Of course there are other energy efficient options besides CFLs. Eco halogens provide an advantage over CFLs in that they allow the light to be dimmed, there’s also not that pesky waiting period that CFLs sometimes need to warm up. When it comes to eco-friendliness, standard halogen bulbs are better than old-fashioned incandescent but still much worse than standard eco bulbs. It doesn’t help that most halogen fittings feature three or more bulbs.
Halogens run very hot that’s how they work. If anything touches them they’re hot enough to set it on fire. It’s now in the [Australian] Standard that you need clearance between the lights and any insulation material but [with all the issues with roof fires] insulation got a bad reputation. Insulation is and always has been a good thing; its halogen downlights and poor installation of insulation in conjunction with lighting that can be extremely dangerous.
What is Kelvin?
In lighting terms, “colour” doesn’t mean choosing between a red or blue strobe; Its about considering the space the light will feature in and the kind of light you’d like emitted in that part of your home. Colours aren’t standardised; they’re generally measured by Kelvin, which is a unit of temperature measurement. A high kelvin colour is very, very blue, almost like daylight. As you come down to 2700 Kelvin, you’re closer [in colour] to what the old incandescent were like in the living and dining rooms where you’ll likely enjoy warm comfortable levels of lighting, look for around 2700 Kelvin (usually sold as “warm light”). In the kitchen you may want to whiten things up a bit by ramping the Kelvin up to a cooler. More energy efficient than incandescent but they give up you a crisp clear light and they’re generally cheaper than fluorescents.
If there’s s buzzword in today’s lighting world, its LEDs, Light Emitting Diodes work by moving electrons in a semiconductor material. With no heat generation no UVs emitted and even better energy efficiency than CFLs (go percent better than incandescent), it’s no wonder green homemakers visit specialists asking about LEDs.
LED will eventually be the light source of the future but it needs more time and more research before it’s truly reliable or truly cost effective. Shapes and sizes, including those sitting flush to the roof but if your retrofitting halogen downlights you’ll need an electrician to switch them over as the down lighting goes through a transformer and the CFL won’t run through that.
For new man, a lack of consulting lighting designers may have been contributed to the popularity of his biggest lightning no-no, which is down lightning. Its popular because builders and architects specify it but they don’t have lightning design training put in too many halogen downlights and then put a dimmer on them so no one can complain there’s too much light. It’s very important and inefficient lighting design, simply spotlighting bits of the floor. A [hanging] pendant is the best type of lighting for residential use. It will throw light up and sideways and a lot of it will reflect back in and you’ll get a general ambient glow.
Manufacturers have expanded the application of LEDs by “clustering” the small bulbs. The first clustered bulbs were used for battery powered items such as flashlights and headlamps. Today, LED bulbs are made using as many as 180 bulbs per cluster, and encased in diffuser lenses which spread the light in wider beams. Now available with standard bases which fit common household light fixtures, LEDs are the next generation in home lighting. LED downlights currently sell for about seven times the price of the situation is changing fast. Lighting makes such a big difference in your home and to splash that sort of colour through your home. All your interior decoration looks awful.
For more information on how ENERGY EFFICIENT LIGHTING PART 2 will affect the energy efficiency of your house, or you would like to know more about the service Sustainability WA provide including an Energy Rating or Energy Efficiency certification for your project please contact us here or phone 08 9537 2000
Other terms sometimes used to describe an energy rating includes: Energy Star, Energy Audit, Energy Ratings, Energy Efficiency Certificate, Energy Assessment, HERS, BER or EPC.
Sustainability WA can help you with them all!