Incandescent light bulbs have been a staple in our lives since Thomas Edison famously popularized them in the late 1880s. Today, with many homes focusing on being more earth friendly, the bright incandescent light bulbs will have to go. Unfortunately many alternative lighting sources have received some bad press – stopping many from making some smart changes. Do non-incandescents really emit a lower quality light? While that may have been the case, recent advances in lighting technology have made alternative sources a great replacement to the common incandescent light bulb, which uses a shockingly high amount of electricity.
Out with the Incandescents!
How do high efficiency bulbs compare with your old incandescents? New models, such as LED bulbs or compact fluorescents (CFLs) use up to 80% less electricity than typical incandescent lights. One must be prepared for a little sticker shock as these bulbs are priced slightly higher than what they may be accustomed to. Fear not, however as a high efficiency bulb can save you more than $50 over its lifetime off of your electric bill – more than offsetting the higher initial cost of buying environmentally friendly lighting.
CFL or LED?
Many compact fluorescents have a bad reputation, being associated with the annoying flicker of factories or warehouses. However, CFLs offer a very similar light to a traditional incandescent and even screw into the same light sockets. Although CFLs are often a more energy efficient solution than incandescents, LED bulbs (or light emitting diodes) use a completely different technology and will last longer (up to ten times longer!) than anything else currently on the market. Ever wondered why LED televisions cost more than most other models? This bulb technology is the reason why.
Try replacing your old light bulbs with LED candle bulbs in your home and enjoy the money saving benefits over their incredibly long lifespan. The technology used to produce LED bulbs has become much more efficient over the past few years, which continues to lower costs for the consumer and will eventually make LEDs the standard in most homes. Aside from their longevity, other benefits of LEDs include not using any mercury in their production and burning at a much cooler temperature. Ever touched a light bulb and burned your hand? That will never happen with an LED. Since LED bulbs can come in varying types – all the way from dimmable to candelabra – with unique levels of brightness, consumers should be ready to look at the lumen level on packages to help them select bulbs with the proper brightness levels.
While both CFLs and LEDs are going to be much better options than incandescents or traditional fluorescents, most of the research points to light emitting diodes as the overall winner. If the entire country throws out old, non-efficient lights for CFLs or LEDs the amount of energy saved would be astronomical. Some argue that close to 100 full power plants could shut down in the United States alone. The argument that LEDs don’t offer the warm feeling of traditional bulbs is being thrown out as we speak. A major museum in Amsterdam has even recently switched to LEDs to shed light on their displays. Aside from the quality of the light, the LED bulbs put the precious paintings at less risk since they emit close to no heat or UV radiation.
If you want to green up your home, protect the environment and save a little bit of cash – switch out your old light bulbs for LEDs and enjoy years of quality light that they will provide.