Upgrading to LED is a bright move

As you may be aware, if you’ve been following my blog www.queenofeasygreen.co.uk, I am currently in the process of renovating and extending my own home with my main aim of making it as eco-friendly and energy efficient as possible.

As part of our work, we have installed energy efficient measures including eco-friendly loft, wall and floor insulation, energy-efficient (Low-E) double-glazing, as well as radiator reflectors to keep our home warm and cosy whilst reducing our energy bills. But, as you will know, it’s not just heating our homes that racks up the energy usage, many household appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers, tumble dryers and ovens are also responsible for making our electricity meters spin around at a rate of knots. But did you realize there might be another energy-guzzling culprit in your home that you may be overlooking?

Lighting!

Yes, with our relatively recent love affair with halogen spotlights, which illuminate our homes as bright as high street showrooms, halogen lights are one of the heavier users of electricity in our homes.

The reason being is because rather than lighting each room with a single bulb, homeowners with halogen spotlights can sometimes have up to ten or more bulbs in each room. So, for example, if you have 20 x 50w halogon bulbs in your home, one hour of use (1000w) would cost you 10p an hour. That may not sound a lot, but times that figure that by 6 hours a night and then 7 days at week, it soon adds up to over £200 a year and that’s just for your lighting!

So how can you still enjoy the crisp brightness of halogen lights whilst reducing your energy consumption? The simple answer, switch to LED – this is what I have done.

SimplyLED kindly sent me some of their GU10 LED NxtGen Series II Dimmable lights to review and I can honestly say I am very impressed.

In the past, the light from LED’s was considered to be a little weak and ‘cold’ in colour, but this is not the case now. With improvements in light output and colour, many LED’s, SimplyLED’s bulbs included, are now comparable to halogens in colour temperature and brightness. Plus, with SimplyLED, you also have a choice of either ‘Cool White’ or ‘Warm White’, as I was fitting the lights in my bedroom I chose the latter which illuminate our room with a bright, yet cosy glow.

A word of advice, however if you choose dimmable LED’s you will need to fit a compatible dimmer switch to ensure they work smoothly, with no flickering. This is a universal issue with dimmable LED’s, not just SimplyLED’s bulbs, and there are several dimmer switches available on the market which are suitable.

Finally price, without a doubt replacing all of your halogen lights with LED bulbs in one go means a high up-front cost, GU10 bulbs start at £11.99 each. However, when you consider that LED’s use up to 90% less energy than ordinary incandescent bulbs AND that they last up to 15 times longer than LED bulbs (LED bulbs last up to 30,000 hours whereas the average halogen bulbs lasts 2,000 hours) the energy consumed through usage and the minimal replacement costs mean your will see a return on your investment within the first couple of years. Plus, you will go on making further financial savings for many more years to come.

Also, unlike CFL bulbs, LEDs do not contain any hazardous materials such as mercury, and so are less harmful to the environment when they’re disposed of.

So, if you want to make a significant saving on your energy bills, but do not want to compromise on the quality of light in your home, I’d heartily recommend that you consider switching from halogen to LED. Saving energy has never been so simple, or should that be so SimplyLED?

Ready to make the change to LED?  SimplyLED are offering an exclusive discount to Queen of Easy Green readers!  Just use the code “QOEG10” at checkout to receive 10% off your order.  

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