How much do LED lights save? The numbers will astound

How much do LED lights save? The numbers will astound

how much do led lights save

How much do LED lights save?

When you consider that lighting can account for up to 25% of your electricity bill, knowing how to cut down on that one cost can make a big difference in your household budget. Imagine having a little extra money at the end of the year to do with what you please, instead of feeding the power plant.

With that in mind, let’s answer the question: How much do LED lights save?

There’s been a lot of talk in the last few years about switching one’s lighting from standard incandescent to compact fluorescent bulbs (CFL), and most recently to LED (light emitting diode) bulbs. But how much do LED lights save?

LED bulbs were originally designed for small, battery-powered items, but have since been expanded by bulb makers to cluster together up to 180 of the tiny LED bulbs on one standard sized lamp and then enclosed in a diffuser lenses and reflectors to give it a normal light bulb appearance.

One of the best things about LED light bulbs is that they last up to 10 times as long as CFLs and many more times longer than standard incandescent bulbs. They are also more durable, since they don’t have a filament, so they withstand more jarring or bumping. They also remain cooler than the other kinds of bulbs.

In terms of energy efficiency, this is where the LED bulbs shine, so to speak. They use from 1/3 to 1/30 the energy of incandescent or CFLs.

How much do LED lights save?

In a head-to-head comparison of LEDs, CFLs, and incandescent bulbs, the numbers are astounding. The up front costs of LED bulbs will scare some people into just sticking to their energy-guzzling incandescent bulbs, but in the long run, the numbers are staggering.

A 60-watt LED bulb will currently set you back about $35. The prices will likely come down significantly in the next few years as demand increases and technology improves.

But the first consideration is that this light bulb will last up 42 times longer than an incandescent, so that $1.25 light bulb will cost more than $50 in replacement costs in the long run. A CFL bulb that costs $4 will add up to $20 spent on replacements to equal the life span of the LED bulb.

The differences in money spent on the actual electricity is even wider: Over the 50,000-hour life of an LED bulb, the electricity cost will be only $50, while the CFL will cost $70 and the incandescent will cost $300 to run.

So the total costs over the lifetime of a 50,000-hour LED bulb, 5 CFL bulbs that have a lifespan of 10,000 hours each, and 42 incandescent bulbs with an estimated lifespan of 1,200 hours are:

                        Purchase price             Electricity costs         Total cost for 50k hours

LED                        $35.95                         $50                             $85.95

CFL                        $3.95 (x5)                    $70                             $89.75

Incandescent        $1.25 (x42)                  $300                           $352.50

While a savings of $4 isn’t much compared to a CFL, the added factors of durability, lifespan, cool operating temperature, and convenience make it worth the added up front costs.

In the long run, however, the savings will be huge. Now that you know the answer to how much do LED lights save, if you were willing to bite the bullet and replace all of your bulbs today, you wouldn’t be buying any new light bulbs for many years and your electric bill would drop significantly right away.

*Where you can buy LED light bulbs online and get cash back:,, and www.elightbulbs

  • Mike Sheehan

    This was very helpful. I didn’t realize the huge savings over time.

  • mike zacher

    Just read the article on how much do led lights save.. My wife and I have been talking about the cost of the new bulbs vs the savings… I agree with the article.. I know it costs more up front and it will reduce your electric bill… I may be slowly changing the bulbs through out the house over several.. will reduce my electric bill

  • Barbara Baxter Friedman

    Thanks for the very informative article! I have not seen the facts on the savings until now. Makes a lot of sense and helps justify the big discrepancy in the upfront costs.

  • John Snider

    Great article and very surprising numbers.

  • robb

    Yes led lights are really the way to go. I changed all the down lighting in my hall and kitchen and not only is the consumption of electicity much less, the quality of light is really great too. I got fed up with the poor light quality of the CFL lamps so decided to make the change to LED…. best thing I ever did….. well from a lighting point of view anyway!

  • Kim Riley

    some great advice. I’m going through my house now to change out things so that we’re more energy efficient. Light bulbs is one!

  • Steve Ficker

    I have all CFL light currently in my home. The interesting thing about this article is how LED are more durable. Did not consider that when balancing the cost of LED. I am going to need to buy a few LED light and see how they are.

  • Troy Rudd

    I have a bulb out right now… One of those that you hate to change because it requires a ladder and some extreme gymnastic skills to reach it. Looks like I’d be much better off replacing it with LED. Thanks!

  • Jolanda Junge

    I’m glad to see the comparison between the different kinds of bulbs. It has been really difficult to spend what seems like extra money on the newer bulbs particularly when the curly ones are unattractive and slow to fully light up. And I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around that a LED will actually last as long as they say – 50,000 hours – that’s 5.75 years if the bulb is on 24/7. So in real use time a bulb could last 15+/- years. Can you imagine only having to replace bulbs just a few times in your lifetime?

    But I’m all about saving energy. And we all have to do our part.

    When I replace a bulb I write the date on the base. My own little check and balance to see how long these bulbs really do last. I know – I’ll get over it….

    And I feel bad for Thomas Edison …

  • Laura Durant

    For the past few months, I have been changing the light-bulbs in my house and the LED light-bulbs are just great!! They do cost more up front but worth it overall.

  • Arild Folgerø

    Hmmm I did not know this, thanks for the great info!

  • Laurie

    I’m not opposed to saving money, of course. I don’t like the way LED lights look…at least the way Christmas lights look anyway. I’m hoping the bulbs mentioned here look more natural than those, but I’ll definitely consider checking into them due to the cost savings. Thanks for the insightful article!

  • Susan

    We’ve been using these for years and they’ve gotten MUCH better, a softer, more natural light.

  • Steven L. Rhyner

    I love LED’s! Initial cost is a little high but they last and last!