Energy-Saving Lighting Ideas

The word has been out for some time now: Conventional incandescent light bulbs are not energy-efficient; they are being pushed out of the lighting spotlight as fluorescent bulbs and LED bulbs become more popular. The light-production process of conventional incandescent bulbs generates a lot of heat (the filament must be warmed), which is a waste of energy since a huge portion of the available electricity isn’t going toward producing visible light. Besides using more energy-efficient bulbs, there are other steps you can take to make the lighting in your home more energy-efficient, while at the same time help your money stay in your wallet!

Add Skylights or Tall Windows
Adding skylights or tall windows is a fabulous way to increase natural daylight in your home. It saves you energy and money by decreasing the need to use electricity for lighting. Tubular skylights are a skylight option that provide a more cost-effective way to naturally light your home. Tubular skylights are, in simple terms, mini-skylights (about the size of a recessed lighting fixture) that daylight can shine through, almost replacing the need for light bulb use during the day. Be sure to hire a reputable and professional contractor to install your skylight. An improperly installed skylight can cause you to lose more energy as air-conditioned air seeps out.

Move Your Workspace or Reading Space Closer to a Window
Consider rearranging your furniture or adjusting your blinds and shades to make the most use out of the daylight. Moving a couch closer to a window could help you reduce the need for a reading lamp during the day. Give some thought to moving your furniture around to see if you will benefit from the natural daylight. You can always move the furniture back if you don’t see any improvement.

Paint Your Rooms in a Lighter Color
If you have a library or study in your home, consider painting it in a lighter color so that the daylight reflects off of it better than it would in a dark-painted room. This is especially important to keep in mind when painting a ceiling, which will reflect the most light. The closer it is to pure white, the better it will reflect. If you need a good painter to help you select the best reflective paints, visit Painting Networx, where you can find the most professional, reliable painting contractors and even get a free quote on your painting job.

Use Task Lighting
Task lighting is a great way to save energy. Many task lighting lamps and under-the-counter lighting fixtures use LED bulbs (a light-emitting-diode) which will further your energy and money savings. LEDs produce more light per watt than incandescent bulbs, so they are great for minor lighting needs (you may have seen these tiny bulbs used in a pen light or other small electronic device). There is a lot of new research being conducted with LED bulbs. They will play a large role in the future of how we light our homes. In the meantime, they are great for task lighting.

Consider a Renewable Energy Source
Renewable energy sources provide a great way to save energy. It takes a commitment and an initial investment to set up a renewable energy source in your home. One way to do this is to install a home-scale wind turbine or solar panels to produce electricity for your home. Learn some DIY Solar Lighting Tips. A quick and simple way to start benefiting from solar lighting is to install outdoor solar-powered security lights or even solar-powered garden lights. An additional option is LED outdoor lighting fixtures.

Use Dimmers
The energy savings results from installing dimmers on your lights is simple. Dimmers give you the ability to control the strength of a light bulb. Why keep your lights on so bright if you’re watching a movie, for instance? When a bulb burns more dimly, it uses less electricity. There are many dimmers on the market, and some come with combination timers. Once you find and purchase a dimmer, the next step is to find a reliable electrician to install it for you.

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