Green Electrical and Lighting for Bathrooms
Your green lighting design should include two types of lighting:
- Ambient lighting
- task lighting
Choose Energy-Efficient Ambient Lighting
For ambient lighting and vanity lighting, florescent tubes and bulbs are an excellent choice. A 15-watt florescent bulb will emit as much light as a 60-watt incandescent bulb yet it will last ten times as long. Many improvements have been made in florescent light technology so these lights are now available in flattering hues (or color temperature as known by the trade). Florescent lights can result in significant energy savings.
Another option for indirect, ambient lighting is LED lighting. LEDs produce as much light as incandescent lights but use 1/10 of the electricity of an incandescent bulb. The initial cost for LED lighting is higher but will save you energy and replacement bulb costs since they will last for 10 years or more.
Install LED Task Lighting
For task lighting, LEDs are highly preferred over incandescent bulbs. LEDs are now available in a variety of hues and have been designed specifically to present users in a flattering light. There are many new and exciting options on the market.
Carefully Install Recessed Lighting
If installing recessed ambient lighting, make sure the lighting fixture is sealed air-tight and is insulation compatible. AT- IC designates that the recessed lighting has been designed for direct insulation contact. Recessed lighting that is not AT-IC can be a fire hazard. Air tight installation is important to prevent heat loss through the attic.
Waterproof Lights in Wet Areas
Finally, keep in mind that lights over showers or other wet areas need a waterproof housing. Wire different lights to different switches so that you can turn on only the lights you need in the bathroom at a given time.