Lighting accounts for about 17 per cent of your home electricity costs. You don’t have to be in the dark to save — energy efficient bulbs will save you power and money in the long run. On average, you can save more than $100 over the lifetime of just one bulb! Check out your options and start saving.
Canada's national standard on energy efficient lighting came into effect on Jan. 1, 2014. For more information on the changes, visit the Government of Canada website.
Choosing the Right Bulb
There’s an energy efficient option for all light fixtures — and you don’t have to sacrifice a clean look to make the switch. Energy efficient lighting comes in all different shapes and sizes (the bulbs don’t all have a coil design). Look for the ENERGY STAR logo. When shopping for lighting, especially specialty bulbs, ask a salesperson to help you find what you need.
LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs use 80% less power and last up to 15 times longer than incandescent bulbs, depending on the quality of the diode and the application. LED bulbs are more expensive than CFLs (Compact Fluorescent Light), but are more durable and don’t contain mercury. If you're going to be using the bulb with a dimmer you'll need to ensure you purchase a dimmable LED. You will also need to look to see if the bulb can be used in an enclosed fixture.
CFL (Compact Fluorescent Light) bulbs use up to 75% less power than incandescent light bulbs and last up to six times longer. Health Canada has done testing to address health concerns related to CFLs. Learn more about CFL safety.
Seasonal LEDs use up to 90% less power than comparable incandescent strings, last up to 10 times longer and don't generate heat. They are also more durable and shock-resistant. Using 140 SLEDs costs only pennies, whereas the same amount of 7w bulbs costs more than $20/year.
|Cost of powering your seasonal lighting strings per year|
|Regular incandescent||$2.70 (per string)|
|Mini-incandescent||$1.10 (per string)|
|SLED (seasonal LED) Regular||$0.15 (per string)|
|SLED (seasonal LED) Mini||$0.10 (per string)|
Be sure to check the package to make sure you pick the right strings — some LED strings are rated for indoor use only.
Save Even More
- Open your blinds. Sunlight is free, plus it can be brighter than light bulbs and it will also naturally warm up your home.
- Dust light bulbs and coverings. The cleaner the bulb, the more light comes through.
- Try task lighting and focus a bright light on a necessary area rather than evenly lighting the whole space. For example, use a table lamp instead of overhead lighting when reading at a desk.
- Install an automatic timer to program your lights to go on and off at specific times. Lights equipped with a photocell can also help you reduce your lighting costs; photocells automatically turn on when natural light levels are low.