This is a guest post by Lilly Sheperd, a freelance writer who shares her thoughts on various blogs.
There are a number of solid arguments for switching bulbs in your home. You’ve probably heard them all before, and maybe you’ve dismissed them. But the fluorescent bulbs that you may be thinking of are not the only way to keep costs low and save energy. LEDs are becoming increasingly popular on the marketplace, and are in the midst of a dramatic increase in functionality and affordability. They may be the bulb of a very bright future.
Disadvantages of CFL
Compact Fluorescent Light (CFL) bulbs are great in a number of ways. They are an energy-efficient alternative to incandescent bulbs, saving both you and the planet the heavy costs of excessive consumption. They are also pretty cheap and widely distributed. But as we will see, they are not preferable to an LED.
There are a few obvious problems with a fluorescent bulb—the biggest of which you can often see simply by flicking the “ON” switch at home. They often cast a different sort of light, probably much unlike the one you are used to with your classic incandescent. This probably isn’t due to the essential power of the bulb, since fluorescent bulbs are supposed to be equal in power to incandescent ones. But their power can fade more easily, due to temperature changes and general usage. Flicking on and off your fluorescent bulb too many times can cause its effectiveness to deteriorate, as can putting it in low-temperature environments for a sustained period of time.
In addition, owning a fluorescent bulb can be slightly disconcerting because of the mercury contained within it. Breakage or mishandling of the bulb could result in exposure to this mercury which, although it probably wouldn’t do any severe damage, may nonetheless be bad for your health.
The LED Revolution
Everyone knows energy costs are high and getting higher, a trend which can have an increasingly debilitating effect on your bank account. So your two options for thwarting this money-draining bug in your home’s economic ecosystem are CFL and LED bulbs. While CFLs have been around for a long time, LED bulbs are just starting to flourish on the market. They’re more expensive—for now—but the cost pays off big time in the long run.
Consider that an LED bulb will last ten times longer than an average fluorescent. This not only saves you money in long run, but it saves you from the hassle of having to constantly replace your bulb.
LEDs are more energy efficient than both alternatives. Their 2-7 watt usage of electricity is 1/3 and 1/30 the amount consumed by fluorescent and incandescent bulbs, respectively.
Less heat is generated by an LED than by both CFLs and incandescent bulbs. 80% of the energy used by an LED light is generated into electricity—giving it a remarkable efficiency rate that is three times that of a fluorescent bulb.
Regardless of your reasoning, it’s undeniable that energy efficiency is the way to go. And the LED technology is only improving, while companies like i-lite are leading the way in keeping costs down. Looking forward, the switch to LED bulbs seems imminent and will help both the planet and your purse.