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Go Green in Style: Trendy Energy-Efficient Lights

Earlier this year, the United States began phasing out incandescent light bulbs for more energy-efficient options like LEDs and CFLs. These aren’t your Grandma’s bulbs, so don’t use them in your Grandma’s lamp! There are tons of modern lamps that are specifically designed with LED and CFL bulbs in mind, so there's no better time for an upgrade.

Photo: JesseLeeDesigns | Etsy

The latest generation of energy-efficient light bulbs is brighter, bigger and can last up to 22 years. By going green with these bulbs, you’re not only saving energy, you’re saving yourself the hassle of changing the bulbs and the dough forked over every time a bulb burns out!

Along with longer life spans, the new energy-efficient LED and CFL bulbs give you the freedom to customize your light. Instead of focusing solely on bulb wattage, you’ll be able to play around with the quality of light and its suitability for the colors in a room, as well as the way different bulbs distribute light. For a “natural spectrum” lamp, which mimics sunlight at noon, opt for a lamp with a Kelvin rating of 5000+. For warmer, yellow light, choose a Kelvin rating of 3000 or below. To learn more, read: Design Implications of CFLs.

About the Energy Independence and Security Act: The new energy standards call for a gradual change, which started with 100-watt bulbs in January 2012, and will end with 40-watt bulbs in January 2014. There are a few exempt specialty lights, including appliance lamps, rough service bulbs, 3-way, colored lamps, stage lighting and plant lights. To be clear, the federal regulations are not outlawing incandescent lighting outright, only placing new efficiency standards on the bulbs, which will benefit consumers in the long run. To learn more about the EISA, read: CFL is the New Incandescent: Are You Ready for the Switch?

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