Quick: What kind of light bulbs are you using at your house? LEDs? CFLs? Incandescents? If they are energy-savers, are they Energy-Star certified? Do you even know?

I'll admit it, I don't have a clue. But I took a look around today and found an assortment of CFLs and LEDs that were likely installed based on what I had in the pantry at the time. Looking back at those boxes I can see that some were Energy-Star certified, while the others were not. And guess what? Those non-certified bulbs are the ones we complain about the most. The dim bulbs that leave us squinting to read, cook and pay bills.  

So I guess that makes me a pretty dim bulb, too!

What is the Energy Star certification? While any light bulb can slap the label "energy-saving" on its packaging, only those certified by the Environmental Protection Agency can carry the Energy Star label. And these bulbs are the ones that have passed the test to save energy while offering high quality lighting. Because what good is an energy-saving bulb if it leaves you in the dark?

The problem with all of these dim bulbs is that they have left a lot of people scratching their heads about the value of energy-saving bulbs to begin with. But energy-saving bulbs — good quality energy saving bulbs — can still play a major role in the fight against climate change. According to the EPA, if every household replaced just one light bulb with one that has earned the Energy Star certification, we would save enough energy to light three million homes for a whole year, and prevent greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to that of 800,000 vehicles.

To highlight the difference between good bulbs and bad, the EPA has launched a new "Dim Bulb" campaign in the hopes that it will get folks to seek out the Energy Star certification label when they buy their bulbs. Check out one of their new campaign videos:

So the moral of the story is: Don't be a dim bulb like me. Look for the Energy Star label so that you can proudly save energy — without getting left in the dark.

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