Wasted Days and Wasted Lights

Have you ever noticed how many people forget to turn their porch lights off during the day?  On recent tour of my neighborhood in Bakersfield, I counted 11 homes with the exterior lighting competing with the noon sun. You don’t have to be an eco freak to get this concept.  Turn your porch lights off when the sun is shining!  

My grandfather Stan used to follow my brother and I around his house yelling, “Why are these lights on? These cost money!”  Well, needless to say, I learned that lesson early on in life and it drives me nuts to see people throwing money and resources down the toilet. If it’s yellow let it mellow!  Sorry I got side tracked.  The only redeeming factor in this energy wasting fiasco is that 8 out the 11 homes with their lights left on had CFL’s.  But, come on! Let’s do the math.  For arguments sake we will assume that the CFLs are 13 watt bulbs, and the incandescents are 40 watt bulbs. Lets also say each house has 2 lights on. (Click Read More to Continue)


40w Incandescent  x 2
24 hrs will use 1.920 KW = $.36
7 days will use 13.440 KW  = $2.55
1 month will use 57.600 KW = $10.94
1 year will use 691.200 KW = $131.32

13w Compact Flourescent x 2
24 hrs will use .624 KW = $.04
7 days will use 4.368 KW = $.83
1 month will use 18.720 KW = $3.56
1 year will use 224.640 KW = $42.68

1 KW @ $.19 average

So, these are the numbers for just two lamps left on, but, like cockroaches, for every one you see there are many more you don’t. Who knows how many lights are left on in the house! Energy conservation is not only good for our environment, but also our pocket books.  Even though the CFL’s use about a third of the energy of an incandescent lamp, it wouldn’t cost my neighbors nearly as much if they would turn off their lights during the day. If their too lazy to do that, then a solution would be to buy a fixture with a photocell.  A photocell is basically a switch that is activated by the sun (daylight-off / night-on). It’s just that simple.  So please, do yourselves a favor and go turn off that light, It’s costing YOU money.

Check back soon for my next articles- where to recycle your CFL’S here in Bakersfield and constructing a homemade solar hot water system.  Solar heated water-DUH!

-Tim  Douhan
Greener Bakersfield Contributor


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