With Manitoba Hydro rates set to go up, it’s a good idea to make your home more energy efficient.
For some, this means swapping out all your light bulbs for high efficiency CFLs. Before you make that switch, consider putting on a dimmer instead. If you already have CFLs, you might want to switch them for regular bulbs with a dimmer switch.
Energy. A regular bulb that is dimmed to low power can use less energy than a CFL bulb.
Health. CFLs are not recommended in the bedroom, because they have been correlated with headaches, health concerns, and in extreme cases, cancer. In my opinion, that means that they shouldn’t be in other rooms either. Regular light bulbs have not been known to pose any health risks that I’m aware of.
Ambience. Proper lighting can change the look and feel of a room. With a dimmer, you can go from working-in-the-kitchen-bright to evening-appetizers-glow with the slide of a switch. It can work wonders on a bathroom, whether you want a soft light glowing overnight when guests are staying, or a candlelight effect during a party. Dimmed lighting is also much more flattering on skin than overhead fluorescents.
The good news? It’s easy and inexpensive to do! All you need to do is head to your nearest hardware store and pick up a dimmer kit, which includes everything you need except the screwdriver. It will set you back between $ 5-$ 20. Just follow my 5 easy steps and you can have better lighting in an hour!
If you have high efficiency CFL lights, the first step is to replace them with regular light bulbs. The CFL’s won’t dim, and even if they did the light would not look attractive. Having a regular bulb dimmed can save more energy than a CFL light!
5 EASY STEPS
1. Turn off power to the area. This will save you from a nasty shock! This is done at the fuse panel or main source of power.
2. Take off the switch cover by removing the top and bottom screws
3. Unscrew the top and bottom screws to take the switch out of the wall and expose the wires.
4. Disconnect the switch from the wires. Make sure the wires do not touch!
Connect the new dimmer switch by twisting together to connect the wires; black to black, white to white green to green.
Use the yellow wire insulators, like the ones in the picture below (they come with the dimmer kit), to secure the black and white wire tips; you will end up screwing them in.
The green wire is your grounding wire in most cases, which you attach to the screw inside the wall.
5. Put screws back in and put the switch cover back on.
Enjoy your upgraded lighting!
A nice touch for every room!