In a country like France, electricity consumption devoted to domestic lighting represents nearly a fifth of the total energy consumption of a building. The use of electric lighting is influenced by several factors such as the building’s structural characteristics, the activities of its occupants, the lighting equipments, and the level of natural light. Designers do take into account, in their energy models, the influence of occupants on the building’s overall energy consumption. However, these models still have some drawbacks regarding the comprehension of real “occupants’ energy behaviors” which play an important role in the discrepancies between predicted and real energy consumptions. The behavioral factors behind occupants’ usage trends of energy are still not thoroughly explored. Therefore, it is assumed that a better comprehension of these behaviors and consumption mechanisms could lead to the identification of technical solutions and energy saving potentials, thus resulting in a more robust building design.

The present paper aims to provide an insight into domestic lighting usages. The main objective is to explore the key factors (socio-demographic, economic, technical and behavioral) responsible for the disparities in lighting consumption between one household and another. For this purpose, an experiment is performed concurrently to the proposal of a lighting usage model. A micro level investigation protocol is elaborated and used to conduct in-depth studies on the usage patterns of electric lighting. The survey is conducted on a sample of 8 French households. The methodology for constructing the experimental protocol, its deployment, as well as the results obtained and their analysis are presented in this paper. The need for further qualitative and quantitative studies to better understand the usage trends of electric lighting is discussed.

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