Which Lighting Options Are Most Efficient?

Energy Concepts Alternative Energy sources

While solar will improve the efficiency and sustainability of all your electricity use, there is still much you can do to improve efficiency throughout your home. One of the easiest ways is with lighting. Lighting uses about 6% of all your energy expenditure every month. This may seem like a relatively small amount, but it adds up over time. Additionally, the potential for efficiency improvements is immense.

What Are My Options?

For years, the only real option for electric lighting were the halogen incandescent bulbs that Edison invented. These improved over the decades in durability and efficiency, but over time inventors learned that the technology simply wasn’t the best way to provide artificial lighting.Enter LEDs and CFLs. These two types of light bulbs are the industry standard these days, despite many still clinging to outdated incandescents.


Let’s start with CFLs. This stands for Compact Fluorescent Lamps. You’ve probably seen lighting made from long tubes in office buildings or schools. This is essentially the same thing curled up into a bulb shape. They cost more than incandescent bulbs, but are so much more efficient that they pay for themselves in about 9 months. They can provide warm light with new technological developments so you don’t have to resign yourself to bright white light if you don’t like that.


LEDs are extremely efficient using only about a fifth of the energy of an incandescent while lasting 20 times longer! They are also the most expensive, but will pay for themselves in only a few months. Because LED don’t generate much heat, they are even more efficient than CFLs. Additionally, CFLs have mercury in them, while LEDs are free of toxins.

Switching your bulbs is a great way to improve your energy efficiency. It’s a relatively small investment for years of benefits.

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