SMECO newsletter

volume 65 - issue 4 - april 2015

Little changes can make a big difference

Since Thomas Edison patented the incandescent bulb in 1879, technology to light our homes has been changing and evolving to increase the longevity of the bulb and decrease the amount of electricity it uses. Making small changes to the lighting use in your home can save energy and save money.

• Replace all incandescent light bulbs with either ENERGY STAR® compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) or light-emitting diode (LED) lights. Though the up-front costs are higher, they will save you money over their lifespan.

• Start replacing bulbs that burn out, any light routinely left on, or lights used the most. SMECO offers rebates on ENERGY STAR CFLs and LED lights at participating stores to help you make the switch. You can get up to $2.25 in instant discounts for CFLs and up to $8 for LEDs. The savings are included in your purchase price at the register.

• Use timers on lights when you're on vacation.

• Purchase the right light for your needs. If you do not like the delay in turning on a CFL, look for "instant-on" lights. Check labels to ensure you are getting the right light for your needs. CFLs and LEDs have advanced and come in many styles, including soft white or bright white. If you feel a 60-watt equivalent light is not bright enough, go with the 75-watt equivalent or even the 100. They will still use less wattage than the incandescent 60-watt bulb.

• Keep your receipt and proof of purchase. Many manufacturers guarantee the lifespan on their CFL and LED lights. If the light burns out before it is supposed to, see if they will replace it.

• If you have an incandescent or LED, turning it off will save you energy. CFLs are a bit different. If you turn them on and off frequently, they will not last as long. If you leave the room for more than 15 minutes, turn them off, otherwise you can leave them on.

Upgrade to energy-efficient ENERGY STAR CFLs or LEDs in your lighting and save. Click here to find a participating vendor.