Energy Star Outdoor Lighting
and Your Home or Business
It is easy to see why Energy Star outdoor lighting is so popular among both home and business owners when you consider the long hours that outdoor fixtures operate each night.
What is so special about this type of lighting fixture? To begin with, many of us are familiar with the Energy Star sticker that appears on windows, HVAC systems and appliances in our house and know it has something to do with energy efficiency.
What you might not know is that that beyond the fantastic, yet economical illumination, Energy Star outdoor lighting sometimes offers built-in timers so that the lights come on at dusk and turn off when it becomes light outside. That is a great safety advantage because when the clouds hang low and a storm darkens the sky there will be light to guide your path to the door.
The Best Spots for Outdoor Lighting
The most important thing to do before you start purchasing energy star outdoor lighting is to map out your yard, home and outbuildings to determine where and how much light is needed. Then start looking through printed and online catalogs to decide how you want to feature the light.
You are accessorizing the yard and the design will last quite a while, so decide on a theme.
A traditional and popular display is wall-mounted fixtures by the door, on either side or both sides. Of course, ceiling fixtures add the perfect ambiance to the exterior entryway, whether it is the porch or overhangs that lead up to the door. They provide a sense of security when an L-shaped turn leaves a hiding spot before reaching the front door.
Remember upper levels. Not only can you line driveways and walkway with lowlights directed downwards towards the walking area, you can cast a warm glow with illumination from lights on posts, fences and poles and in your container gardens.
They don't have to appear practical because you can choose from beautiful sconces and frames with tinted glass. Perhaps a curved beveled glass featured in an aluminum shape will appeal to you.
There are also fixtures with built-in dusk-to-dawn sensors or motion detectors that turn on or up the lights when needed.
Protection against the Weather
Some Energy Star outdoor lighting is designed for inclement weather. Read the data on each fixture or CFL that you consider to find out its durability. Some fixtures are rated at and below 0 degrees F. Get weatherproof Energy Star CFLs that are designed to hold up against the rain and moisture, such as fog and snow.
Energy Star Home Requirements
New houses need to achieve EPA standards for energy efficiency of 20 to 30 percent better than traditional houses. When you think of the requirements for an Energy Star rating, consider these five areas homes must meet:
- Efficient HVAC systems and installation
- Properly fit ducts and construction
- Energy Star appliances and lighting
- High-Performance windows
- Effective insulation systems
It is good for the environment, the neighborhood, and for your home or business.
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