Cheaper, Easier CFL Downlighting

May/June 2006
A version of this article appears in the May/June 2006 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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May 01, 2006
        The use of downlights in the residential market is increasing, yet energy-efficient CFL downlights have not been widely accepted or adopted by residential builders and homeowners. That’s because residential CFL downlights are costly, difficult to install, and not widely available. In addition, existing residential products are not as efficient or reliable as their commercial-market cousins. As a result, builders often install inefficient incandescent lights, increasing electricity bills for consumers and adding to peak demand on electric utilities.         A low-cost, high-performance downlighting system has been developed for residential kitchens. Kitchen lighting is the largest user of lighting energy in California homes; it accounts for one-fourth of the operating cost of residential lighting. The Kitchen Lighting System (KLS), developed at the California Lighting Technology Center (CLTC) with funding from the California Energy Commission’s Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) program, features two CFLs that can be controlled from a single ballast, uses fixtures that emit more than 50 lumens per watt, and costs less than half as much to install as current commercialgrade products.The KLS is now offered as a product by Lithonia Lighting under the name ...

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