Energy saving light bulbs offer efficient alternatives to traditional light bulbs. By replacing conventional bulbs with any of these three energy-saving options, buyers reduce the total energy consumption of a residence or building while having the same amount of light at their disposal.
Compact Fluorescent Lamps
Also called compact fluorescent lights, compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) are designed to replace incandescent light bulbs. Most types use the same fixtures as the older bulbs and come in similar sizes. Compared to an incandescent bulb offering the same amount of visible light, a CFL model uses only one-fifth to one-third of the electricity and can last from eight to 15 times longer or 6,000 to 15,000 hours of use. A CFL uses a curved or folded tube and a compact electronic ballast at the base. The tube comes in a number of shapes. One of the most popular, spiral bulbs feature helical turns. A-shaped ones look like traditional incandescent models. Other shapes include older "tubed" types, candle-shaped varieties, and reflectors. Moreover, CFLs are available in different colour temperatures. Soft white bulbs, or warm bulbs, replicate the yellowish glow of older lamps. White varieties offer cooler light. All high-quality CFLs have a colour rendering index (CRI) of 80 or better. Several, but not all, CFL models work with dimmer switches.
LED lamps are light bulbs featuring an assembly of LEDs. They resemble conventional lamps in shape and come with connections for most existing fixtures. However, they often feature heat sinks and cooling fins. These lights are highly energy-efficient and offer several advantages over CFL lamps. For example, LED bulbs come to full brightness immediately, and their service life is significantly longer at 15,000 to 50,000 hours, depending on quality. They use 75 to 80 per cent less energy than incandescent options. However, they cost more than CFL lamps. LED lamps offer directional light, an advantage for recessed lighting, but a disadvantage in other applications. Newer models use diffuser lenses and reflectors to create dispersed light similar to conventional light bulbs. Like CFLs, LED lamps come in different colour temperatures. Besides bulbs, buyers can also find LED tube lights that fit fluorescent tube light fixtures.
Halogen bulbs are similar to incandescent bulbs. They have a sealed capsule that holds halogen gas around a filament. This arrangement allows them to use 25 per cent less energy than conventional incandescent bulbs. These energy saving bulbs also last three times longer. Moreover, halogen lamps work well with dimmers and feature the same soft yellow light of traditional bulbs.