I’m going to spare you and not go through an in depth installation on how to screw in a light bulb. However, I am going to talk about how simply installing CFLs dropped my electricity useage by 40% in one month despite it being fall and the days growing shorter and the heat being turned on for the first time this fall.
In September we used 428 kWh of electricity in 21 days. For comparison’s sake I’m going to extrapolate that number up to 591 kWh for 29 days so it is the same as the next bill. This is how we moved into the house. There were CFLs in some areas, and many areas with normal incandescent light bulbs.
Around the beginning of the next month I went through the house and replaced probably 90% of the bulbs with CFLs. That bill came not too long ago. This bill was for the past 29 days. It showed a very nicely improved upon 355 kWh. Yep, that is a 40% reduction in electricity useage!
Now, there are actually several important things to keep in mind here. First off, we use normal conservation tactics like keeping lights off in rooms we weren’t in and that sort of thing. Our water heater is natural gas, so hot water isn’t figured into this. The days are getting shorter and lights need to be on longer than last month. We didn’t have the heat on in the first month’s bill, but did on the second month’s bill. This includes one room with electric in floor heat and gas forced air although it wasn’t on much.
Now, whats the damage to the pocketbook for doing an 90% bulb replacement? Well, it honestly wasn’t too bad at all. I paid right around $100 to do most of the house. I was able to find a four pack of 15W bulbs (60W equivalent) for $4 and grabbed a few packs. The ones that hurt were the dimmable bulbs and the few special bulbs. The dimmable bulbs came in packs of four as well, but they cost $15 per pack, and I needed four packs. The other ones that add up fast were special bulbs like ones with candelabra bases and ones with a plastic bulb shell for a lamp shade to clamp onto. But, if we look at the pay back time, we are still looking at just a few months. These bulbs are saving me almost 240 kWh per month!
- Assorted CFL light bulbs – $100
Energy Savings: ~240 kWh
Payback: 3.5 months (at $.12 per kWh)
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