Once upon a time, people dreaded tax season. This isn’t often the case anymore, with more than 80% of Americans qualifying for a refund from the government. If you are part of that majority, then this means extra money in your pocket this spring—and if you are lucky, then that might shed some light on the subject of home improvements.
Using your tax refund to make improvements to your home is a smart move, as it means you are putting that surplus to work for you throughout the year, not to mention getting started on your deduction potential for next year.
Lighting Up Your Tax Refund
Updating the lighting in your home is a smart move, especially if you are living in an older home that has a lot of older inefficient light fixtures. There have been a few major changes to the energy saving potential of light bulbs in the past 10 years, and if you haven’t made any changes in your own home then you could be paying way too much in your utility usage every month. According to the US Department of Energy, simply swapping out a few light bulbs in your home for the new energy efficient kind can save you more than $75 over the course of a year—and that is before making any other changes. The reason for this is because old light bulbs lost 90% of their energy through heat. Yes, they’d produce light, but to get there the bulb would get very hot. This resulted in a lot of wasted energy; because unless you were using an easy bake oven there is no need for a light bulb to get that hot.
The Best Bulbs on the Market:
The new light bulbs stay cool and have a much improved lifespan. The Department of Energy recommends that we use bulbs that are LED, CFL or halogen incandescent.
- Halogen incandescent: Use a small capsule of gas around a filament to improve efficiency and work well with dimmers
- CFLs: Compact Fluorescent Lamps are the bulbs with the curls, and they work off the same principals of the fluorescent light you’ll see in warehouses, garages and classrooms. On average, a CFL bulb will pay for itself in just 9 months.
- LEDs: LED (light emitting diode) lights are used in all sorts of electronics and toys because of how reliable they are. This is a solid-state lighting method that uses semiconductors to convert electricity into light.
So which is the best option for your home? The average LED light uses about a quarter of the energy of a traditional bulb, and will last 25 times longer than the old bulb. LED lights are the most reliable and efficient of all energy efficient bulbs.
Make lighting improvements in your home by changing all the lighting fixtures to deliver a consistent glow by making the bulbs consistent from room to room. Take it on one weekend at a time and make small improvements by changing out old lighting fixtures, updating the wiring on old lamps and getting a consistent glow through the entire home. You may be surprised how a few changes to your lighting fixtures can really make your home shine!
Here at All Weather Contractors, we are constantly striving to help our customers to be as energy efficient as possible. If you need to make any changes to your home’s HVAC system, contact us for an estimate.