The True Cost of Leaving the Lights On

It's wasteful and a little lazy, we all know that- but we're all guilty of leaving the lights on every now and again. Perhaps because you believe it will keep your home safe when you're out for the night, or maybe you just can't be bothered to run upstairs and turn the light off that accidentally got left on. Either way, a recent study shows that leaving the lights on costs Britain £4.4 billion every year. Just one night of this wastage equates to fifteen flights around the world, and that really is something to think about. The study, conducted by Utility Design, looked specifically at home lighting. And it just goes to show that we should be extra careful when choosing lamps and lights for our homes. 

Shining a Light on Relationships 
The effects can be felt in more than just our bank balances, as the research found that leaving the lights on was the main reason that couples argue at home. This was closely followed by not doing the dishes and then by leaving clothes or shoes on the floor – both highly contentious issues in any household. 

The Damage Our Homes Could be Causing 
Looking at the bigger picture, Britain is one of the world’s top offenders when it comes to carbon dioxide emissions – and all those lights being left on aren’t helping. The research from Utility Design discovered that an estimated 4.7 million people in the UK admitted to leaving a light on when going to bed. Based on the average of eight hours of slumber, this totals £3,619,000 being spent per night in the UK. The research also found that 10% of us regularly leave our lights on simply when leaving a room. This may mean that there is an additional £15 million of energy being wasted each day across the UK, creating an incredible 37,440,000 kg of carbon dioxide emissions. It’s enough to get you searching for something to smile about, just to take your mind off the implications. Or at least to make you seriously consider the lighting choices you have made in your home. 

Taking Another Look at Lighting 
So, what can we do? Well, for one thing, it is always worth double-checking the lights when going to bed. It can also be a good idea to get into the habit of switching off a light as soon as you stop using it. This way you will not only save electricity but possibly reduce any cause your partner or other loved ones may have for being annoyed. One of the best ways to keep lighting in mind is to invest in good quality lights and lamps, rather than simply cluttering your rooms with cheaper devices. You will have fewer lamps to switch off and possibly a more pleasing ambience in your home. So, it’s a win-win situation for you and the planet.