The Professional Choice

A companion overview to the popular "Ask Mr. Handyman" radio program airing on Christian Talk Radio, KCRO 660AM Saturdays @ 9:30AM.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Energy Savings in the Home

Technology has made great strides in energy efficiencies that may be a great benefit for you as a home owner.  If you have not gotten on the band wagon yet, you could be throwing some hard-earned cash out the window, or at least, giving more to the utility companies than is necessary.

Here is a tid-bit of information to open your eyes to energy efficiencies and help you reduce your electric bill.

CFL Bulb
CFLs or compact fluorescent light bulbs have been around for many years now and both the price and the type of light output have greatly improved.  Many homeowners have enjoyed a decreased energy bill with a swap-out of the most used lighting in their home. 

LED bulbs
LED lighting has become an even brighter star among the available options for lighting.  The energy use for an LED bulb is very small compared to the old incandescent bulbs.  If you were to replace all of your incandescent light bulbs with LED lights you would probably save $15-$25 per month depending on use and number of lights you have. 

If you replace the 10 most used lights in the home with CFLs or LEDs in those sockets, you could save $7-$12 per month of use.  Small potatoes, I know, but over time and with a continued changing out of more of them, you could save even more down the stretch.

Most people do not find the CFL and LED lights to be enjoyable, compared to the warm glow of the old incandescent bulbs, but progress is being made to replicate them.  There are LEDs and CFLs that project a different spectrum of light, which is more appealing to our senses.

A great way to figure up the cost savings for swapping out the electron-guzzling incandescent bulbs for the sleek savers of today is to calculate the energy use for both and compare the figures.  The purchase cost of the newer models is quite a bit higher so factor that in as you swap them out.

You pay your electric bill by KWH, or kilo-watt-hours.  Basically, you are charged for every 1000 watts of energy in an hours’ use.  An example:  You leave your outside lights on all night (5 incandescent, 100 watt bulbs).  If you average 12 hours per night over the course of the month you would calculate as follows: 5X100(watts) X 12 (hours) /1000 (to figure KWH) X 30 (nights).  You would use 6KWH each night X 30 nights = 180 KWH.  Electric rates are around $.10 per KWH.  It would cost you $18.00 per month to light your yard each night with incandescent bulbs.

If you swapped those energy-guzzlers out with an equivalent LED (13 Watts compares to a 100W incandescent in light output) and apply the above calculation: 5X13X12X30/1000 you would see that it would only cost you $2.34 for the month of use.

If you don’t enjoy math, take my word for it, both CFLs and LEDs will save you quite a bit over their projected life span of use.  Call Mr Handyman @ 402.502.5212 if we can help you fix or maintain your home.