CFL energy efficient light bulb Remember the Olden Days, when the world was in black and white, and there were only a handful of light bulb types in the store? Those were also the days of extremely inefficient lighting… that …
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When it was announced in January last year that the European Union was banning incandescent light bulbs – the ones we’ve traditionally been used to – a lot of people in Britain were hopping mad (please note I resisted the temptation to say ‘incandescent with rage’). They didn’t like those new fangled compact fluorescent (CFL) energy saving light bulbs, not least because it was someone in Brussels trying to shove them down our throats, screw them in place and light up our mouths with them! (Not literally of course). But for one thing, they come in funny shapes that stick out of the top of lamp shades, and they don’t shine as brightly as proper light bulbs, and they have to warm up before they get to full brightness – surely that’s a step in the wrong direction!
All this fuss led to a light bulb buying frenzy, with people stocking up on traditional light bulbs, and the Daily Mail newspaper even giving away 25,000 incandescent light bulbs to its readers! But despite all this commotion, energy saving light bulbs were here to stay, so thank goodness someone took up the challenge to make them better! Witnessing the outrage felt by the people of Britain at being force fed oddly shaped bulbs (not literally), the nice people at Ledon had a bright idea, a light bulb moment you might say (groan). And so they set out to replace the CFL energy saving light bulbs with something better, which is why they created… fanfare moment… the LED light bulb.
Not only are Ledon LED bulbs shaped like, well, like light bulbs, they whack out their full brightness the instant they are switched on – so at least we are back to where we started! But then there’s a whole bunch of other reasons to think LED bulbs are the bees knees. They are far more efficient than long life incandescent bulbs, at least 85 per cent more in fact. You can expect an average lifespan of 25,000 hours for LED light bulbs. That means that with typical usage your LED light bulb could have a lifespan of 25 years! It would last nearly three years without ever turning it off, if you are so inclined, although switching it on and off does nothing to shorten the lifespan of this amazing bulb. They also use five times less energy than the old bulbs!
LED light bulbs are also much more efficient than those CFL energy saving light bulbs everyone hates. While a CFL bulb might last 8-15 times longer than an incandescent bulb, its lifespan will be significantly shortened if it is switched on and off regularly. In comparison, an LED bulb can be switched on and off as often as you like, and it will still last 20 times as long as a traditional bulb. CFL bulbs contain mercury, which is bad for us and makes disposal more difficult, but LED light bulbs contain nothing but goodness and light, errr, probably. OK, the science part isn’t important, but they certainly don’t have anything nasty in them, and you won’t have to worry about disposal anyway because they will probably last longer than you do. Light quality is as good as traditional incandescent bulbs, and there are no health issues associated with LED bulbs, unlike CFLs which have been known to cause adverse affects on people with epilepsy, migraine sufferers, people with lupus and even autism. So the basic message is this – the only bright thing to do is get LED light bulbs in your home.
The modern florescent lamp was first conceived by Peter Cooper Hewitt in the late 1890s and they were initially used for large industrial buildings and photographic studios.
This technology was later applied in the first commercially practical compact florescent light bulb (CFL) designed by George Inman and the General Electric Company. Although this development was designed over 70 years ago it was the forerunner to the modern CFL invented by Ed Hammer and General Electric in response to the 1973 oil crisis. Although a successful design, the invention wasn’t manufactured due to the expensive costs of production and the potential investment needed. The design was subsequently leaked and copied by other leading manufacturers leading to a gradual increase in usage and continued improvements.
Due to the rising cost of electricity in both the UK and the US many households and business, keen to reduce costs, have switched there lighting to CFL bulbs as they are on average 10 times more efficient. CFLs also help to reduce carbon emissions leading to a planned phase-out by the EU ensuring incandescent bulbs are no longer available by 2011. Despite the potential cost saving gained there remain staunch critics to CFL energy saving bulbs in the popular press. Much of this criticism involves popular myths associated with ‘energy savers’ that have long since been ironed out by manufacturers.
With headlines such as ‘Environmentally friendly light bulbs ‘can cause skin cancer’’ (2008) and ‘Revolt! Robbed of their right to buy traditional light bulbs’ (2009) the Daily Mail is leading the campaign against Energy Saving bulbs. Such reports have been slammed by the government and the Lighting Association as irresponsible ‘scare stories’ to sell newspapers and last year the Energy Saving Trust set out to convert the public by introducing the ‘Pepsi Challenge’. This survey, to study people’s reactions to energy saving bulbs, allowed people to enter two different rooms, one lit by energy savers and the other by traditional light bulbs. The study found that half the people could not tell the difference and additionally 2 out of 3 people preferred the energy saving ones.
Concerns over the mercury content of energy saving bulbs have also been one of the papers ‘buzz topics’. Realistically however most modern CFLs use amalgam, a mercury substitute that is completely safe to handle, transport and store and poses no direct risk to humans or the environment. Other bulbs use recycled mercury and their price included a recycling charge making them far more environmentally friendly than incandescent bulbs.
With climate change a continual threat to our way of life, is it irresponsible for the Daily Mail to wage war against energy saving products? The paper reported almost continually throughout the beginning of the recession on ‘money saving tips. There promotion earlier this year to distribute a free 100w bulb to every reader has been criticised by some environmental groups as ‘climate suicide’.
The paper tends to use outdated views of CFLs to convince its readership that they are being policed into buying something they don’t want. However, is it not true that in many aspects of our advanced capitalist society? Indeed wasn’t the UK’s newspaper media guilty of ‘barging out’ the smaller niche newspapers in order to create a greater market share (and limited consumer choice).
As paper news becomes ever more obsolete, newspapers need bigger gimmicks and more shocking headlines to shift units, this results in more questionable facts and more outlandish claims. I encourage anyone to seek a balanced view in the topic, and I am confident that reducing energy cost and carbon emissions is a good thing. I encourage you to take a look at Greenhouse Organisation should you require energy saving light bulbs.
From the time the incandescent bulb was introduced long ago by Thomas Edison, this engineering isn’t basically that as ingenious from what we have known. A lot of people realize that this type takes in high percentage in your electrical expenses which is not a very good news. Say thanks to the energy saving bulbs which what we call today as compact fluorescent light bulbs, and we are now able to stay away from increasingly high electrical bills. This kind of energy saving bulbs are 3-4 times decreased concerning their electrical power as opposed to the regular incandescent bulbs, which permits you to conserve nearly 75% of your energy utilization. Not only this energy saving bulbs is very helpful to your pocket, it is likewise beneficial to the environment.
Considering the fact that you will benefit from a smaller amount energy, it comes after that there will likely be minimal power breakdowns, in addition to the smog created by power emissions right from coal and power plants will drastically be diminished. The good thing about this energy saving bulbs, particularly when your shorter; literally, is that you simply won’t have to climb up the ceiling in many cases,in order to put new ones simply because they last more over incandescent bulbs 6-15 times longer causing them to be perfect for hard to reach areas. CFL’s are specially designed with a heat range. That is why you will find specific indoor bulbs and outdoor’ s as well.
Energy saving light bulbs also comes in different designs and styles. Some are made having a number of tubes while the others are presented in spiral and circular tube shape. Basically, the amount of light generated by the bulb is influenced by its tubes. To allow the users change the tube without the need to change the ballast, both of these segments have been especially structured separately, however, you will find some which are permanently mounted on each other. Additionally, you can as well discover a couple of them that is enveloped within a glass globe.
Generally, heat is the means in exactly how light is being produced on a standard incandescent light bulb, even so, in an energy saving bulb, light is a product by means of a chemical response. Gas fills the bulbs in order to develop UV light when it comes in touch with electricity. Believe it or not, this light is considerably less to the energy essential to incandescent bulbs. The bulb filters the UV light that traverses thru a white layer, and this is the light that we typically see.
So that you can maximize its environmental element, we ought to be knowledgable on the appropriate ways of discarding these energy saving bulbs. Seeing that there is minimal mercury included on the bulbs, they must be placed in correct disposal areas in order to avoid health dangers from mercury spills.
Energy saving bulbs like the CFL will definitely replace just about all incandescent bulbs sometime soon.As a matter of fact, several countries are decided to implement them. This is only a simple work if you prefer to conserve energy at your home. It could cost you a little for purchase, even so it will save you a great deal in your pocket and mother earth is conserved likewise.
The advancement in lighting technologies now means that there are a spectrum of energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs available to purchase which can make it difficult to decide which ones are right for your application. The array of energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs use an assortment of technologies, specifically, LED, Halogen and CFL all of which have special characteristics and energy saving abilities. In this article I will provide a resume of the available technologies for energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs that is expected to enable you to make a more informed choice.
The Halogen Bulb
Halogen bulbs are the modern day’s equivalent of the incandescent filament light bulb that was first brought to market by Edison greater than 100 years ago. The incandescent light bulb was as a matter of fact invented by Thomas Edison about 1879. Most halogen energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs save more than 25% in electricity costs and the greater part are compatible with dimmer switches. Additionally, halogen energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs employ miniature technology which means the bulbs can be made small and with gratifying aesthetics.
CFL Light Bulbs
The CFL energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs is in essence a little fluorescent tube and has awesome efficiency saving 75-80% in electricity. The technology has developed a lot from the initial CFL’s and good ones do not flicker and they attain full brightness pretty quickly. The main drawback of the CFL energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs is that its appearance can be poor, particularly where the fluorescent tubes are evident, but there are some very great looking spherical shaped CFL’s available.
LED Light Bulbs
LED light bulbs are the ideal type of energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs. When compared to orthodox light bulbs then LED’s is going to provide approximately a 90% energy saving. Also LED bulbs have an extremely long life and their particularly low energy consumption means that CO2 emissions are minimised making the LED light bulb the favorite green choice. The final matter is the visual appearance and the high technology look of the energy saving light bulbs and LED bulbs has the ability to look very good with contemporary interiors, but if yours is traditional then choose wisely.
By Joel McDonald
The world seems to be all about efficiency and ways to protect the environment. You want to conserve energy, but sometimes it is hard to know if products are more hype than anything or if they are really worth the investment. You hear about energy efficient lights all the time, you see them in the store right next to the cheap light bulbs that you always buy. The light bulbs that claim to be energy efficient are more expensive so you pass them by but this is actually costing you money!!
Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL) bulbs do help the environment, conserve energy and save money in the long run. These energy efficient bulbs use an incredible sixty five to eighty percent LESS energy than the incandescent bulbs you usually buy. This means that switching to CFL bulbs instead of the less efficient bulbs that many of us use, you can actually save up to 7% off your energy bill each month. These bulbs also last much longer than a regular bulb and so while you pay more for one initially you save money because they can last longer than regular bulbs which you would have to replace two or three times (or more).
Compact Fluorescent Lamp bulbs work differently than regular light bulbs. Regular bulbs use most of the electricity to heat up the filament inside of them which in turn lights up. Only about 2% of the electricity used by these light bulbs is actually used to produce light, the rest is used to create heat. A Compact Fluorescent bulb passes the electrical current through a mercury vapour which in turn creates an ultraviolet light. The light created is then absorbed by the phosphorescent coating that is on the light bulb which produces a glowing effect.
CFL bulbs turn over 20% of the energy they use into light so they require much less energy to produce the same brightness as a regular bulb. These bulbs can be used in your existing light fixtures and lamps so there is no extra cost to convert to them above the initial cost of the bulbs, which as stated above is made up for in energy savings and longer lasting bulbs.
Another choice for energy efficient lighting is to use LED ((Light Emitting Diode) bulbs. Light emitting diode bulbs are by far the most energy efficient bulbs available. These bulbs do not generate heat and do not have a filament. They very rarely need replacing and last longer than any other option. They are one of the safest choices as well because they do not generate heat there is not a concern of being burned or a fire occurring because of the bulb. Light Emitting Diode bulbs do require the initial investment and you may need to change the fixtures.
The return on your investment by the immense saving on energy bills and almost never needing to replace the bulbs is above and beyond any amount that you spend at first. You also have the knowledge that you are saving tonnes of greenhouse gases from harming the environment. LED lighting is becoming more affordable every day with the growing demand for energy efficient lighting and is most definitely the way of lighting the future for years to come.Energy efficient lighting is not only smart but is one way to cut down on your carbon footprint, save the environment and keep money in your pocket rather than the electric company’s.
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It’s human nature. We’re always eager to explore the newest product, especially the ones touted to improve our lives. At the same time, we can be skeptical about new product technologies, and it can be hard to decide what, and whether, to buy. This is certainly the case with energy-saving light bulbs. The Energy Independence and Security Act, passed in December of 2007, started the clock ticking on the end of the inexpensive and reliable incandescent light bulb. While it’s true that a few bulb manufacturers have flirted with the idea of nudging the energy efficiency of Mr. Edison’s classic up enough to meet the law’s requirements, it now appears likely that U.S. consumers will need to convert to 21st century green light bulbs for most uses starting in 2012.
The mainstream media has been full of news about the coming light bulb revolution. In the last week of May alone, both The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times ran high profile articles addressing emerging trends on CFL (Compact Fluorescent Lamps) and LED (Light Emitting Diode) bulbs.
Since they cost more than traditional bulbs, most people buy energy-saving light bulbs for two main reasons: they save money in the long run and they’re better for the environment. Specifically, because green light bulbs use much less energy to produce the same amount of light, they reduce harmful gas emissions from coal-fired power plants (which generate 50% of the electricity used in the United States).
So consumers should immediately replace all their incandescents with energy-saving light bulbs, right? Well, not so fast. With lighting, quality matters especially in our homes where we gather, read, cook, eat, celebrate and entertain. There’s a perception that green light bulbs require sacrificing light quality. Don’t believe it. Many eco-friendly light bulbs cast soft, beautiful light. And no one should feel guilty about not switching out every fixture containing a regular light bulb. Invest first in replacing the bulbs used most frequently. Savings will be bigger and pay back periods shorter with this approach. And truth be told, there are scenarios where the best bulb is the old-fashioned incandescent.
7 Keys to Choosing the Best Green Light Bulbs for Your Home or Office
Choosing from the many energy-saving light bulbs on the market today can be tricky. Gone are the days when all that mattered was bulb wattage and shape.
By keeping these seven simple guidelines in mind, you’ll be on a path to making smart decisions about what to buy to meet your needs for energy-saving light bulbs in this new green age:
1. Pay more, not less – to save money in the long run, your new green light bulbs should be able to last for several thousand hours. If you buy the cheapest ones you can find, the odds are greater that they won’t.
2. Pick your spots – if a fixture is completely enclosed or is lit for less than 15 minutes at a time and less than two hours a day, CFLs are a poor investment. Low energy, mercury-free halogens are available that are worth a look in these situations. Wait until the existing bulb burns out (or hold onto it for later use – see #6).
3. Nobody likes the blues – the bluish light cast by many fluorescent tubes is not appealing to most homeowners. When buying CFLs and LEDs choose “warm white” or “soft white” labels for color that will look pleasingly familiar. Energy-saving light bulbs labeled “cool white,” “natural light,” or “daylight” are blue-hued and best for targeted applications like reading, task lighting and exterior fixtures, not for living areas, atmosphere or accent lighting.
4. Dimming for dummies – most CFL and LED bulbs can’t be used with dimmer switches. Look for green light bulbs that are boldly labeled “dimmable.” And while the industry has made great strides in recent years, most energy-saving light bulbs do not dim as well as traditional incandescent bulbs. However, the big energy savings are compelling for most homeowners. Making the switch to dimmable CFLs or LEDs in a busy family kitchen can be a real money saver, including reduced cooling costs because neither type generates as much heat as incandescents. Last point: the dimmer switch should be compatible with the green light bulbs you buy.
5. Let’s do the twist – spiral or “twister” CFLs are the least expensive type. If these green light bulbs are hidden behind a shade (though not totally enclosed), buying a spiral lamp will cut the payback period versus glass covered CFLs.
6. Stay out of the closet – most closets need short bursts of instantaneous light. This is usually true of powder rooms, basements, attics and garages. Among energy saving light bulbs, CFLs in particular aren’t suited for this purpose. Traditional bulbs (or again, low energy halogens) are best in these scenarios until something better comes along.
7. Innovative, intriguing, expensive – mercury-free LED bulbs are the future of lighting, case closed. These green light bulbs use less electricity than even CFLs and they last 30,000 hours or more. However, current prices per bulb are as high as $100, which means the payback period for most home-based uses is too long to justify the price. If you are curious about this new technology and live in an area with high retail electricity costs, you might consider LED replacement bulbs for one or two fixtures that get a lot of use (6+ hours per day). Re-read Key #1 before you invest in these types of energy-saving light bulbs.
Ignore the Naysayers – Green Light Bulbs Are Here to Stay
One last point: mercury makes CFLs (and fluorescent tubes for that matter) work. Some serious people, including syndicated columnist George Will, say we should avoid energy-saving light bulbs for this reason. We disagree. Coal-fired electricity generation is the largest contributor of mercury to the environment. Through reduced electricity consumption, a single CFL will keep a lot more mercury out of the environment over its lifetime than it contains. Still, releasing any mercury into the environment is a bad idea, so it’s important to recycle CFLs when they stop working. Recycling your used green light bulbs is getting easier all the time. Visit www.lamprecycle.org for resources.
Green light bulbs are here to stay. This is good news for our wallets and our world because the cheapest, cleanest kilowatt of electricity is the one that is never produced in the first place. Become smart enough to buy the right energy-saving light bulbs and don’t look back.