Using and saving energy

Lighting

Lighting can account for about 7% of the energy used in your home.

The most efficient way to light your home is with natural light. Use sunlight wherever possible before turning on an electrical light.

Skylights and light tubes can be fitted to existing roofs and let in more light than a window of the same size. Choose skylights with solar control glazing or shutters so you can prevent them from heating rooms in summer.

Using energy efficient light globes and using lights in your home in an efficient way can minimise your running costs and lower your greenhouse gas emissions.

Types of light globes

Energy efficient light globes give you the most light or lumens for the amount of electricity used. Use the lowest wattage you can to provide an adequate level of light for the space.

Different types of globes use different amounts of energy (watts) to produce the same amount of light. Incandescent light globes are no longer available for sale in Australia.

Halogen globes

If you have halogen downlights, consider replacing them with alternative lighting or LED downlights. An average halogen downlight uses between 35 and 50 watts (W) and has a transformer that uses about 10W. If you have 10 downlights in a room, you could be using 450-600W per hour to light a single room.

As a precaution, most downlights need clearance in the ceiling from any ceiling insulation to prevent the risk of fire as they generate a lot of heat.

Low voltage downlights

Low-voltage downlights are a type of incandescent light best suited to task lighting ie illuminating specific areas such as bench tops or desks.

Low voltage does not mean low energy use. Using multiple downlights to light a room is very inefficient, as each downlight and transformer combination can be the equivalent of a 60W incandescent light bulb.

Compact fluorescent and LED downlights

Halogen downlights can often be replaced with their equivalent lamps that use fluorescent or LED technology. These new styles of lamps may be more expensive but their cost is offset by longevity and lower energy consumption.

Compact fluorescent lights come in different styles and sizes. Check that the light bulb you intend to install will fit into the light fitting.

Compact fluorescent globes

Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) globes are an energy-efficient option and are usually designed to fit into conventional bayonet or screw fitting sockets as a replacement for inefficient incandescent bulbs.

CFLs are five times more efficient and have longer lifetimes than incandescent light bulbs. They come in a range of shapes and can replace incandescent lamps in heritage lights and downlights.

Linear and circular fluorescent globes

Linear and circular fluorescent globes produce very high quality light and can last 10 to 20 times as long as an equivalent incandescent globe, and give off a lot less heat. Because of these factors, they are commonly used in commercial and industrial areas.

LED globes

LED lights are usually designed to fit into conventional bayonet or screw fitting sockets as a replacement for inefficient incandescent bulbs.

LED lights have long lifespans and use about 85% less energy than halogen globes. As they are relatively new technology, they can be expensive to purchase.

Lighting running costs

While the running cost for a single globe is very low, the average Australian home has 48 globes, so energy use can add up quickly.

Count the number of globes in your home, check what type they are and look at the average wattage so you can add up the total running costs.

Cost of globes to deliver the same output as a 100W incandescent globe

Type of globe Watts Typical hourly
running cost
Hourly running cost
for all globes
in an average home

Incandescent globe

100W

$0.04

$1.92

Main voltage halogen (globe)

75W

$0.03

$1.44

Low voltage halogen (downlight)

70W

$0.02

$1.11

Compact fluorescent light (CFL)

22W

$0.01

$0.48

Linear fluorescent

14W

$0.005

$0.23

LED globe

14W

$0.005

$0.23

LED downlight

20W

$0.007

$0.34

Note: Estimated running costs are based on the AGL electricity and Origin Energy standing retail contracts. For further methodology information, please contact the Energy Advisory Service.

Cost of globes to deliver the same output as a 60W incandescent globe

Type of globe Watts Typical hourly
running cost
Hourly running cost
for all globes
in an average home

Incandescent globe

60W

$0.02

$0.95

Main voltage halogen (globe)

45W

$0.02

$0.76

Low voltage halogen (downlight)

42W

$0.01

$0.71

Compact fluorescent light (CFL)

13W

$0.005

$0.24

Linear fluorescent

9W

$0.003

$0.15

LED globe

9W

$0.003

$0.15

LED downlight

12W

$0.004

$0.20

Note: Estimated running costs are based on the AGL electricity and Origin Energy standing retail contracts. For further methodology information, please contact the Energy Advisory Service

Switching from incandescent to compact fluorescent globes

Use the following comparison chart as a guide to determine what compact fluorescent light or LED globe wattage is required to produce the same light output as your old incandescent globe.

Incandescent
light bulb
Compact fluorescent
light bulb
LED

25 W

4–6 W

3–4 W

40 W

7–9 W

5–8 W

60 W

11–14 W

8–12 W

75 W

14–17 W

11–17 W

100 W

19–23 W

15–23 W

Fluorescent lights are available in warm white and cool white colour temperatures. Colour temperature is a scientific term used to describe the whiteness of a light source and is measured in kelvins (K).

Warm white (2700K to 3000K) is similar to the light produced by an incandescent globe.

Cool white (4000K to 5000K) is similar to the light produced by a conventional fluorescent tube and is closer to daylight.

Don’t forget to safely dispose of any compact fluorescent light bulbs that have perished or broken.

Disposing of compact fluorescent light bulbs

Compact fluorescent lights bulbs cannot be placed into your kerbside recycling bin because they contain very small amounts of mercury.

Find a free drop-off point for recycling compact fluorescent light globes.

The Australian Government has information about the environmental impacts of mercury and how to clean up and dispose of broken light bulbs.


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Page last updated 17 May 2017

Provided by:
Department of the Premier and Cabinet
URL:
https://www.sa.gov.au/topics/energy-and-environment/using-saving-energy/lighting
Last Updated:
17/05/17
Printed on:
23/10/17
Copyright statement:
SA.GOV.AU is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia Licence. © Copyright 2016