light bulb

Welcome to the Ailuna switch the lights off dare

We’re so happy you’ve decided to try to reduce your energy use by switching your lights off!

The Ailuna team will never leave you in the dark (see what we did there?) when it comes to support and encouragement. So here are some stats, tips and tricks to help you on your way to success with this dare.

Table of Contents

Some lighting facts

  • According to Our World In Data, over 90% of the world’s energy in 2018 came from fossil fuels.
  • Lighting makes up 15% of the average household’s annual electricity costs.
  • LED bulbs use 90% less energy than halogen bulbs.
  • In one year, a single wind turbine can produce enough electricity to make 230 million cups of tea!

 

Green energy, inspired by nature

Here’s something cool. Apparently fireflies inspired the invention of the LED bulb. If you want to find out how, have a watch of this video.

Why switch the lights off?

There are several very good reasons to try to switch your lights off and use more energy-efficient bulbs:

  • Lower energy use. Less energy means less of a carbon footprint.
  • It also means you save money! A typical household could save £15 per year by simply switching the lights off as you leave the room. This doesn’t sound like much, but it all adds up! This saving is even greater if you combine switching lights off with using energy-efficient bulbs.
  • Outside lights can negatively affect nocturnal animals and migrating birds so switching them off helps wildlife too!
  • LED (Light Emitting Diode) or CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lamp) bulbs last much longer. For more information, have a read of this article on why you should swap to LED lighting and this page from Which on CFL bulbs.

Tips and ideas

Switching to energy-efficient bulbs is a great start, but what else can we do to help us use our lights less and remember to switch them off?

Minimise the need for lights in your home

A great way to reduce the need for artificial lighting in your home is to make the most of the natural light that streams through your window. You can make a room feel brighter by hanging a large mirror opposite the window. It will reflect the light and instantly brighten up the room.

Circular mirror on a white wall with a plant reflected in it

A lot of us don’t tend to let all the light we possibly can into our homes. So open shutters fully rather than just tilting the slats open, pull blinds right up as far as they will go and, in the words of Elbow, “throw those curtains wide”.

Other ways to brighten up a room include:

  • Painting walls in white or light colours.
  • When buying new furniture, opt for lighter-coloured wood or other light coloured materials.
  • Even having less stuff in your home can help with making it feel brighter and more airy. If you’re feeling brave, remove a lamp or two – if they’re not there you can’t turn them on or forget to turn them off!
  • Use light-coloured lampshades – dark shades absorb some of the light from your bulb rather than reflecting it into the room. 
  • For reading, or other times when a more concentrated light is needed, choose shades with a reflective inside to focus the light exactly where you need it. 
  • Try candles! Obviously this is not always practical (or safe if you have pets or small children). But even lighting a few candles when you’re in the bath instead of turning the light on can help – and it’ll probably make your bath more relaxing too!

 

What else can you do?

This is a great dare to get family or housemates involved with as there’s always someone in the house that forgets to switch out (and usually someone who delights in telling everyone to switch them off!).

Or go one further and get your pets involved (although we’d suggest avoiding Pablo the dog’s switch-licking approach as we all know slobber and electricity don’t mix!)

Minnie adopting a conventional switching-off approach...
Pablo the dog licking a light switch to turn the lights out
....be careful Pablo!

Switching to a green energy provider – one that uses renewables rather than fossil fuels is a fantastic step in reducing your carbon footprint. A lot of these providers re-invest their profits into generating even more green energy so you’re helping the green energy market to grow, too! The Big Clean Switch website is a fantastic place to start as it only compares energy tariffs from green providers. 

Energy-saving lighting products

If you need a helping hand and like a gadget, check out some of our product ideas to help break down some barriers you might have.

Let’s go!

Now you’ve read through our tips, you’re ready to get cracking with the dare! Don’t forget, the Ailuna team is always there to help if you have any questions or need more guidance. Or you could try chatting with some like-minded folks in the Ailuna community for first-hand experience and motivation!

Good luck, we can’t wait to see you succeed!