Increasing your lighting efficiency is one of the fastest ways to decrease your energy bills. If you replace 25% of your lights in high-use areas with fluorescents, you can save about 50% of your lighting energy bill.
TIPS (from DOE's Energy Saver guide)
- Turn off the lights in any room you're not using, or consider installing timers, photo cells, or occupancy sensors to reduce the amount of time your lights are on.
- Use task lighting; instead of brightly lighting an entire room, focus the light where you need it. For example, use fluorescent under-cabinet lighting for kitchen sinks and countertops under cabinets.
- Consider three-way lamps; they make it easier to keep lighting levels low when brighter light is not necessary.
- Use 4-foot fluorescent fixtures with reflective backing and electronic ballasts for your workroom, garage, and laundry areas.
- Use Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) in all the portable table and floor lamps in your home. Consider carefully the size and fit of these systems when you select them. Some home fixtures may not accommodate some of the larger CFLs.
- For spot lighting, consider CFLs with reflectors. The lamps range in wattage from 13-watt to 32-watt and provide a very directed light using a reflector and lens system.
- Take advantage of daylight by using light-colored, loose-weaving curtains on your windows to allow daylight to penetrate the room while preserving privacy. Also, decorate with lighter colors that reflect daylight.
- If you have torchiere fixtures with halogen lamps, consider replacing them with compact fluorescent torchieres. Compact fluorescent torchieres use 60% to 80% less energy and can produce more light (lumens) than the halogen torchieres.