As of January, 2014, the Canadian government banned the manufacturing, importing and sale of incandescent light bulbs. The move was made in an attempt to create a more eco-friendly society, but it meant that I had to look at my lighting options and do some upgrading. Home Depot came to my rescue by offering me new lights for my house and I was excited to see if making the switch would have an impact on my house’s power bill. If there’s one thing that’s even better than making an eco-friendly change, it’s making one that saves me money too!
Our house currently had a mix of traditional incandescent light bulbs and CFL bulbs. I don’t like the high power usage of the standard incandescent, but I have to say I absolutely loathe CFL bulbs. They look ugly, they never seem to last as long as they claim, and they contain poisonous mercury. My boys have broken two or three CFL bulbs in the past and it’s always so scary trying to ensure that the bulb gets cleaned up properly.
Home Depot was ready with a solution though! The company sent me enough LED bulbs to replace every incandescent and CFL bulb in my home. These bulbs are the next generation when it comes to lighting and they have so many benefits! For one thing, the bulbs are available in a variety of styles so that exposed bulbs can be as stylish as a light fixture. Our bathroom lighting, for example, originally came with four incandescent globe lights. Over time, we replaced them with CFLs, but they completely ruined the look of the light fixture. Now, I have my beautiful globe lights back again, and the entire light fixture provides 160W of illumination and uses just 36W of electricity!
The other benefit of LED lights is their longevity. A standard LED bulb can last for up to 22 years, and the lights all have impressive warrenties. For example, if a Cree LED bulb stops working within ten years, I can return it for a full refund. And just by switching a single incandescent 60W bulb for an LED equivalent, I can save up to $139 over the lifetime of that one bulb! Most importantly for my household, LED lights don’t contain the dangerous toxic substances that CLF bulbs do, so I can feel safe about having them in a house with children.
After installing the bulbs, I learned that LEDs light up immediately and work in freezing temperatures, unlike CFLs. I was pretty worried about how I was going to replace my outdoor porch light once incandescent bulbs were banned; in a province that regularly reaches minus 50 in the winter, CFL bulbs often won’t even light at all. But the LED bulbs have shone bright in the night even in the extreme Saskatchewan cold. With all kinds of lighting options for different needs including dimmable bulbs and special shaped bulbs like the globe lights I received, LED lighting is versatile enough for any household. And best of all, the light is soft and warm just like incandescent lighting instead of having the harsh tone that CFL bulbs do.
While the LED lights have been a big hit with me so far, what I am most excited about is monitoring my electricity bills over the next few months to see how the new lighting impacts the energy cost. I’ll have an update on the results in a few months to share the differences I’ve noticed, because if there’s one thing that makes the initial expense of upgrading to LEDs more palatable, it’s seeing how much money can be saved over time!
I have to admit, I didn’t expect to be as impressed with the LED bulbs as I was. Having tried and disliked the previous eco-friendly lighting option, I didn’t want to get my hopes up too high when testing out the LED lights. But I have been blown away by how beautiful and useful these lights are for my home. The quality of the light is phenomenal and the bulbs themselves look sleek and stylish. If you currently have incandescent or CFL bulbs in your home, grab a few LED bulbs from Home Depot and give them a try to see if you prefer them. They’re a great choice for anyone looking for safe and eco-friendly lighting!