January 1 was lights outs for incandescent bulbs

Photo Credit: Google

Photo Credit: Google

It’s official: January 1, 2014 marked the end of the incandescent light bulb. While remaining inventory can still be sold, it is illegal for US companies to manufacture or import 40, 60, 75, or 100 watt incandescent bulbs. This is due to an energy conservation law signed by President Bush in 2007. Some estimate the switch will save more than $40 billion in energy costs by 2030.

You now have three alternatives to incandescent bulbs: more efficient halogen bulbs, LED, and CFL bulbs. Most of the problems noted by consumers in years past have been solved. You can now buy energy efficient CFL bulbs that light immediately and have a pleasant light color. LED bulbs, while more expensive than CFLs, last up to 22 years. The typical incandescent bulb lasts less than 18 months.

This means you can now install LED bulbs in hard to reach spots and not worry about it again for literally years. You can run outside lights for security at nominal cost and maintenance is almost nonexistent. Lighting is the top deterrent to residential crime like burglary so security lighting outside your home can save peace of mind as well as energy.

It may take some time to get used to the ways packaging describes light intensity and color on energy efficient bulbs. No problem. Just tell us where you need light and we will recommend the right bulbs for you.

Only 3 in 10 consumers plan to stockpile incandescent bulbs. Most people will make the transition and barely notice the difference, except that you no longer need to remind the kids to turn out the lights when they leave the room. In terms of cost, you can leave these new bulbs on without burning through money. In fact, your ceiling fans or electric coffee pot use more electricity.

So if your New Year’s Resolution this year was to save energy, you’re in luck. Saving energy is automatic. We’re always happen to enlighten our customers. Give us a call if you want to know more, especially about new LED and halogen incandescent bulbs.

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Getting Ready For 2014: Understanding Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs

 

Photo Credit: Google

Photo Credit: Google

Federal legislation such as the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) requiring the phase-out of incandescent bulbs by 2014 has made lighting a confusing topic for consumers. Now, consumers are faced with understanding lingo like wattage, lumens, and voltage in order to buy light bulbs. The issue becomes even more complex when talking about specialized light bulbs for healthcare equipment, aquariums, electronics and appliances, and cars and trucks.

Consumer Household Bulbs

Projectors and televisions, electronics with displays, cameras, laptops, cell phones, toys, and vintage electronic devices… they all use light bulbs in one form or another. Trying to find an energy-efficient light bulb for your refrigerator or your microwave may not be as easy as walking into your neighborhood hardware store. Further, as manufacturers have rushed to supply appropriate lighting, there have been recalls, such as one in May 2013 affecting LED light bulbs produced by Lighting Science Group. We can supply your household light bulb needs, including full-spectrum CFL, LED, and halogen bulbs. We can also supply specialized bulbs for your home appliances, including your refrigerator!

Commercial Bulbs

The legislative mandate will have a huge impact upon businesses and industrial facilities, which face swapping out their incandescent bulbs. We assist businesses of all sizes with this. Just give us a call and we’ll tell you the most economical way to comply with legislation while reducing upfront lighting costs.

Compact Fluorescent Bulbs

Compact fluorescent bulbs produce more light and have a longer life than incandescent bulbs. They use very small amounts of mercury, so they should not be thrown out in your regular trash. Earth 911 is a clearinghouse of information for where to dispose of CFL bulbs if your local government does not have a special disposal or recycling option. CFL bulbs come in many shapes besides the familiar spiral, including plug-in bases, circles and tubes, and chandelier and globe screw-in light bulbs. Use a “dark sky” CFL to keep light from spreading into areas such as a neighbor’s yard.  Reflectors have a built-in reflective surface that helps CFL bulbs to throw off more light, which can assist In providing security. CFL bulbs are less likely than incandescent to break and you can also buy special CFL for exterior use that are shatter-resistant.

Halogen Bulbs

Halogen bulbs are relatively inexpensive, but generate a lot of heat. Care needs to be used when replacing them and they can react to other substances. They emit a bright white life and have  a long lifespan. Halogen bulbs use a halogen gas, a poisonous chemical, with a tungsten filament. Because they are fragile, they are not recommended for homes with small children except in difficult-to-reach fixtures.

LED Bulbs

LED bulbs are light emitting diodes – a small electronic device that lights when electricity is passed through it. These can be designed as very small bulbs for use in electronics displays. They can be expensive, which is offset by their long life. They generate more heat than halogen and xenon bulbs, but less than CFL bulbs. They have an intense, focused light that is ideal for task lighting, not ambient lighting. They are also used, like halogen and xenon bulbs, is specialty auto lighting.

Xenon Bulbs

Xenon light bulbs are often used in specialty auto headlights and in exterior path lighting. They are usually low voltage and can be touched with your bare hand, unlike halogen lights. Xenon bulbs emit a clean white light and may be used in high-intensity discharge (HID) lighting. Festoon xenon light bulbs can be used in either task lighting or for indirect lighting under cabinets and shelves.  When using them in a store with glass or jewelry, choose a clear festoon bulb. Otherwise, frosted bulbs have a wide range of applications.  Xenon is more efficient than halogen, uses less energy, and has a longer life.

Any questions? Call us and we’ll shed more light on the different alternative to incandescent light bulbs as we enter 2014.

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Black LIghts And Bug Zappers

Photo Credit: Black light news

Photo Credit: Black light news

 

Black lights are used for decorative effects, in medicine for diagnostic and healing purposes, for the detection of counterfeit money, for curing resins, and also for detecting fluorescent minerals in rock and fluorescence in blood for crime scenes. Black lights often need special fixtures. A Wood’s lamp is used in science and in forensics.

Black light fluorescent tubes are similar to regular tubes, except that they have a dark blue-purple coating. They are available in a variety of sizes and watts, including the F15T8/BLB which is used in standard fluorescent tube fixtures. If you want to spice up your home for Halloween this October, a few black light tubes will due the trick.

Black light tubes are also used for tanning beds. The ultraviolet light is thought not to damage eyes and skin, although overuse can do both.

Another type of UV fluorescent bulb emits ultraviolet light to attract insects, which are then electrocuted by the device. These bulbs emit visible light along with ultraviolet light, so they do not have a purple filter. They appear bluish-purple to the naked eye because the less visible mercury emission spectrum is block by plain glass. These bulbs are designed as “BL” and are not suitable as a replacement for BLB tubes in BLB-designed fixtures.

The first black light was created in 1904 using Wood’s glass as the container for an incandescent bulb. These are the black lights you often find at party stores. They are very inefficient, burn hot, and have a short life. Mercury vapor black lights also use Wood’s glass, but have very high power ratings up to 1000 watts and are used for theatrical displays and concerts. Both types of Wood’s glass lights are primarily decorative.

A Wood’s lamp is used in dermatology to identify some skin diseases. It was first used in 1925 in dermatology to identify fungal infections, and is still used today to detect fungal and bacterial infections and to diagnose tuberculosis, vitiligo, ethylene glycol poisoning, and erythrasma.

Black light is also used to authenticate bank notes, oil painting and antiques. When you go to a club, you will often be stamped with fluorescent ink, which will identify you as a paying guest under a small Wood’s lamp.

Now that we have shed some light on the subject of black lights, call us to order your decorative lights and bug zapper lights

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Lighting Up Fashion With Style

Veronique Cote Sculpture dress

Veronique Cote Sculpture dress

 

Artist Véronique  Côté used hundreds of LED lights and a wire frame to create “Donkey Skin,” a sculptured dress that reflects her interest in fairytales. While this is art and is not meant to be worn daily, fashion and lighting do mix it up, particularly for evening wear.

UK-based CuteCircuit, a fashion tech company, has launched two lines of ready-to-wear dresses and tops embedded with LED lights. Some, like the “K-dress.” allow you to control the color and pattern of your lights. Enlightened by Janet Hansen offers faux fur coats, scarves, and other types of clothing for both men and women that are festooned with color-changing lights. They also create clothing by special order and spectacular costumes for stars such as Britney Spears, Rihanna, and Bow Wow.

Illuminated clothing is priced beyond reach for most of us, but you can go clubbing in a fiber optics LumiTop from LumiGram for 189 euros. Or, if you have some sewing skills and plenty of patience, you can embed flexible, neon-colored LED lighting in just about any garment. You can also create your own glowing wire clothes, similar to those worn by the band Daft Punk, using electroluminescent wire, also known as EL wire. Both are available through eBay. Send us pics of your brightest fashion ideas!

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How Lighting Affects Your Mood…

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Have you noticed when the sun is shining bright outside you feel happy? Do you notice a change in your mood when it’s gloomy outside? Well that is because lighting can affect your mood. Lighting can make you feel relaxed, agitated, happy or sad at any given time. Research show that when its dark your serotonin levels are at the lowest point, but once the light shines it increases your serotonin levels. Which help to shift your mood…  It’s the same as when you are feeling stressed you go into a room light a candle and just sit and relax.

This is also true for places you visit like a restaurant, which has dim lighting and candlelight to create a romantic atmosphere. Or a spa that has set a tone that is serene and relaxed. Even nightclubs have special lighting that put you in the mood to dance the night away. Lighting can even make your marriage proposal or wedding an unforgettable event! So the next time you feel down head outside and let the light shine….

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Light up your summer nights!

I am one of those people who never need a reason to throw a party. Especially during the summer which comes packed with family birthdays. And nothing says summer like hosting a fabulous party outdoors with the warm breeze and cool drinks it makes for a great time. When the sun goes down, the party can still go on…using lighting and creating an ambiance.That is sure to keep your guest happy. Below are some great DIY lighting ideas that can add elegance to your party while illuminating your backyard.

                                                      Twine Light Strings

Photo Courtesy: Google

Photo: Google

                                               String Lights & Paper Lanterns

Photo Credit: Google

Photo : Google

                                                         Hanging Lanterns

Photo Courtesy: Google

Photo : Google

                                                        Mason Jar Lights

Photo Courtesy: Google

Photo: Google

Let’s host a summer Shindig!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Lantern Festival Marks the Finale of Chinese New Year

Red_lanterns

Courtesy: Wikipedia

While the world rings in the new year on January 1, the traditional Chinese New Year takes place over a month after the induction of the new year on the globally employed Roman calendar. The Chinese New Year culminates in the Lantern Festival on the 15th day of celebrations, where families enjoy reunions, traditional foods and dancing, as well as releasing lanterns into the night sky. Despite its name, the festival isn’t exclusive to China; festivals that mark the beginning of the lunisolar new year can be found all over Asia in countries such as Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia, as well as countries as far away as the United States.

The Lantern Festival is a time to enjoy lights, new beginnings, and the company of others. Indeed, in the celebration’s early days, young people were sent to the Lantern Festival to find love, perhaps with the help of a matchmaker. While the festival does not carry the implication anymore, it would be difficult to say that so many beautiful lanterns and the party atmosphere does nothing for one’s romantic side.

Perhaps the most famous part of the festival, releasing lanterns has an important meaning: to let a lantern go is to release one’s old self and welcome a new attitude for a new year. It is an optimistic act that adds to the bright feeling of the night.

But perhaps you can’t hop on a jet to China in time for this year’s February 15th celebration, paperlanternstore.combut you’d love to celebrate at home. Before you start finding fireworks and planning the menu, find the some lanterns to make the night just right. Check out these minimal yet beautiful LED paper lanterns from paperlanternstore.com. The paper diffuses the clear bright light of the LED bulbs, making the paper appear to glow. Stringing some of these paper lanterns around a backyard or a dimmed room will certainly add that magical feeling to your Chinese New Year celebration!

 

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