It used to be that choosing a light bulb was simple, but technical advances...and a flood of new products have triggered the biggest evolution in the lighting industry since Edison was around. Consumers have more choices than ever.
(PRWEB) February 23, 2012
Switching to energy-efficient light bulbs is one of the fastest and easiest ways to conserve energy and protect the environment this Earth Day. Developed by Eco Hatchery, the free Light Bulb Finder mobile app enables users to decide which energy-efficient bulbs are right for their own homes and budgets. The app shows how much energy can be saved by replacing one or multiple bulbs and what the total carbon footprint improvement will be.
Named “Best Overall App” by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in its Apps for the Environment Challenge, Light Bulb Finder is available as a free download on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Android mobile devices.
Walking through the home or store aisle, app users get instant recommendations for energy-saving bulbs with the light quality and fit that mimics their traditional incandescent bulbs. For each recommendation, the app displays financial payback and environmental impact information, enabling users to make informed decisions. Bulbs can be purchased through the app or at local stores.
A typical household can save over $110 in annual energy bills by making the switch. That’s money most homeowners would happily keep in the bank or spend on other things.
“If you think you already have switched all your bulbs, take a closer look, especially at specialty fixtures. The average U.S. home has over 50 lighting fixtures, of which 32 still have regular, inefficient bulbs,” said Adam Borut, president of Eco Hatchery, developer of the smartphone app. “Lighting accounts for over 14 percent of the average home’s electricity bill, so the savings potential is significant.”
Changing just one more bulb, like a kitchen spot or porch light, will have a positive impact. If every U.S. household replaces one bulb, it would prevent 90 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, the equivalent of taking 7.5 million cars off the road, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists.
Energy-efficient bulbs may cost more up-front, but the overall cost of buying and powering them is significantly less in the long run, plus they do not have to be changed as frequently. Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs, or CFLs, last on average eight times longer than incandescent bulbs, and Light Emitting Diodes, LEDs, last 25 or more times longer.
“It used to be that choosing a light bulb was simple, but technical advances, federal efficiency standards and a flood of new products have triggered the biggest evolution in the lighting industry since Edison was around. Consumers have more choices than ever,” said Borut.
As choice has increased, so has consumer confusion. Choosing the right bulb no longer is about wattage and shape. Consumers need to consider the type of fixture, the lumen output (a measure of brightness), the color temperature (warm vs. cool light), not to mention the price of the bulb and electricity cost over time. The Light Bulb Finder app cuts through the confusion and identifies the right bulbs for the right fixtures.
The app is not affiliated with any retailers or bulb manufacturers. It is supported primarily through municipal, utility and other regional programs that promote energy-saving incentives and local resources through the app. Eco Hatchery also offers a customizable web version of the app, accessible via computer and any browser-enabled mobile device.
In preparation for the Earth Day, employers, schools, and community organizations can download a free Earth Day Toolkit that includes a Light Bulb Finder web banner, guidelines for CFL disposal, videos, app images, and other resources at http://lightbulbfinder.net/resources.php
LIGHT BULB FINDER USER SAVINGS IN 2011*:
- CO2 equivalent cars off the road: 661
- kWh Per Year: 5,859,573
- Dollars Per Year: $731,243
- Dollars - Lifetime: $3,380,928
*Based on aggregated user opt-in data.
Eco Hatchery, LLC is a software and mobile app developer specializing in residential energy efficiency and sustainability: http://www.ecohatcheryapps.com and http://www.ecohatchery.com . For more information on the Light Bulb Finder app and Earth Day resources please visit http://www.lightbulbfinder.net . Connect with Light Bulb Finder on Twitter http://twitter.com/#!/LightBulbFinder and Eco Hatchery at http://twitter.com/#!/ecohatchery