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Lighting is one of the major electricity consumers in a typical home. By using light more efficiently, you can usually get by with lower wattage bulbs. Keep in mind that bulb wattage refers to the amount of electricity that a bulb uses, not the amount of light that it produces. Higher wattage bulbs usually produce more light, but not always.
When reading or using task lighting, make sure that the light is over your head or behind you to one side. It is important that you cannot see the bright bulb, even from the corner of your eye. If you can see the glare from the bulb at all, it will cause your pupil to close. This will reduce the amount of usable light that gets into your eye and you will have to use higher wattage, brighter bulbs. You will be surprised how little light you really need when your eyes are shielded from the direct glare.
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