No matter how big or small your home is, lighting, when overused, can cost you quite a bit of money. With the New Year in full swing, everyone is looking for new ways to update their current style of living – a new diet, a new job… Why not a new way to save money? Here are some ways to cut back on your electricity bill this year:
1. Choose smaller wattage bulbs. Oftentimes, we choose bulbs whose power is simply too much for a room we don’t use that often. Select the wattage for each room based on its purpose and the type of environment you would like to create when the room is lit.
2. Try to refrain from fixtures with multiple fittings. While multiple lights with low wattage bulbs may seem like a good idea in theory, the more lights you have, the more energy you use – which can become costly quite quickly.
3. Consider multiple switches. During the installation of lighting in larger open rooms, multiple switches are the best choice, as these will help restrict lighting to certain areas of the room that will be in use.
4. Believe in the “saving power” of dimmers. Lights with dimmers significantly reduce the amount of electricity a light utilizes; therefore, increasing the life span of low voltage lights. While shopping for bulbs, check the package to see if they are compatible with dimmers.
5. Purchase lamps. These light fixtures enable you to have sufficient light at a much lower cost than an overhead light. They also help with creating the right ambiance and are great for moments that need focused lighting, such as sewing or reading.
6. Choose security lighting with motion detectors. Sure, it’s important to have outside lights to warn intruders away. However, lights without motion detectors that stay on all throughout the night and some of the morning can add up on your bill. Security lights with motion detectors guarantee the lights will only be used if movement is picked up by the light sensors or timers.
7. Consider going solar. If you’re looking to light your flower beds, driveway, garden, front porch or back porch steps, solar lights are the perfect option. These fixtures operate with the help of batteries that store energy from sunlight…meaning, you’ll never have to pay a bill for this type of lighting!
8. Regularly clean your lights. Just as everything else in the house can trap dust or dander, so can bulbs and fixtures. Dusty bulbs and lampshades can negatively impact your lighting, so make sure they’re a part of your cleaning routine.
9. Install natural lighting. Skylights and downlights are great for darker rooms and work rooms. If you’re building your own home or updating your current one, try to position rooms where you’ll spend the most time facing the North or Northeast so natural daylight will flow inside.
10. Don’t forget to turn off the lights. As soon as you leave the room, even if you plan on coming back at a later time, turn off the lights. This little step can help you save big long term.