How many Bostonians does it take to change a light bulb?

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Who knows the answer to this age old question, but we do know it only takes one changed bulb to make an impact. Lighting accounts for roughly 1/4 of all building energy consumption in the U.S. Replacing traditional light bulbs with LEDs is one of the easiest energy-saving actions you can take–and right now, there are special LED discounts for Boston residents. In recent years, LED bulbs have become even more energy efficient, longer lasting, and cheaper–all factors that mean big savings for you. Why should you replace your conventional bulbs with new LEDs? We’re shedding some light on how LEDs stack up to other popular bulbs and why you should make the switch.

The Other Bulbs

Most people are familiar with the dinosaur of light bulbs – incandescents. The incandescent bulbs used today haven’t been updated since 1947 and they are far less energy efficient, only lasting about 1,200 hours. This need for frequent replacement makes them the most expensive per kilowatt hour (kwh), so don’t be fooled by the lower upfront cost. If you still have these in your home or office, be sure to replace them with a more efficient model when they burn out.

For a while, CFLs (compact fluorescent lighting) have been a popular, energy efficient option. But they come with some challenges. They often take a few minutes to “brighten up” completely, and they contain mercury, which makes them hazardous if broken and difficult to dispose of. However, most major home improvement retailers offer free recycling collection for unbroken bulbs (click here for more information about what to do with broken or burnt out CLFs). They are much more energy efficient and last longer than incandescents, so they are a good runner up to LEDs.

The Up-and-Comer: LEDs (light-emitting diodes)

LEDs are going to make lots of people’s lives easier. These light bulbs last 50,000 hours, which is 5-times longer than CLFs and 40-50-times longer than incandescents. If you use an LED bulb for two hours per day, you won’t have to change it for 68 years! Another plus: 95% of the energy used in an LED produces light, not heat. This means that they don’t heat up your home on a hot summer day. LEDs are often the most expensive option but they last long enough that the cost per kwh is significantly lower. The need to replace them is so rare that you save in the long run.

Why not make the switch and make your life a little easier? Now’s the time, since our partners Renew Boston, Mass Save, and Eversource are offering limited time discounts to Boston residents on LED light bulbs and other energy-saving gadgets. Sign up today to receive your kit of LEDs, delivered right to your door. Offer ends May 31st, so order soon!

Check out more energy saving lighting tips.

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