Which Energy Efficient Lighting Will Save On My Electricity Costs?10-07-2015
With interior lighting equating to around 60% of businesses’ energy bills, and £1 out of every £3 spent on it being wasted, it’s no wonder than many companies are looking at ways to decrease their electricity expenditure.
The most common way of saving electricity lighting costs it to switch to energy efficient bulbs. These bulbs are available in a range of styles, shapes and sizes. These is no need to change your existing fittings as energy efficient bulbs are available as bayonet and screw cap and many allow dimming, so no need to change your light switch either!
Production of traditional incandescent bulbs (that were used for many years in homes and businesses) has ceased under new energy laws. This was due to their low energy efficiency as these bulbs waste 90% of their energy as heat. There are fortunately 3 replacements that businesses can choose from; halogens, CFLs and LEDs.
Halogen bulbs are one of the most commonly used energy saving bulbs and are inexpensive to purchase. They work by the bulb having a capsule of gas surrounding a filament to increase bulb efficiency. It is the least energy efficient of the bulb options, but still far more efficient than the traditional incandescent bulbs.
– Uses around 60% of the energy of traditional bulbs
– Lasts 2-5 times longer than traditional bulbs.
CFLs (Compact Flourescents)
CFL bulbs use gas inside a glass tube which is charged with electricity until it glows and gives off light. They are a more expensive option than halogen bulbs, but typically pay for themselves in less than nine months, so savings are seen quickly.
– Uses around 25% of the energy of traditional bulbs
– Last 10 times longer than traditional bulbs
LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes)
LED lights use semiconductors that convert electricity into light. Once they were mainly used for car indicators and traffic lights, but are now becoming a rapidly developing technology and one of the most energy efficient light sources. LEDs are the most expensive option to purchase at this stage, but the price is expected to drop as more products and manufacturers enter the market. However, LEDs last a very long time and have an extremely low energy use, meaning that they pay for themselves several times before having to be replaced.
– Uses around 20% of the energy of traditional bulbs
– Lasts 25 times longer than traditional bulbs
While changing to more energy efficient bulbs is the most effective option for decreasing your energy bill, there are other effective ways to help. Installing motion or occupancy sensors are a great way to save on energy costs as they automatically dim or switch off the lighting when there is no motion sensed over a set time period. This can reduce energy bills for lighting by up to 30% overall. Timers can also be purchased to turn lights on and off at scheduled times. Another option, less widely used, are daylight sensors. These adjust the light intensity coming from the bulbs according to how much natural light is making its way into the room. This can help to reduce costs by up to 40%.
Having a regular maintenance schedule can also help to save on energy costs in the long-term. Ensuring that windows and skylights are regularly cleaned can help to reduce the need for artificial light, and keeps your office looking clean! An increase in natural light can lead to lights being switched off for around a third of the day, and natural light has been linked to increased work productivity and happiness.
Task lighting such as desk lamps and under-cabinet lighting can illuminate a workspace and use less energy by localising the location of the lighting and reducing the need for overhead, full-room lighting.
By using a combination of the above methods, a business can save a substantial amount a year on lighting electricity costs, and with very little cost to do so.