Incandescent bulbs represent a mature and reliable technology that unfortunately uses up too much energy especially for residential lighting. One way to practice green living and save on monthly electricity bills is by replacing such old technology with these three modern alternatives.
Pure white halogens have less soot on the inside of their bulbs making them shine far brighter than incandescent bulbs. They’re ideal for reading because their brightness reduces eyestrain. In addition, the color of the light more accurately renders photos and other artwork. They not only use 10 to 20 percent less energy, they keep more of their original output toward the end of their lives. Their main disadvantage is that they burn hotter than incandescents, making it possible for you to burn yourself on a light fixture if you’re not careful.
Also known as CFLs, compact fluorescent lights are up to four times more efficient than incandescent. You can have the brightness of a 100-watt incandescent with a 22-watt CFL. Because they use less energy, CFLs can last up to 10 times longer. They are more expensive although the price keeps coming down as more people use them. Their lifespans are longer but can be reduced with frequent on-and-off switching. They are therefore not suitable for places where you turn lights on briefly, such as an entry way or powder room. CFLs also contain mercury, which is toxic to the environment but only if the bulb is broken or disposed of improperly.
Light-emitting diodes, or LEDs, are the newest of the three alternatives offering 50,000 or more hours of illumination, no warm-up period, and no ill effects in cold temperatures. They contain no hazardous materials, give off very little heat, and can be dimmed like incandescents. Their main disadvantage is that they are currently the most expensive option, although the longer lifespan means that they are cheaper to use overall. As they age, they may also shift color.
An advantage of these technologies is that you don’t have to leave them behind when you move. If you originally bought them, you can replace them with the original incandescent bulbs when you move. If you want to know more about green living in your apartment, or need help in finding a place to live, please contact us.