Replace your inefficient light bulbs

Why? Inefficient incandescent bulbs, despite their low initial price tag, are costly to run and replace in the long term. Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) use about 75% less energy and last at least ten times longer, saving you money on energy bills and lighting costs. Halogen light bulbs and light-emitting diodes (LEDs) also provide high-quality light while using less energy than inefficient incandescent bulbs.

What to look for:

  • Find a CFL bulb with about one-quarter to one-third of the wattage of your old incandescent bulb — CFL bulbs require less power to produce the same amount of light. Packaging will list equivalent wattage, so you can match the new bulb to what you formerly used.
  • CFL bulbs come in different colors, light intensities and shapes to accommodate most lighting fixtures.
  • Choose CFL bulbs with the ENERGY STAR® label for guaranteed quality, efficiency and savings.
  • You can find CFL bulbs in most stores where incandescent bulbs are sold.
  • Some CFLs do work on dimmer switches and in 3-way applications. Check packaging for more information.

Things to think about: First, install CFL bulbs in the lights that you use most often, like those in the kitchen or family room. Consider replacing all your bulbs if you can. If you're planning on using CFL bulbs outside, choose a lamp labeled for cold weather. CFL bulbs need to be specially recycled when they burn out. You can log onto www.myenergystar.com to find a retailer that recycles CFLs in your town.

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Save up to $115 over bulb life

Up-front costs: $2 to $4 for CFLs to replace 60- to 100-watt incandescent bulbs

Pays back in: Less than one year

Rebate: National Grid offers instant price discounts on ENERGY STAR® light bulbs and fixtures. Learn more about all our lighting rebates.

Recycling: CFL bulbs do contain a small amount of mercury, so please remember to always recycle your CFLs in the proper manner.