At home

Lowering lighting costs

Follow these helpful tips to keep your lighting costs down:

  • Avoid having several lights activated by one switch. Use separate switches for each light.
  • Use the lowest wattage light needed to adequately light an area.
  • Use task or special purpose lighting to supplement general lighting wherever possible.
  • Keep lights and fittings clean - dusty or dirty bulbs and fittings can reduce light output by up to 50 per cent.
  • Avoid using downlights, as several are needed to light an average-sized room. They can also lead to heat loss through the recessed holes where they sit in the ceiling - and for recessed downlights, you must remember to give at least 50mm clearance between the lights and bulk insulation material, and 200mm clearance between the lights and any combustible building element.
  • Avoid using multiple-bulb fittings, as this is an inefficient form of lighting. Around six 25-watt bulbs are required to produce the equivalent light output of a single 100-watt bulb.
  • A room with light coloured walls will appear brighter and better lit than a room with dark surfaces.
  • Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) or LEDs.
  • Turn off lights when not required.
  • Do not leave outdoor lights on all night or during the day. Use timers or sensors.

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Page last updated: 10 December 2015