LED Lights in My Home?

An interesting question I’ve been getting lately from energy-conscious homeowners is, “Does it make sense to replace my existing lights with lower energy LED lights?” We are seeing that a lot of commercial businesses are replacing their lighting system with LED lights because they use a fraction of the electricity. So, it stands to reason some of us homeowners might want to explore the same benefit. In fact, not only do LED lights use much less electricity to illuminate, they also have a significantly longer life than traditional lighting.

However, there is one very significant difference that must be considered in measuring the value of LED lighting in the home, versus a commercial/retail building. This difference is the length of time the lights are used.

A lot of commercial buildings leave their lights on between 12 to 16 hours a day on average. This can be an office building, restaurant, car dealership, or similar. When you consider how much energy these commercial establishments can save every month, the payback on exchanging into these “more expensive” LED lights may typically be between 18 to 24 months. Such a rapid payback makes the decision to convert over to LED an easy one for many business owners.

Now, if you look at the average residential home where, at least one person – and often two people – works during the day away from home, these lights might only be on three to five hours in an average day. And while the energy savings for LEDs in the home can be significant, the payback may run into the 8 to 10 year period.

So, if the payback for LED lighting in the home is so long, is the answer to never replace my existing bulbs with LEDs? A lighting expert says that in his home, when one older bulb burns out, he will replace the single bulb with an LED, or he might replace an entire section – like a kitchen or bathroom – at one time. Thus, the up-front expense is manageable, and you can slowly start to recognize a savings on your monthly electric bill. One other consideration is that LED lighting may not be compatible with some dimming switches, so you may want to test one bulb first if you are using a dimmer.

If you have questions about LED lighting, give me a call or send me an email. I can connect you with a lighting expert in your area.


Al Rex

Realtor • CalBRE# 01377312
7030 Avenida Encinas, Suite 100, Carlsbad, CA 92011

Al Rex has been a top selling realtor in Carlsbad for the past 14 years, where he and his family reside. Visit his website at to get updated MLS information, or to find a floor plan for your own home.