You can give yourself and the planet a nifty gift this holiday season by practicing eco-friendly habits and choosing LED Christmas lights. LED lights are inexpensive (often less than $10 for a 50-bulb strand), sturdy, glow brightly and most importantly they use very little electricity.
Good Green Habits for Christmas Lights
- Decorate one outdoor area (your porch, a tree or plant) with lights instead of your entire home.
- Turn on lights only during key viewing hours.
- Use a timer so you don’t forget to turn them off.
- Choose LED Christmas lights instead of incandescent lights since they:
- reduce energy consumption by as much as 90% compared to traditional incandescent bulbs.
- produce bright light for up to 20 holiday seasons.
- generate almost no heat, reducing fire potential.
PG&E in California says switching to LED lights pays off. The following comparison is based on an annual use of 45 days/5 hours daily at a 2010 residential rate of $0.156 kWh.
Qty. of Lights Type of Light Power demand per light (watts) Annual Energy Usage (kWh) Average Annual Operating Costs 300 Large Incandescent 7.00 472.5 $73.71 300 Mini Incandescent 0.45 30.38 $4.74 300 LED Lights 0.43 2.90 $0.45
NOTE: If LED lights aren’t in your budget right now, remember to look for them at after-holiday sales.
STAFF CHAT: LED lights are looking better than ever. My favorite LED bulb color is red and least favorite is blue. And, I’m jazzed because although my family spent $90 on LED lighting, we expect to save at least $250 on our electricity bill this holiday season!