Home>Discussions>ELECTRICAL & LIGHTING>CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?
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Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

Growing up with incandescents,it took some time getting used to,but there ok,I have not had to change a lightbulb for almost four yrs now,as far as the coloring of the bulbs,there are now a lot of cfl's that mock the incandescents,which would be the kitchen&bath,there are others that have a higher color rendering index to receive truer colors close to the way they appear in the sun,for outside fixtures with motion sensing,it is not ideal,for the cfl's,according to consumer reports should stay on 15 minutes or otherwise it shortens the life span,and there are some that will work with photocells,but that would mean buying the light fixture(pole lights).With the ceiling fans it would be better to use incandescents because of vibrations,but the cfls do work,in the matter of dimmers,there are dimmable cfl's that will work in fans,with the candelabra base(small base).I am sure as time passes they will improve as well as maybe a lesser price & when the start improve the led lightbulb maybe the do away with cfls.As far as disposal,it takes some getting used to just like recycling,other than that we all have been throwing away flourescent tubes away for years & there is a lot more mercury in those than there is in a cfl,but anyway.Just checkout consumer reports.com
PS If by doing all of this with cfls to slow the use of fossil fuels by the electric companies,which will slow the green house effect,I'm all for it,as well as the money I have saved on my electric bill since i have been using them.

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

I replaced every bulb in the house with CFLs I love them simply because its shaved off 80 bucks a month on my electric bill, for the most obvious problems when it comes to the spiral look of the bulbs in fixtures (like in the bathroom wall fixtures) I turned the fixture so that the shade opening pointed towards the ceiling I did try the bulbs that look like the incandescent style but the delay on them is too noticeable they take too long to warm up and get to their maximum brightness.
For sconces I added a harp to the fixture so the shade isnt grabbing the bulb.
For the horrible color issues I use two different types of CFL's to mimic sunlight rather than just straight soft light ;)
I replaced all of the pot light bulbs with a shorter CFL and honestly when I have them on you really cant tell theres a spiral in there.
And if its a question of mercury content Im pretty much of the mind all bulbs contain mercury, until TPTB come up with a bulb thats mercury free we have to use them but at least these last 10 times longer than the old standbys, so we are actually not increasing the use of mercury if we think about it in that light *no pun intended* as long as we dispose of them properly there are receptacles for doing so with your local garbage companies Walmart is another place that has receptacles for your burned out bulbs....
Im a happy CFL user 80 bucks aint nothin to sneeze at thats groceries for a week for me! :D

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

80 bucks a month???
C'mon now, that cannot be true....maybe 80 bucks a year but not a month.

Like I mention earlier, it is not cost effective and in my case, it does not last longer than regular bulbs.

I believe people are wasting energy by not using their head wisely.

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

Sorry my dear maybe I should have stated why so much but its true Im a caregiver to my MIL I have to have lights on all the time at night due to Macular Degeneration & Alz she sundowns at night badly *shadowing of the night gets a person suffering from Alz. paranoid and sometimes progresses into paranoid delusions* she wanders and with steps in my home I need the lights on, its not a matter of wasting energy its a safety issue. The $80 savings is real ;)
BTW its not cost effective? Have you shopped at Costco or drug stores or Walmart for that matter?
Every pack of CFL's I got were on sale for $1.99 for a 4 pack Costco there was an 8 pack for I believe $2.99 after PG&E instant rebate a few months back so their no more expensive than an incandescent bulb.
So far Ive had mine in for 1 year to be exact with no burnouts yet and 6 of them are in ceiling fans

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

My wife and I moved into our this old house {1910} a little over 2 yrs ago. The previous owner had installed CFL BULBS in the basement. After the first year I had realized I had yet to have to change them. Since then we've replaced all the rest of the blubs with CFL"s. They do take a little getting used to the warm up time, although I"ve only noticed a minute or two. We've even tryed the new 3 way bulbs without a problem. As for the clip on shade lamps, we still use regular bulbs because as stated the shades do not fit right on the CFL's. Over all we have seen a $20 dollar a month reduction in our elec. bills. After 2 1/2 years I have yet to have to replace one .

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

I hatem anywhere accept my basement in certain areas and my garage, but i actually only use flourescent tubes.. Ever checked into a hotel that only uses them? Horrible. Asthetically inappropriate in an old house lke ours. I work for an electric company that gave them out for "free" (untitl the conservation program surcharge appeared on their bills. Talk about a riot! Several employees that received them reported that they shorted and nearly caused FIRES, and were promptly ignored. Cheap overseas produced junk. As far as savings go, a 100w bub burning 24 hrs a day at approx 10 cents a kwh only uses 24 cents! The big users of home electric are Heating/Cooling, Water heating, and refrigeration in that order, unless you have a hot tub, or something. We all need to know that the government is about to push conservation programs on utilities are going to RAISE BILLS. The focus need to be on the appliances that are the main users and those manufacturers as most people are gonna buy whats on the shelf. Try walking into Home depot and comparing an electric water heater to gas one for potential energy use. Ask the sales person. Even use the "energy guide" . Clear as mud. And people are worried about light bulbs...:eek: Side note - bought a pair of sunglasses at walmart tonight, which i examined for scratches under flourescent light at the store. None noted. Got home and held to my 100 w incandescent SCRATCHED BADLY..hmmm

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?
YukSchmuk wrote:

I don't like the delay they have coming to full light. Our ceiling light / fan fixtures all have two light sockets so I put a regular bulb in one and a CFL in the other. That way I get a good bit of light immediately and still have some savings by using the CFL.

You may want to ck this product out for the bulbs when using lamp shades.


Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

I use CFL's throughout my home and I'm very happy with them. However, one of their biggest sticking points based on many people I've talked to is that the most common and least expensive spiral shaped ones work very poorly with clip-on shades. GE rolled out a new CFL in Dec 2008 that has a more traditional incandescent shape that solves the problem except for one thing: They cost at least FOUR TIMES AS MUCH as the spiral ones of the same wattage! (They're also VERY slow to brighten up compared to their spiral counterparts.)

This prompted me to come up with a solution that my friend Gizmo just alluded to. It's called the Magic Toob Lampshade Leveler. It allows people to make a simple adaptation to their existing clip-on shades that allows them to grip those funky spiral shaped bulbs perfectly! The cost to consumers is only about $1 per lampshade and once they've been modified the problem goes away permanently! You can see a demonstration and find out more at:


I would be happy to provide a free sample to anyone who is interested. Just e-mail me at: [email protected]

Nimble Jack Enterprises

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

As others have said, it is sometimes annoying that the CFls take a few minutes to completely light up. But I still say it is so worth the energy conservation. Incandescent bulbs waste so much energy, it's such a shame. If you have a break, just remember how to properly clean up from a broken CFL. If you clean up properly, you shouldn't need to worry about dangerous mercury exposure.

Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?

I'd certainly agree that the energy savings are worth any minor hassle. Its true that a 100w bulb only burns through 24c a day if your costs are 10c a kw/hr, mine are closer to 13 near me, but still. However, times 365 at my electrical costs and that is $100 a year. I might not leave lights on 24/7, but with my wife staying at home with the kids, usage at night, etc I'd say we probably average out over 150w all the time (when averaged).

So in a year if I used incandescent that it well over $150 a year in electrical usage (about 10% or a little more of my electric bill for the year). Onerous, no, but using CLFs means that my electric bill is about 8% lower then it would be otherwise. The CFLs paid for themselves in less then 6 months.

The slow 'warm up' time annoys me occasionally, but in most rooms starting at only 20% illumination (around abouts) isn't going to be a big deal. The only room where it is really annoying is my basement. Probably in part because of the cooler temperatures down there, but it is really dim at first. Only 2 can lights with 65w equiv. reflector CFLs. I'd love to upgrade it to 3 cans, but it would be a royal pain in the butt as I would need to drill through a lot of ceiling joists and cut up a lot of drywall to do it.

I am hoping the price of LEDs comes down enough that it is worth while to buy a couple of them for those lights (they are the most used in the house as well as my wife and the kids spend most of their day down there, so a little extra energy savings would be nice as well).

Now if only LEDs will come down in price a little, and get a little more efficient (the Philips LEDs that Home Depot near me is carrying are only about 70% as efficient as the CFL reflectors they carry in a warm color temperature).


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