Drift Off to Sleep with Smart LED Lighting
What do a warm bath, a good book, and a smart LED bulb all have in common? They all prepare your body for a restful night’s sleep. The Drift Light by Saffron promises to help you fall asleep naturally by casting warmer lighting and mimicking the setting sun.
Some screw-in LED bulbs can help you save on your monthly utility bills, but they could also rob you of a good night's sleep. The energy-saving bulbs emit a blue hue that suppresses melatonin production, a hormone that promotes sleep and activates only when it's dark. Sleep or lack thereof affects mood, productivity, and health.
The Drift Light emits less blue light than traditional LED bulbs, producing instead a warm incandescent-like light. This allows users to enjoy the beauty of incandescent lighting and the energy savings of LED lighting without compromising their sleep.
The Drift Light features an innovative auto-dimming function that sets it apart from other smart LED bulbs. The bulb slowly dims over a period of 37 minutes, the average time of a sunset, gradually transitioning a room from light to dark. The idea behind the faux sunset is to encourage relaxation and increase melatonin in preparation for sleep.
Greenhouse Gases 101: 5 Easy Prevention Tips
Earth is estimated to be roughly 4.5 billion years old. Our atmosphere has been continually evolving ever since. An extraordinary balance of elements come together allowing life to form and thrive on this planet. It’s our legacy to protect this unique planet for future generations by reducing greenhouse gases. Learn how using these efficient lighting, fan, cutting excess, driving and gardening tips can reduce this generation's carbon footprint.
What is the greenhouse effect?
A very basic definition of the greenhouse effect is when greenhouse gases form a protective layer around the Earth that captures some of the heat rays from the sun, which keeps Earth from being a frozen planet and allows for organisms to grow.
The theory of global warming is that the more greenhouse gases we release into the air the thicker the protective layer grows, capturing more heat from the sun, ergo, Earth gets continuously warmer. Many worry Earth may one day become too warm to sustain life.
10 Spring Cleaning Tips for Summer Savings
Spring is a time of growth and renewal for many plants and animals. It’s also the ideal time to prep your home for rising summer cooling and lighting costs. Use these easy-to-follow spring cleaning, organizing, and decorating tips for a cost-saving summer.
Getting your home in shape for summer is no small undertaking whether you live in a studio apartment or a sprawling five-bedroom house, and it’s easy to be overwhelmed if you don’t know where to start. Make a plan and stick to it. Use a trusted pen and paper list or a cleaning app to help you stay on task and motivated (there's something very rewarding about checking something off a to-do list).
First, make a list of all the rooms in your home including outdoor spaces. Next, list the tasks you want to accomplish. Then, list the supplies and tools necessary to complete these tasks. Stock up on supplies such as all-purpose cleaner, wood cleaner, microfiber cloths, and scrub brushes. Pick up an extendable duster or a ladder for hard-to-reach spots. Use a bucket or a carryall apron to stow supplies so everything you need is within hand’s reach.
Spring cleaning takes time because you’re dusting, scrubbing, and rearranging spaces that are not part of your weekly housework routine. Allow yourself several days or even a week to complete the task on your list. Split large tasks into small chunks to make progress and avoid burning out. Focus on one room at a time, and don’t be afraid to ask friends and family for assistance with difficult tasks.
Why Is Security Lighting Important?
Outdoor lighting adds beauty and dimension to a home. Lighting is also an integral part of an effective home security system. Outdoor security lighting discourages would-be intruders from targeting your home by increasing the risk of being caught. The best lighting design allows physical detection and facial recognition, minimizes hiding spots, and increases your sense of safety.
You don't have to light your home like a Christmas tree to feel safe. Over-illumination can draw unwanted attention to valuable items in your home or business. Here are some simple tips to help you identify potential safety and security risks, select the best security lights, and determine their placement to ensure your safety and security.
See which type of security lights work best for your home.
Andrew Coleman, a lighting designer for McKay Landscape Lighting in Omaha, NE, reveals the purpose of residential outdoor lighting is threefold. First, it must be aesthetically pleasing to the homeowners. Second, it must help the residents safely navigate the landscape and perimeter of the home, and allow them to identify obstructions and potential hazards such as a change in elevation. Third, it must provide security by discouraging trespassers. A well-lit home is less likely to be broken into, he says.
A 2007 Washington Post article found burglars search for homes that appear to be unoccupied. Lighting adds an element of surprise and establishes an occupancy pattern that deters intruders from targeting a home in the first place. Residents that use outdoor lighting as part of their security plan significantly decrease their changes of being burglarized.
The Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) further explains that good security lighting anticipates potential threats and predators, and increases the means necessary to commit a crime, discouraging would-be criminals from breaking into a home. This security approach is known as target hardening. In other words, the longer it takes to plan and execute a break in, the less likely criminals are to target that home. According to the IES, home security lighting must have the following aims:
- Provide a clear view of the area; including people and objects such as fences, walls and barriers
- Allow facial recognition at a minimum distance of 30 feet
- Make tasks such as finding your keys, retrieving the mail, or walking the dog easier and safer
- Help people avoid criminal threats and/or defend themselves when a threat is perceived
- Enhance your sense of safety when spending time outdoors
How To: Energy Efficient Heating and Cooling
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) averages most families spend roughly $1,900 a year on electricity. The bulk of that comes directly from the heating and cooling of your home. Adjusting a handful of factors will save your wallet and the environment big time. We will break these energy efficient heating and cooling tips into winter, summer and anytime categories. At the end of this article we will highlight why energy efficient heating and cooling is so important to our environment.
Keeping it Efficiently Cool in Summer
If you’re trying to beat the summer heat without beating up your electric bill or the environment, we have a great list of summer energy efficient cooling tips for you. We have compiled them in order ranging from easy-peasy to serious-lifting.
*Click the image to open a larger version.
- Lower your AC. A good rule of thumb when using your AC in the summer is to try to keep it at 78 degrees when you are home and 85 degrees when you leave your home. Do not turn the unit completely off unless you’re leaving for more than 24 hours. You will be saving one to three percent of your energy bill for every degree higher you set it. Consider using this tactic with energy saving ceiling fans to help keep you cool.
Let a draft flow. One main reason your home begins to heat up is the lack of air circulation. Opening the windows and doors in the early mornings or evenings, when the temperature is still low outside, will allow cool air to move through, letting your home cool itself naturally before the summer heat kicks in. Pair this technique with ceiling fans, desk fans or floor fans and you will not even need your AC on during the first part of the day.