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Mister Sparky Electric Blog

Choosing Energy Saving Light Bulbs

There is much hype over the importance of using energy-saving bulbs in your home. With lighting making up 6% of your energy budget each year, it’s still an important factor in deciding which type of bulbs to use in your home.

How Much Will the Right Light Bulbs Save You?

We are used to thinking of light bulbs in terms of how many pennies it takes to run them. So the question becomes, how many pennies can we stack up to shrink our bills? If you replace five lights you use the most in your home with ENERGY STAR-rated bulbs, you can save around 7,500 pennies over a year—or $75. You can save even more if you have timers or dimmer switches connected to these lights.

The reason new lights are so much more efficient is that they are made to produce light. Incandescent bulbs waste 90% of the energy put into them in the form of heat. There are three types of bulbs for you to consider when looking for new energy-efficient products. Each type of bulb comes in a variety of colors and strengths to support any need.

  • Halogen Incandescents are lights that work like old incandescent light bulbs do, but have a gas-filled capsule to make them more efficient. They meet all the minimums but aren’t the most efficient.


  • Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) are wound up versions of the long fluorescent bulbs you see in office buildings and garages. They use one-third of the energy of halogen bulbs and pay for themselves in nine months. One problem is that each bulb contains a small amount of mercury. For that reason, CFLs to be carefully recycled at the end of their life span.


  • Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) are semiconductors that convert electricity into light. They are solid-state bulbs with no moving parts, more efficient, and more versatile than the other two types. Their current problem is price, with LEDs being more expensive. However, they only use 20%-25% of the energy of incandescent bulbs and last around 15-25 times as long so they pay for themselves in the long run.


Switching out just a few lights in your house can make meaningful advances towards shrinking your energy bill. You can also switch to energy-efficient bulbs now in the most important lights, and keep the old bulbs to replace the ones you infrequently use. Taking the long term approach to your lighting costs will save you big.


Contact Mister Sparky to learn more about switching your home to energy-saving light bulbs.

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