If you want a quick and easy way to make your home feel more updated, replace your existing over head lights with LED lights.

  • They consume less energy. In fact, they’re so energy-efficient that the Department of Energy(link is external) announced plans this past April to phase incandescent and halogen bulbs out of production and sale in the U.S. before a ban takes effect next year.
  • They cost less. After initially emerging as a pricey option, many LEDs cost about $1.50, down from $80 apiece in 2008, says Nathan Kipnis, a Chicago and Boulder, Colo.–based architect and expert on sustainability.
  • They last longer. Lauck says he used to replace a porch light monthly and now expects its LED replacement to last 10 years. Joseph A. Rey-Barreau, lighting designer and associate professor at the University of Kentucky, says LEDs typically last from 10,000 to 50,000 hours of light. For maximum longevity, he says, “don’t skimp on quality.”
  • They’re smaller. Let’s face it: Sometimes lightbulbs are a bit of an eyesore. A ceiling with recessed cans can have apertures of one inch in diameter—versus the standard five or six inches from years back—so it minimizes the look of holes in a ceiling, Rey-Barreau says. They also come in narrow, less visible “ropes” for all sorts of architectural applications, Lauck says.

One of my favorite lights to replace the old fashioned ‘boob’ lights or the ‘upside down umbrella’ ceiling lights is this super slim light from Amazon. It looks modern and uses pennies a day. They claim to last 10 years, time will tell. I usually buy them in the 4pack and do all the lights in a house.

Light installed in a recent renovation