LED Lighting And Savings Explained


What is LED?

LED stands for Light Emitting Diode, and what you need to know is it uses way less energy than conventional incandescent bulbs and lasts many times longer. In the quest to move towards energy independence and sustainability while having a low carbon footprint, switching out your lights to LED bulbs is by far the easiest thing you can do. In fact , if you do not really understand the benefits, once you do the math you’ll be surprised exactly just how significant a difference we’re talking about.

If you’ve looked into LED lights in the past and thought that they were either too expensive or you didn’t care for the kind of light they put out, it’s time to look again. As with all new technologies, they advance quickly and what was cutting edge four years ago is completely obsolete today in many cases. Lights are measured in the watts they require to operate, the lumens per watt (Lumens are brightness) and the Kelvins or color. LED lights now have many options, for example for standard 60,75 or 100 watt incandescent bulb replacements, LED lights can have Lumens of 600,660,800,1000,1100 and Kelvins from 2700k,3000k,4000k and 6000k. They come in 6,8 or 10 watt. If you think that sounds like 90% less power for the same job you’re right.

All types of bulbs too. Regular lamp bulbs, flood lights for your carport, deck or pool, fluorescent tubes, candelabra for the dining room, vanity bulbs in the bathroom etc. http://energy.gov/energysaver/led-lighting

The savings math

Ok get to the point. This is how you calculate the savings per bulb of your lights. Take any bulb. Say a 60 watt incandescent bulb that you have on for 5 hrs per day 20 days per month. Sounds like nothing. Our power companies bill us in kilowatt hours or Kw/h and to get the number from your light consumption it works out like this. 60 watts times 5 (hrs per day) equals 300. Times 20 days per month equals 6000. Divide by 1000 then times your hydro charge per kw/h, around here it’s 10 cents. 60X5X20/1000X0.1= 60 cents. So that bulb costs you 60 cents times 12 months $7.20 per year in hydro.

Sounds like nothing maybe to you. Well how many of us have one bulb in our whole place and only use 5hrs per day? I have over 22 bulbs in my place. Have you ever counted yours up? Try it. Do the math. Lets say you run a small business and have a little office somewhere. That office could have 100 bulbs in it easily that are all on for an average 10 hrs per day. 60X100X10X20/1000X0.1= $120 per month or $1440 per year. If you were to replace all of those bulbs with LED 6 Watt bulbs that were just regular grade you’d spend about $6 per bulb, so $600 in bulbs and your monthly bill would go from $120 to $12 or $144 per year. So you’d save $1296 per year in hydro. Also the average lifespan of an LED bulb is 20,000 hrs (some 10,000 some 50,000) whereas the average life of an incandescent is 1,000-2,000 hrs. So you could have a bulb that gives you 10-20 times longer life that saves you 90% on your power. On top of which the lights could last several decades before needing to be replaced.

Liquid cooled LED
Liquid cooled LED

When I decided to start making the switch I thought to myself if I’m going to do this I want to explore what the best options available are that I genuinely found interesting. I went for the liquid cooled silicone LED which are awesome. They cost about $15 each and I’m not made of money so I went with 8 to start out with. Each of these bulbs is good for 50,000hrs and are not only cool to the touch but you can literally bounce them off the pavement and they won’t break. In my first month I saved about $12 on my hydro. So in the first year they will pay for themselves. There’s also a company promoting them because of their environmental benefits and I liked the ad for it.

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Born in Vancouver, B.C. , Canada. Father, musician and philosopher, lover of people, culture, eco-tech, hockey and craft beer. Thinking of solutions to global issues since 1994 when I was awakened due to the Rwandan genocide and the lack of action by the G7 nations. Adopted the Buckminster Fuller philosophy that in order to solve a problem you create solutions that make them obsolete.