A free app that won the EPA's Apps for the Environment contest lets you calculate the energy and cost savings you'd see by swapping out your light bulbs for more efficient versions. The EPA estimates that using the app can help homeowners cut their electricity bill by $120 a year and cut their CO2 emissions by 1,360 lbs a year.
The Light Bulb Finder app lets you choose the type of fixture and bulb that you want to replace and then recommends a good replacement based on fit, appearance and quality. The app then shows users a picture of the bulb, its specifications and the savings users will see in energy, costs and emissions based on the user's location if they make the switch. To make it easy as possible, the app also directs users to where they can buy the bulbs either online or at local retailers.
As a home owner, I know that walking into a large home improvement store and trying to pick out efficient bulbs from the shelves can feel a little overwhelming, especially when you're not sure about fixture fit and the quality of light you'll be getting. This app is great because it takes the guessing out of making the switch to more efficient bulbs and as the incandescent bulbs start disappearing from shelves starting as the new light bulb standards go into effect, easy access to this information will become important.
The app is available for iOS devices and Android-based smartphones.