1:5:10:365 EcoTip Blog

January 28, 2008

:028 Compact Fluorescent Lights

Filed under: :028 CFLs — Tags: , , , , , , — John Banta @ 12:01 am

Welcome to today’s 1:5:10:365 Tip for becoming a better steward for our home and planet.

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1:5:10:028 Tip: Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) have come a long way. Presently about 20% of households have switched from the standard incandescent bulbs.

You can get about 60 watts of light for 17 watts of power, but not all compact fluorescent bulbs are created equal. I recommend that you try several different brands and styles. You may like the colors from some better than. Another difference is the speed at which they power up. Some start out dim and attain their full light output over several minutes. This helps extend the life of the bulb for situations where they will be switched on and off repeatedly. If you need and want instant light in an area that you will be switching on and off – you probably won’t get the expected eight years of life from a CFL, but it can still be worth the pay back by reducing the light bill by more than a third. The cost of the bulbs was only $1 each at our local dollar store. I’ve seen them for about the same price at Lowe’s and Home Depot. That means they should pay for themselves with savings in 4 to 6 weeks.

The big downside for all fluorescent is they contain mercury. Tomorrow I will talk about proper disposal of fluorescent and the next day mercury clean-up if a bulb breaks.

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Additional Information –

GE has posted additional facts and benefits for CFLs at: http://www.gelighting.com/na/home_lighting/ask_us/faq_compact.htm

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