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Make the Switch to LEDs

LEDs have improved over the last several years

LED (Light Emitting Diode) lights use only a quarter of the energy and last up to 25 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs, wasting very little energy in heat. This means that your air conditioning does not have to work harder to cool your house in the summer. LEDs are also more efficient than Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs), safer and last four times longer. In the last couple of years, exciting improvements have been made in LEDs that make then even more appealing to customers. LED lighting is not a new technology, but with declining costs and improved performance, LEDs are projected to achieve a market share of 84% by 2030.

LED lights now come in a range of color options and brightness levels. To find the right LED bulb for you, check lumen and Kelvin information on the package. The lumens tell you how bright the light will be.  A traditional incandescent 60W bulb puts out 800 lumens. This is the same brightness as a 12W LED bulb. A traditional 100W bulb puts out 1,600 lumens, which can be matched by a 25W LED bulb.  The color temperature, measured in Kelvin (K), is indicative of the coolness or warmness of the light. For example, a 2700-3000K bulb would produce a “warm” or “soft white” light for your bedroom or living room, whereas a 4000K bulb would offer a “cool white” light for your kitchen. Check this Sunland Lighting link to find the right bulb for your home.  

Some LED lights are now able to switch between different color temperatures with the flick of a switch or dim without installation of a dimmer switch. There are “smart” lights which can connect to your wi-fi allowing you to control from a phone app, allowing remote on/off/dimming control, or scheduling and color changing. Some lights are also compatible with smart-home systems such as Amazon Alexa so they can be voice activated.

The City of Thousand Oaks recently participated in Southern California Edison’s Direct Install program to save energy by converting more than 2000 fluorescent lights to LEDs in four City facilities. The City has also switched all City-owned streetlights (about 5% of the total streetlights) and traffic lights over to LED.

light bulb graph

Maybe it’s time for you to make the switch?

With the holidays close, take the next step by switching your decorative lights to LED. They are not only more cost effective, but also do not get hot like incandescent which greatly reduces the fire hazard. LEDs are much more environmentally friendly and do not contain toxic mercury like CFLs so they can be disposed of safely in the trash. Make an appointment at the City’s household hazardous waste facility to dispose of CFLs. The vapors are hazardous so be careful when transporting and follow the guidance from Earth911 at this link if they are accidentally broken.  

To learn more about energy efficiency, visit the City's Energy page at this link.

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