Jul 14, 2011

Energy saving ideas for lighting.

With energy costs and concerns ever-increasing, and our global awareness of sustainability and eco-friendly design how can you be cost conscious and still have great design?   
An energy-saving lighting design for an historic home.

Some incandescent and CFL bulb

The simplest way to make immediate changes is to purchase compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) that can be screwed into existing light fixtures.   CFL's come a variety of styles from chandelier shaped bulbs with small bases, to regular "A" base incandescent bulbs (IB), to the reflector shapes found in recessed fixtures.   As far as cost, they are no longer many times more expensive than IB's.  Combine that with the fact that they last up to 10 times longer, and you are saving time as well as money. You can keep your existing  fixtures and light your rooms in style for less. NOTES:  A 13 watt CFL - using 104 kilowatts - is the equivalent to a 60 Watt IB - using 480 kilowatts. Home Depot does recycle CFL's in their stores.

Another easy way to save money, add ambiance, and a great look on your walls is to use sleek dimmers instead of existing switches. Made by www.lutron.com, they are sold at most hardware and big box stores. You can also install their occupancy and vacancy sensors and see the benefits in energy use and functional use immediately. They can be retrofitted in the space occupied by regular switches or installed without wires at all.  Check out their room, lamp and whole home lighting systems for long-term design planning, energy efficiency and cost savings.

When remodeling, building or doing a major upgrade - particularly where local codes require energy savings - you can install CFL recessed fixtures that meet code in kitchen and bath design. Many well-known lighting manufacturers offer hanging and wall mounted fixtures in either fluorescent or incandescent bulbs so you can select either style.  Long -term, light emitting diodes (LED) are more energy saving, longer lasting, and are available in many styles including recessed or can fixtures, under cabinet task fixtures, and puck style lights. 

ADA compliant lighting is both gorgeous and energy-saving.

When in doubt, contact a lighting design professional. We want you to have the right light for your rooms and tasks while saving energy!