Lighting accounts for about 20% of annual household electricity bills, or approximately $200 per year. Your actual cost depends on the number of sockets for light bulbs that you have, the wattages of the bulb and how many hours a day they are on.
Switching from incandescent to ENERGY STAR® qualified CFLs is one of the simplest and most affordable steps you can take to use less energy and reduce your electricity costs. CFL’s can last up to 10 times longer than an incandescent bulb saving on bulb replacement cost and time. Switch one average light bulb to a CFL, and you can save around $42 in energy costs over the CFL's life. In partnership with BED and Efficiency Vermont, many Vermont lighting retailers offer special pricing on CFLs. There are no mail-in rebates to fill out, just a low price at the cash register of your favorite lighting retailers. While supplies last, select ENERGY STAR CFLs are just 99 cents at participating Vermont retailers. That’s up to $9 off the regular price on each bulb
Click here to find special pricing at a near-by participating retailer by zip code search.
Light-emitting diode (LED’s) are a rapidly emerging technology that can offer benefits over incandescent bulbs and even today’s compact fluorescent light bulbs such as lower power consumption, longer life, compact size, good dimming capabilities and reliable operation in cold temperatures for outside lighting.
BED has not yet begun promoting residential LEDs aggressively. Many available LED bulbs vary in quality, energy usage and function. For example, most LED bulbs produce a directional beam, common in commercial settings with spot, track and recessed fixtures, rather than the evenly spread-out light typical of a standard incandescent or CFL bulb that is more typically used in homes. New LED bulbs are appearing on the market frequently that may be better suited for residential usage; however, we are still concerned about the quality and performance for residential applications.
Quality LEDs are still expensive, and although they can save energy when compared to incandescents, and even some CFLs, the monetary payback time is long for bulbs that are often on for only a few hours a day, as is the case for typical residential use. Commercial lighting is typically on many more hours per day so the energy and bulb replacement cost savings are much higher.
Currently for residential customers, BED is offering rebates for select ENERGY STAR® qualified LED Downlights. Some Vermont lighting retailers offer already-discounted pricing on LEDs, or an instant coupon good for $10 off the regular price of ENERGY STAR LED downlight products.
If you see the ENERGY STAR®
logo you have the confidence of knowing that the product you about to purchase has been designated among the most energy efficient and can save you hundreds of dollars over its life. ENERGY STAR® is the brand name developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to signify energy-efficient products. This voluntary program is a partnership among the EPA, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), product manufacturers, local utilities, and retailers. The agencies set energy efficiency criteria for specific consumer and commercial products. Products meeting or exceeding the energy efficiency criteria established by the agencies are awarded the ENERGY STAR® label, which you will find on lighting products, home appliances, home electronics, office equipment, heating and cooling equipments and windows. BED and Efficiency Vermont offer mail-in or in-store cash incentives for many of these products including refrigerators, clothes washers, dehumidifiers and select home electronics.
BED and VGS work closely together on behalf of our mutual customers to ensure that they take full advantage of all available energy efficiency services and incentives. Visit the website or call at 802-863-4511 ext. 320 to learn more about VGS’s energy efficiency programs and invite your apartment building owner to do the same.
CVOEO Weatherization Service (for income eligible households)
BED, Vermont Gas Systems and Efficiency Vermont have combined forces with CVOEO to offer a comprehensive energy efficiency service for income-eligible rental (or owner-occupied) households. Insulation, air sealing, heating system work, major appliances, lighting and ventilation systems are evaluated and upgraded as needed. BED and Vermont Gas contract with CVOEO to deliver electric and natural gas efficiency services for income-eligible households.
Please visit CVOEO for more information or call at 1-800-545-1084 for more details and to learn if you qualify for the service.