It hasn’t even been 10 years since the first consumer LED light bulbs hit the market, but in that relatively short period, LED lighting has already grown to become the gold standard in home lighting, widely considered as the best option for replacing classic incandescent light bulbs and even compact fluorescent lights (CFLs).

The reason? Superior energy efficiency. In fact, LEDs outclass any other lighting solution on the market, saving as much as 90 percent of energy compared to incandescent bulbs. It doesn’t hurt that your average LED light bulb will have an average rated lifespan of 15,000 to 25,000 hours.

These factors are usually enough for most [city] homeowners to make the switch to LED lighting. But while LEDs are indeed a great investment in any home, like any other electronic device, they still require some care and maintenance on your part to make sure you get the most out of your investment

Below are a few maintenance tips to maximize the performance and lifespan of your LED lights.

1. Control Your Lighting

While there’s no denying that LED light bulbs are remarkably energy efficient, it still helps to use your lights only when you need to, which will help extend their lifespan. Of course, you might be wondering if being careful with your LED usage defeats the point of having energy efficient lighting in the first place. But as long-lived as LEDs are, their lifespan can also be affected by wear and tear. As with any device that runs on electricity, it helps to switch off your lights whenever they’re not in use to extend their lifespan, if not to reduce your carbon footprint as much as you can.

2. Use the Right Bulbs in the Appropriate Areas

Although your standard LED light bulb is far more durable than any incandescent or CFL bulb, it still pays to use the right bulb for its recommended applications. For example, if you live in an area with notoriously brutal winters, it’s a good idea to use LEDs specifically built for outdoor applications for your home’s exterior and landscape lighting. These kinds of LED bulbs are built to withstand extreme temperatures.

3. Use a Dimmer

Many LED light bulbs are compatible with third party dimming controllers, which lower the voltage of an LED bulb, which in turn lowers its lighting output. This does two things.

First, dropping an LED bulb’s voltage improves its energy efficiency; by lower the voltage of an LED, the less electricity it uses in the process. Second, dropping the voltage improves its lifespan. This is especially true for LEDs that are overdriven, or produce too high a lumen output for too little cooling.

By following these 3 simple care and maintenance tips, you can improve the performance and lifespan of your [city] home’s LED lighting system. Follow them, and you can see to it that you’re getting the most out of your LED investment.