Shining a Light on the Benefits of LED Lighting. Here’s Why LED Is Better for You and the Environment

Posted by Birddog Lighting on Mar 18th 2019

Shining a Light on the Benefits of LED Lighting. Here’s Why LED Is Better for You and the Environment

If we were to count all the light bulbs in American households, we’d come up with a 5.74 billion estimate.

That’s right! After all, an average U.S. home uses about 45 light bulbs. Multiply that with the country’s 127.59 million households (2018), and you get 5.74 billion.

Granted, only about six percent of residential electricity use in 2018 went towards lighting. But that six percent translates to 91 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity! This means that residential consumers paid more than $11.74 million in 2018 for lighting alone.

This has led to more consumers exploring the benefits of LED lighting. Manufacturers tout it as the most energy-efficient lighting technology, promising lower electricity bills.

So… How true is this? What other benefits can you expect when you switch to LED?

Keep reading as this post will address all these questions and more!

LED Technology 101

LED (Light Emitting Diode) is a semiconductor device that turns electricity into light. Each LED diode is about as big as a fleck of pepper. Despite their tiny size, they’re brighter than other lighting devices.

One of the differences between LED and incandescent bulbs (also CFLs) is the way they produce light. In LEDs, electrical current passes through the semiconductor device. As the current flows, the electrons it contains release both heat and light rays.

Now that you know more about how LEDs work, let’s look at some of their top benefits.

1. Less Heat, More Light

Speaking of heat, did you know that incandescent light gives off 90 percent of the energy they use in the form of heat? CFLs also release a lot of energy — up to 80 percent — as heat.

In short, incandescent lights and CFLs burn a lot of energy that doesn’t even go to lighting up the bulbs. That consumed electricity only makes your home warmer, not brighter. LEDs, on the other hand, emit very little heat and plenty of bright, focused light.

2. Less Energy for Much Brighter Lights

The energy consumed by LEDs goes straight to lighting, so they only draw enough power they need. That’s why LED lights consume less energy than traditional fluorescent lights. But even with minimal power requirements, they still produce brighter light.

LED lighting uses about 40 percent less energy than fluorescent lights and 80 percent less power than incandescent solutions. But even if LEDs consume less energy, they still produce the same, even higher amount of light.

3. Lower Energy Requirements, Lower Electricity Bills

In the U.S., each household has an average monthly energy consumption of 897 kWh. Now, multiply that by 12.95 Cents per kWh, the average electricity price in the country in November 2018.

That puts the average monthly home electricity bill at $116.16. Since six percent of that goes towards lighting, you’re paying around $7 for lighting alone. $84 a year is a lot, especially if you consider that traditional lights waste a lot of energy.

Since LED lights need less energy to work, this will result in lower electricity bills. The less power you draw from your electricity provider, the lower your bills will be. For most people, a drop in their electricity bills is one of the biggest advantages of LED lighting.

4. Fewer Light Bulbs Needed

One of the biggest advantages of LED technology is that it distributes light better. Incandescent lights, for instance, spread too much light in all directions. This spreading often illuminates areas that don’t need light, such as your ceiling.

That is light (and energy) that goes to waste.

LEDs, as mentioned above, produce focused, concentrated light. They emit light in a single direction, minimizing spreading and waste. In short, you’d need fewer LED bulbs to enjoy the same brightness from traditional lights.

Again, fewer light bulbs result in lower energy consumption. The less power your household uses, the lower your electricity bills.

5. Longer Lifespan

One LED bulb will last for up to 50,000 hours. That’s enough reason LED lighting is worth it. Especially when you compare it to incandescent bulbs, which have a lifespan of only 1,000 hours.

That means that over the life of a single LED light bulb, you’d have to buy about 50 traditional light bulbs. So, even if LEDs have a higher upfront cost, their longer life completely makes up for it.

6. Reduced Energy Consumption Brings Emissions Down

The reduced energy consumption of LED lights benefits the environment too. Their lower energy demand from power plants help decrease greenhouse gas emissions. Even their own carbon dioxide emissions are lower than those of traditional lighting products.

In fact, global use of LEDs has kicked greenhouse gas emissions down by over half a billion ton in 2017. This amount is comparable to what more than 160 coal-fired power plants produce.

What’s more, the EPA calculated a savings of 88 terawatt-hours of electricity from the use of LED lights. That’s the kind of savings we can get if we everyone used LEDs from 2010 to 2030. 88 terawatt-hours can already power seven million homes in one year.

7. Fewer Lights Needed Reduces Raw Material Consumption

We’ve already established that incandescent and fluorescent lights burn out faster than LEDs. That’s why there’s always a high demand for them since users have to replace dead bulbs quite often. To address this demand, manufacturers have to keep using raw materials.

This continued and high demand for raw materials put a huge toll on the environment. So, imagine if we all switched to LEDs, which again, lasts 50,000 hours per bulb. That would no doubt lift a huge burden off of the environment.

Make the Switch Now to Enjoy the Benefits of LED Lighting

All these benefits of LED lighting outweigh their initial high upfront cost. The more LED bulbs you use and replace your old bulbs with, the more savings you get to enjoy. Plus, you’re doing not only yourself a huge favor, but also protect the environment.

So, what are you waiting for? Consider making the switch now to LED lights!

Need more details on how LEDs work and how you can make the most use of them? Then be sure to check out our site’s LED technology section!