We at Burley Electrical Services would like to offer some suggestions for your day to day lighting, and some holiday stuff too. Ah, the humble light bulb, given rare thought or consideration, until it fails. Electrical lighting is essential to both commercial enterprise and the home. In the home, air conditioning, water heating and clothes and dish drying use the majority of the electrical power consumed daily in the all electric household. But lighting is with us from sunset to sunrise. We need lighting to aid us in our daily routine. Reading, preparing meals, and recreational activities need lighting for safety and enjoyment. Computers and electronic devices generally require a lighted environment.
Environmentally Friendly & Sustainable Lighting
Speaking of the environment we want our lighting to be green. Light is a balancing act that requires compromise between cost, power consumption and environmental impact during manufacture and subsequent disposal. With the demise of Edison’s incandescent light bulb, we have two choices generally available to the home owner. First are those spiral twisty lights known as CFLs (Compact Fluorescent Lights) and second the new darling on the block, LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes).
CFL Light Bulb Facts
For comparison we are going to consider the light output from a typical old fashioned 60 watt incandescent light bulb. This bulb is ubiquitous through our household and probably provides the majority of light in our homes.
A 60w equivalent CFL consumes only about 14 watts, a quarter of its incandescent cousin. They last longer than the old bulb, up to about 8,000 hours as opposed to the 1,000 or so hours for incandescent lighting. They run less than $2.00 each and the daylight balanced bulb produces a clear white light. Another consideration is heat. Fluorescent bulbs get hot, not as hot as an incandescent light, but hot to the touch. In warm climates this may work against your air conditioning, a major power hog. The quandary with CFL’s is that they contain a very small amount of mercury, introducing mercury into the landfills and possibly compromising water supplies.
LED Light Output
What about LEDs? A 60w equivalent (about 800 lumens) will set you back at about $4.00 each. But they have no mercury and can last in the order of 25,000 hours (about 20+ years under normal usage). Power consumption is a mere 9 watt, less than a tenth of the power gobbled up by the old 60w incandescent bulb. In consideration of the lower power consumption and long life LEDs tally up on the plus side. Long term LEDs are cheaper and shouldn’t affect the environment to the degree that CFLs can, offsetting their initial cost. Additionally you have noticed the holiday lighting is moving to LEDs, again they offer lower power consumption and run cooler, significantly reducing a fire hazard. Certainly beats the candle used on trees originally. Another consideration for LEDs is size and shape. The current LEDs mimic the older bulbs in shape and size. Some CFLs will not fit some lamps designed around the traditional bulb shape. Some older shades attach directly to the bulb, and will not function with CFLs.
Lighting Consultations, Fixture Installations & More in Pompano Beach, Plantation, Deerfield Beach, Boca Raton, Davie, Lighthouse Point, Parkland, Fort Lauderdale & South Florida
In our daily lives we must ponder the pros and cons of our lighting needs. Up front cost, versus long term savings, environmentally friendly versus cost, though most of us recognize the need to be “green” when possible. Personally all things considered I lean towards LEDs; they’ve dropped in cost and are currently more competitive with CFLs. When considering your lighting, particularly during the holiday season consult with a professional electrician. Contact our friendly staff at Burley Electrical Services we would be glad to assist you in your lighting decisions.