Kiss your old incandescent one goodbye. A new lightbulb rule is in effect.

Photo (c) Savusia Konstantin - Getty Images

New energy standards coming for water heaters, too

We’re a little late to the party, but the U.S. has finally gotten around to banning the incandescent light bulb and putting an end to Thomas Edison turning over in his coffin for the umpteenth time.

Over the course of the last 18 years, countries around the world have enacted legislation to phase out incandescent light bulbs in favor of more environmentally friendly and energy-efficient alternatives such as LED lights, which use 75% less energy and are said to last up to 25 times longer than incandescents.

It’s not like the Department of Energy (DOE) didn’t try to save the light bulb. It did all it could to find a way to increase the efficiency of incandescent lamps, but it found that doing so could cost consumers more than 300% compared to the price of today’s alternative lights. 

Yes, LED light bulbs cost more – as much as 3x the price of an incandescent – however, LED light bulbs last longer and consume less energy which could save consumers who use them an estimated $100 per year. As an example, a string of LED bulbs around the Christmas tree could still be in use 40 holiday seasons from now.

By the way, halogen bulbs and compact fluorescent lights have also been banned.

The lightbulb isn’t the only thing that’s getting improved

The Energy Department is also establishing new efficiency standards for three other consumer goods: water heaters, pool pump motors, and boilers, which it claims will result in significant energy efficiency gains and cost savings. DOE expects that when the new performance standard for the pool pump motors and boilers begins in 2026, it will save American consumers approximately $926 million per year on their utility bills. 

“Today’s announcement reinforces President Biden’s efforts to update and strengthen outdated energy efficiency standards that cut costs for working families and businesses while slashing greenhouse gas emissions,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. 

“This Administration remains laser-focused on promoting innovation that saves Americans money, and we’ll continue to work with our industry partners to improve consumers’ options and increase the reliability and performance of household appliances and critical commercial and industrial products.” 

The DOE’s got one more advancement, too. It recently launched the Energy Savings Hub—an online one-stop shop for consumers to access savings tools President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is promoting to significantly cut utility bills.

And it’s not just for homeowners, either. The new guide also offers tips to renters on how they can save money within their own apartments. For information on upgrading to a cleaner and more environmentally friendly system – and save some money – visit www.Energy.gov/Save

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