Home Improvement – Are Energy Efficient Light Bulbs Worth It?

It’s a fact: the average American home is responsible for as much (or more than), twice the greenhouse gas emissions as the average car. If every American house replaced just five of their most used light fixtures or bulbs with more energy efficient ones, the nation would save $8 billion a year on energy cost, not to mention the savings to individuals for bulb replacement and higher electric bills. That’s without ever turning off a light! Plus, it would save as many greenhouse gasses from entering and destroying our atmosphere as the emission of 10 million cars! And that’s every single year!

While many of the original energy efficient bulbs sold on the market suffered from low voltage, causing unpopular shadows and dimness in homes, today’s new energy efficient light fixtures and bulbs are just as bright as their traditional counterparts. They may cost a little more (about $8 compared to about 75 cents for a standard light bulb), but they use close to 75% less energy on a daily basis and are designed to last for as long as a decade, eliminating the need to purchase replacement bulbs every few weeks or months, which can cost hundreds less over a ten-yea period of time.

That, coupled with a substantial decrease in monthly utility bills, depending on how many bulbs are replaced, can yield a substantial savings over the life of one of these 10-year energy efficient bulb.

To save the most energy and money, energy experts agree that it’s important to replace your highest used fixtures or the light bulbs first. Some of the highest use fixtures in a typical American home include:

  • Kitchen ceiling lights.
  • Living or family room table and floor lamps.
  • Outdoor porch and post lamps.
  • Security lights.
  • Hall lights.
  • Bathroom fixtures.
  • Garage and basement lights that remain on throughout the night.
  • Decorative lighting.
  • Foyer chandelier.

Many different varieties and style of low-energy replacement bulbs and fixtures can be found at any home improvement and hardware stores, lighting showrooms, and other retail stores, including on-line outlets. They range from high-end decorative bulbs that can be used in open chandeliers and fixtures to a more standard bulb that better resembles a traditional light bulb. They also come in a variety of colors for a more festive look. More unique styles and colors can be ordered online or at a specialty lighting retailer.