ENERGY STAR certified products have been tested to meet stringent performance criteria established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy. The criteria ensure that all bulbs earning the ENERGY STAR label meet minimum lifetime and efficacy requirements, and are within maximum allowed product start and warm-up times. If you choose a bulb that is not ENERGY STAR qualified, you might not get the performance you are looking for.
LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, are semiconductor devices that produce visible light when an electrical current is passed through them. LED lighting differs from incandescent and compact fluorescent lighting in several ways. When designed well, LED lighting can be more efficient, durable, versatile and longer lasting. LEDs are ideal for recessed can and track lighting. They last at least 10 times longer and use up to 75 percent less energy than standard incandescent bulbs. In addition, LEDs turn on instantly (flicker-free), produce less heat and allow for precise placement of light due to their directional nature. LEDs are available in a variety of color hues or temperatures and most LED bulbs are dimmable.
Finding an ENERGY STAR certified bulb that will put out the same amount of light as your current incandescent bulb is easy. Manufacturers include product equivalency information on the packaging to help consumers choose a bulb that produces enough light. For example, if you are looking for an ENERGY STAR certified light bulb to replace your 60-watt incandescent, look for words like “Soft White 60” or “60 Watt Replacement” on the packaging.
Yes, but look for products that have the word "Dimmable" on the packaging. Almost all LEDs are dimmable. But using a regular CFL on a dimming switch or circuit will cause performance issues and shorten its rated life. Dimmable bulbs will not flicker, hum or have huge color shifts.
A lumen is a measure of light output. A watt is a measure of power consumption or how much electricity is needed to power the bulb. For example, a common 60W incandescent bulb produces about 800 lumens. When purchasing a light bulb, what you are really after is light output, which is measured in lumens. By selecting a 13-watt ENERGY STAR certified LED instead of the 60W incandescent bulb, you can still get 800 lumens, but the LED requires much less power and save on energy costs.
Because CFLs contain a small amount of mercury, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommends that you take your CFLs to a recycling location or you can take CFL bulbs to your local municipal recycling center. If there are no recycling options near you and you must put CFLs in the garbage, put the CFL in two sealed plastic bags. CFLs should not be disposed of in an incinerator.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), CFLs contain a small amount of mercury sealed within the glass tubing, so when a CFL breaks, some of the mercury can be released as vapor. The EPA has updated its recommendation on how to properly clean up a broken CFL. First, have people and pets leave the room, and open a window or door. If any central heating or air conditioning is running, shut it off. Gather materials to clean the broken bulb, like a sealable plastic bag, broom, wet paper towels, stiff cardboard and tape. Do not use a vacuum cleaner.
At PECO we work hard to continue to include new products and technologies as part of our energy efficiency programs. For lighting, we currently offer an instant discount on many eligible LED products at participating retail stores across the area. PECO instant discount stickers are displayed next to eligible lighting products so you know which products include the PECO discount.