DC Sustainable Energy Utility
Your Guide to Green

Energy Efficient Lighting 

For high-quality products with the greatest energy savings, choose bulbs that have earned the ENERGY STAR®.

The DCSEU is partnering with local retailers throughout the District to offer discount energy-efficient CFLs for as low as $.99, and LEDs for as low as $4.99, making it easy and affordable to choose the bulb that meets your needs.

Energy Details

Comparison of light bulbs you would use in a table lamp with 1100 Lumens (a 75 Watt equivalent)

Bulb Type

Yearly Cost*

Ten Year Cost*













DCSEU Is Your Guiding Light

There’s an abundance of energy efficient choices in the lighting aisle these days. Whether you choose based on the color temperature of the light, the type of fixture, or brightness, you can use DCSEU's Lighting Guide to help you find the right bulb for every fixture in your home.

CFLs and LEDs can help lighten your electric bills

  • ENERGY STAR-qualified CFLs use about 75% less energy, and ENERGY STAR qualified LEDs use about 90% less energy than incandescent bulbs.
  • You can save more than $65-$100 per year in energy costs just by replacing the bulbs in your home's five most frequently-used light fixtures with ENERGY STAR models.
  • ENERGY STAR-qualified lighting also produces less heat when operating, so it can help you save on air conditioning costs during the hot months in the District.

Lumen Output: Incandescent light bulbs versus CFLs and LEDs

With traditional incandescent bulbs, we’re used to looking at the wattage of a bulb to determine how bright it would be. But wattage is really a measure of energy used, not brightness.

When replacing a traditional incandescent bulb with a CFL or LED, look for "brightness" on the Energy Facts label, listed in lumens. The higher the lumens, the brighter the bulb.

Bulb Comparison Chart

Lumens (Brightness)

Incandescent Watts

CFL Watts

LED Watts

















Top 5 things to know about CFLs and LEDs

  1. ENERGY STAR qualified LED bulbs can have a useful life of 25,000 hours or more, 25 times longer than incandescent light bulbs and 2.5 times longer than CFLs.
    An ENERGY STAR qualified LED will last on average 25 years. Much longer than other bulbs.
  2. CFLs are very versatile and can fit a wide range of fixtures – just about anywhere you used to use a traditional incandescent bulb. 
  3. LEDs offer crisp, natural-looking light, perfect for reading areas, kitchens, and anywhere that light quality is especially important.
  4. CFLs are more widely available at retail outlets and are still more affordable than LEDs.
  5. LED bulbs use both light and energy more efficiently by producing light only where it is needed.

The facts about energy efficient lighting


ENERGY STAR LEDs are your best bet. Look for the ENERGY STAR® label, awarded to select LED products that meet strict efficiency, quality, and lifetime criteria. While LEDs are already beginning to surpass the quality and efficiency of existing lighting technologies, testing by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has shown wide variability in performance of LED products. Only well-designed products used in the proper applications will provide the energy savings, lighting quality, and long-life benefits of LEDs.


CFLs have come a long way. Compact fluorescent lighting has not always been the best solution for many homeowners, despite the potential for high energy savings. Many early buyers were dissatisfied with things like flickering, humming, and the harsh quality of light.

CFL technology has come a long way. The CFLs you find on the shelf today:

  • provide high-quality light in a range of colors that rival the array of incandescent options;
  • no longer flicker or hum;
  • come in an assortment of shapes to suit nearly every lighting need. There are even covered versions for those who prefer the traditional look of incandescent bulbs; 
  • and last as long as 10 years.

How to recycle and dispose of energy efficient light bulbs


Non-working bulbs

Recycle it!

CFL bulbs contain a small amount of mercury, which is essential in conducting electricity in CFL bulbs. Mercury can be hazardous to the environment, so it is important to recycle your used CFL bulbs rather than throw them away.

Home Depot, Ace Hardware and True Value Hardware will recycle used CFL bulbs. You can also contact your local bulb retailer to find out if they recycle bulbs as well.


Dispose of properly.

If a CFL bulb breaks, it can release some of its mercury as vapor. Therefore, you must follow specific cleanup steps to avoid coming into contact with the mercury, the DCSEU recommends following the EPA guidelines for cleanup of broken CFLs.

You can dispose broken CFLs at Fort Totten Transfer Station.


Recycle it!

If CFLs and the need for proper disposal is an issue for you, LEDs may be a great lighting choice. More than 95% of an LED bulb is recyclable; call your local waste management company for information on collecting and recycling LEDs.

Get Started:

The DCSEU is working with local retailers to make sure that only top quality ENERGY STAR bulbs qualify for on-the-shelf discounted pricing. Whether you like warm light, cool light, or you prefer the bulb with the biggest bang for your buck, try our tool to help you find light bulbs for your home. Find the bulb you want with the interactive Lighting Guide.


Look for reduced prices on CFLs & LEDs available at participating retailers.

Limit: 12 bulbs per DC residential electric utility account.

Find a Store

https://www.1000bulbs.com/energy-efficiency-programs/DCSEU Map It
2140 Merritt Drive
Garland, TX 75041
(972) 764-5934

Costco Map It
2441 Market Street NE
Washington, DC 20018

Martin's Foodtown Map It
2765 MLK Jr. Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20032
(202) 561-2233

King's Discount Map It
2747 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave., SE
Washington, DC 20032
(202) 562-3100

Giant Food Store #384 Map It
1535 Alabama Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20032
(202) 610-6464

Safeway - Alabama Ave Map It
2845 Alabama Ave SE
Washington, DC 20020
(202) 575-7525

Safeway - Waterfront Map It
1100 4th Street SW
Washington, DC 20024
(202) 554-9155

Harris Teeter - Potomac Ave SE Map It
1350 Potomac Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20003
(202) 543-1040

Yes! Organic Market - Capitol Hill Map It
410 8th Street SE
Washington, DC 20003
(202) 546-4325

TechniArt.com Map It
Washington, DC 20003

Safeway - Capitol Hill Map It
415 14th Street SE
Washington, DC 20003

Bed Bath and Beyond - Gallery Place Chinatown Map It
709 7th Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 628-0002

Walmart - H Street Map It
99 H Street NW
Washington, DC 20001

Safeway - Mount Vernon Map It
490 L Street NW
Washington, DC 20001

Ace Hardware - 5th Street Map It
1055 5th Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 682-4570

Giant Food #2381 H Street Map It
300 H Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
(202) 548-5100

Safeway - Palisades Map It
4865 MacArthur Blvd NW
Washington, DC 20007

Safeway - East Riverside Map It
322 40th Street NE
Washington, DC 20019

Safeway - Georgetown Map It
1855 Wisconsin Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20007

Dollar Tree - Hechinger Mall Map It
1548 Benning Road NE
Washington, DC 20002

Safeway - H St Corridor Map It
1601 Maryland Ave NE
Washington, DC 20002

Harris Teeter - Northeast Map It
1201 1st Street NE
Washington, DC 20002

Giant Food #9562 O Street Market Map It
1414 8th Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 238-0180

Safeway - Dupont Map It
1701 Corcoran Street NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 667-6825

Ace Hardware - Glover Park Map It
2233 Wisconsin Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 333-6378

Ace Hardware - Logan 1734 Map It
1734 14th St. NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 265-8900

Yes! Organic Market - 14th Street NW Map It
2123 14th Street NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 232-6603

Windows Cafe and Market Map It
101 Rhode Island Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 462-6585

Yes! Organic Market - Adams Morgan Map It
1825 Columbia Road NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 462-2069

Harris Teeter - Kalorama Road Map It
1631 Kalorama Road NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 986-1415

Ace - Woodley Park Map It
2616 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008

Safeway - Adams Morgan Map It
1747 Columbia Road NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 667-0774

Giant Food #375 Map It
1050 Brentwood Road NE
Washington, DC 20018
(202) 281-3900

Howard Mini Store Map It
2626 Georgia Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20001
(202) 797-9777

Big Lots Map It
524 Rhode Island Avenue NE
Washington, DC 20002
(202) 635-6390

Home Depot - Rhode Island Avenue Map It
901 Rhode Island Ave NE
Washington, DC 20018
(202) 526-8760

Target- Columbia Heights Map It
3100 14th St NW #201
Washington, DC 20010

Best World (Bestway) Supermarket Map It
3178 Mount Pleasant Street NW
Washington, DC 20010
(202) 265-3768

Old School Hardware Map It
3219 Mount Pleasant Street NW
Washington, DC 20010
(202) 462-1431

Brookville Super Market Map It
3427 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 244-9114

Giant Food #378 Map It
1345 Park Road NW
Washington, DC 20010
(202) 777-1077

Safeway - Georgia Avenue Map It
3830 Georgia Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20011
(202) 882-1140

Ace Hardware - Tenleytown Map It
4500 Wisconsin Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016
(202) 364-1902

Ace Hardware - Annie's Map It
1240 Upshur Street NW
Washington, DC 20011
(202) 726-2658

Yes! Organic Market - Petworth Map It
4100 Georgia Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20011
(202) 291-5790

Safeway - Tenleytown Map It
4203 Davenport St. NW
Washington, DC 20016

Yes! Organic Market - Brookland Map It
3809 12th Street NE
Washington, DC 20017
(202) 832-7715

M & S Liquor and Market Map It
213 Upshur St NW
Washington, DC 20011
(202) 829-7350

Rodman's Map It
5100 Wisconsin Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016
(202) 363-3466

Dollar Tree - Avondale Shops Map It
1919 Michigan Ave NE
Washington, DC 20018
(202) 269-1465

Safeway - Chevy Chase Map It
5545 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20015

Walmart - Georgia Ave Map It
5929 Georgia Ave NW
Washington, DC 20011

Safeway - Piney Branch Map It
6500 Piney Branch Road NW
Washington, DC 20012
(202) 723-5644

Giant Food #383 Map It
4303 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 364-8250

Home Energy Walk-Through

Discover ways to save energy in your home.

DC Saves Energy

See how the DCSEU is helping residents save money and energy.

How to Buy a Bulb

A guide to efficient lighting for your home.

DC Sustainable Energy Utility
80 M Street SE, Suite 310, Washington, DC 20003 E info@dcseu.com
P 202-479-2222 F 202-450-1552 Toll-Free: 855-MY-DCSEU (855-693-2738)
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