(NewsUSA) - From the kitchen, basement or even the couch, you can now turn lights on or off remotely, create "zones" of activity and control every shade of light and color in your home without ever flipping a switch. These benefits -- along with the ability to save energy and money -- are just a few reasons why consumers are rapidly adopting automated lighting and wireless or cloud-based home management systems.
While these systems aren't new, the ability to combine them with apps and the most energy-efficient lighting technology is. In fact, it's allowing homeowners to use them in ways they never thought possible. One example is readily matching your family's lifestyle with energy-saving lighting controls. You can use your smartphone or tablet to enhance home security by remotely monitoring and adjusting lighting status throughout the house while you're away. You can integrate lighting controls with motion sensors to dim or turn off lights automatically when a room is unoccupied. In some cases, you can even have lights flash when the phone or doorbell rings to speed response.
Pairing these systems with Energy Star-certified LED bulb technology will allow for even faster payback. LEDs use 75 to 80 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs which, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, will help you save about $6 per bulb or about $14 a fixture annually on your energy bill. With the addition of lighting controls, you can save even more.
Some LED bulb solutions may look like familiar light bulbs, and some may not. To help you "bulb up" on selecting the right LED light for each area of your home, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) offers all the resources you need. On its website, you'll find instructions on how to read the Lighting Facts label on LED packaging, charts on warm and cool lighting, bulb shapes and a handy calculator to help you see how much you can save while setting up your specific bulb functions.
Once you get your LEDs and your automated lighting set up, you'll have plenty of time to reap the advantages -- especially considering that Energy Star-certified LEDs can last up to 49,000 hours longer than the usual 1,000 hours you get from a standard incandescent bulb. So, have fun using more futuristic apps, well into the future.
For all the ways to save and be more energy efficient with Energy Star-certified LED bulbs, go to nyserda.ny.gov/led-savings.