Energy-Efficient Lighting

Upgrading lighting is a low-cost way to save energy and money in your home whether you own or rent. In comparison to conventional lighting options (such as incandescents, fluorescents, and halogens), energy-efficient light bulbs use less energy, cost less to operate, and can last up to 25 years longer.

Light Bulb Options

There are three primary options for energy-efficient lighting sold today. When shopping for light bulbs, always look for the ENERGY STAR® logo on the packaging. This is the easiest and most reliable way to ensure the light bulb you purchase delivers exceptional features while using less energy and saving more money in the long run.

  LED Light Bulb LED Fixture Smart Lightbulb
Overview Light-emitting diode (LED) light bulbs are electronic devices that light up when an electrical current moves through them. LEDs are more compact, easier to maintain, and more efficient than conventional lighting options. LED fixtures are electronic devices whose light source is built into the fixture. Whether or not the fixture comes with a light bulb or array depends on the type (LED-ready fixtures vs. integrated LED fixtures). Smart light bulbs (Internet-capable LED light bulbs) are a relatively new technology that allows lighting to be customized, scheduled, and controlled remotely. Smart light bulbs are often paired with a built-in application that can be controlled from a mobile device. Features on smart light bulbs vary.
Pros
  • Uses significantly less energy than conventional light bulb options, lowering utility bills
  • Maintains easy, quick, and low-cost installation
  • Maintains a longer life span than conventional light bulbs, lasting up to 25 years
  • Increases comfort, ambiance, and productivity
  • Covers a wide array of applications for indoor and outdoor spaces (such as table lamps and security floodlights)
  • Offers superior dimming controls to adjust lighting to suit your room or application
  • Fits into most new and existing fixtures from a variety of manufacturers
  • Uses less energy than LED light bulbs, further lowering utility bills
  • Increases comfort, ambiance, and productivity
  • Delivers a higher quality of light and lumen output than LED light bulbs 
  • Allows maximum control over light output and placement
  • Maintains a longer life span than LED light bulbs
  • Provides excellent performance for controls and dimming
  • Lowers utility bills through less wasted light and heat
  • Increases comfort, ambiance, and productivity 
  • Offers the ability to adjust the level of brightness on the light bulb without the need to install a dimmer switch
  • Allows you to control your lights even when you are not at home, as long as you have an Internet connection
  • Provides the ability to automatically change the color of the lighting, depending on the type
  • Pairs with other smart devices, such as smart thermostats and security systems
Considerations
  • Higher price point than conventional light bulbs
  • When used with a traditional fixture, not all features of LED bulbs are available
  • If you have fully enclosed fixtures, not all LED replacement bulbs are suitable (must check the packaging)
  • If replacing existing lighting fixture, may be a higher price point than LED light bulbs (however, prices have been drastically dropping)
  • If hard-wired fixtures are not present, electrician services would be needed to install them
  • If you have conventional lighting fixtures, less variety is available in style of fixtures (although options are drastically increasing)
  • Higher price points than conventional light bulbs and LEDs
  • For maximum efficiency and use, access to an application on your phone or computer is required
  • Has a shorter life span than LED light bulbs and LED fixtures
  • May require software updates and more frequent maintenance
Operations and Maintenance LED light bulbs are compact and far more durable than conventional options. They are easy to maintain, lasting up to 25 years. They also require minimal to no rewiring when screws- or pin-based bulbs are replaced. Once installed, LED fixtures require very little maintenance and have a longer life span than LED light bulbs. Smart light bulbs may require software updates, depending on the type and system. These light bulbs can last up to 15 years, depending on the type and model.

In addition to choosing the right type of light bulb, it will be important to consider brightness and color. Visit NYSERDA’s one-stop-shop lighting guideLink opens in new window - close new window to return to this page. for design ideas and information to select the right light bulb for your home.