMER BENEFITS (as compared to CFLs and incandescent lighting)
- Energy Star certified LEDs are 90% more efficient than incandescent bulbs
- 12W LEDs lasts up to 25,000 hours or 10 times as long as CFLs
- LEDs cumulatively save thousands of dollars over a lifetime of use
- LEDs do not produce heat buildup, helping to reduce AC costs & energy waste
- LEDs are free of toxic mercury (found in CFLs)
- LEDs use only 2-17 watts of energy
- Low wattage LEDs makes solar power (or any power source) go further
- LEDs can replace nearly any traditional style bulb
- LEDs are available in tubes, panels, string lights, flame tip, recessed, track lights & dimmables—oh my!
LED ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS
- Simply replacing one incandescent bulb with a CFL may prevent a half-ton of CO2 from releasing into the atmosphere over the life of the bulb.
- If all Americans used energy-efficient lighting, we could reduce CO2 emissions, sulfur oxide and high-level nuclear waste.
We hope the benefits of LED lighting are clear but we also understand that the initial higher cost makes a difference when shopping for lighting. Luckily some local utility agencies offer free or subsidized high-efficiency bulbs to help promote rapid adoption. The staff at Liberty Power loves partnering with these progressive utility agencies wherever possible, because technological innovation, cost savings and energy efficiency is what we are all about!
Learn more about Liberty’s Green-e Options.
Article Credit: Elena Schmidt