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Home lighting makes a big change this year

(NC) Great lighting in your home is not just practical. It's also a way to embellish your décor and showcase your colour scheme. From the entryway to the kitchen, lighting helps guests feel welcome and creates ambiance while providing adequate illumination. Choosing the right lighting, however, isn't always easy.

Lighting has evolved significantly in recent years with the introduction of energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs, low-voltage light-emitting diodes (LEDs), and even with Edison-inspired design bulbs. These new methods shed light onto a whole new world of possibilities for energy conservation and style in your home.

At the beginning of 2014, the federal government, in its efforts to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, began phasing out the production of incandescent light bulbs, starting with those delivering 75- and 100-watts. The 40- and 60-watt bulbs will be phased out starting next December, so now would be the right time to think about new lights for your home.

To get us started, the lighting experts at Rona offer their insights and tips on the best ways to use energy efficient bulbs:

Compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) use as little as 25% of the energy consumed by regular incandescent bulbs and last up to 10 times longer. Replace incandescent bulbs in the most commonly used areas of your home, such as the kitchen or living room. A CFL can save you more than five times its purchase price in electricity costs over its lifetime.

Light emitting diodes (LEDs) use as little as 15% of the energy of traditional bulbs and produce no heat. Use these bulbs in places where heat could be a problem or fire hazard, such as in shade lamps.

Halogen lights are an incandescent light that uses halogen gas, which increases its longevity and allows it to operate at a higher temperature. Because of their small size, halogens can be used in fixtures such as pot lights and desk lamps.

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