Lighting options are significant during all seasons of the year. During the fall and winter seasons when the sun does not shine as much, it might be a time to consider some changes or upgrades.
Here are some small tidbits to consider this current season in order to save you money and leave you with a sense of satisfaction.
Lighting Areas of Your Home
With natural light slowly fading, as the months grow colder, it should be time to consider low voltage LED lights. Low voltage lights are very energy efficient in comparison to the halogen bulbs. In addition, this can save you money to put towards other payments on your home.
Knowing Lighting Options
There are a number of different types of lighting available across the spectrum. All have their advantages and their disadvantages.
Ambient: Ambient is a hidden source of light that washes a room with a glow. It flattens an interior and creates very little shadow. A wall sconce is an example of ambient lighting, as are paper lanterns. Use of a dimmer can also provide ambient light.
Accent: Directional lighting or lighting that adds interest or highlights a certain object or unusual architectural feature in a room. A bulb and some kind of shield to direct the light are all that’s needed for this type of lighting. Halogen spotlights and table lamps with opaque shades are good ways to achieve accent lighting.
Task: Task lighting is just that; lighting that’s used to perform daily activities such as reading, cooking, shaving, putting on makeup and so on. Effective task lighting enhances visual clarity and keeps the eyes from getting tired, so it needs to be glare-free.
Aesthetic: Lighting itself can be a work of art. A neon sculpture would be purely decorative and an example of aesthetic lighting. A spotlight illuminating a statue on a pedestal or portrait on the wall is also artistic. This type of lighting also needs to be used along with other lighting types.
Natural: Sunlight, candlelight, and firelight; this is a light that moves and is sometimes referred to as kinetic. The quality of natural light, sunlight, in particular, depends on many things — time of day, weather, what season it is. Fall has a different light than summer, for instance. The setting sun gives a different kind of light than midday sun and so on. Perhaps the morning sun coming over the horizon could bask your kitchen in a welcoming orange glow.
Use Outdoor Lighting Sparsely
Leaving your exterior lighting on for long periods of time can especially raise your electrical bills. Before you go to bed for the evening, consider turning those exterior lights off. Another alternative would be to invest in timers or motion detectors to use the lights when they are needed. Even using solar sensors allow for solar sensors to know when the sun is setting and the lights automatically turn on.
Dimming the Lights
Dimmers not only allow you to change the amount of light present within the room for ambiance or certain activities. For example dimming a halogen bulb by 20% saves about 18% of the energy costs to operate it. Dimmer switches also make your light bulbs last longer. A halogen light bulb normally lasting 5-6 months can last up to 3 or 4 years. If you need to add the dimmer, contact your local electrician who can install this for you. As an alternative, if you are a DIY individual, a simple search on the Internet can yield the right choice.
Use Path Lighting
This is more of an aesthetic lighting upgrade, but one of interesting. Why not welcome your guests coming to your home at night with a well-illuminated pathway. There are series of different lighting options and lighting choices. All you would need is a shovel, low voltage cable, and a plug-in transformer.
If you are able to spread the lights in varying intervals between each other, you create an interesting aesthetic for your home.