I have been talking about CFL light bulbs on this site for just about as long as I have been publishing it, about 4.5 years. Every light fixture in my home(s) has had a CFL bulb in them, and my electric bill has rarely been above $35/month at the absolute highest. Those bulbs are a huge reason for my bill being so low, as CFL bulbs use about 75% less energy than standard incandescent bulbs and can lasts up to 10 times longer. They also produce about 75% less heat, so they are safer to operate and can cut energy costs associated with home cooling. A CFL light bulb rated between 23 and 30 watts of power actually puts out as much light as a 100 watt incandescent bulb, so you can see just how much less energy you use when they are in your home. They are inexpensive, easy to find, and last 8-10 years; what’s not to love? Even the claims about mercury and toxicity are way overblown, so you can feel totally safe using CFL bulbs in your own home. But what if you want to use even less electricity and spend even less on your utility bill?
You may want to check out LED light bulbs.
LED (light-emitting diode) bulbs have been around for quite a while, but have always been the much more expensive option when it came to efficiently lighting your home. I remember when I was sent some LED bulbs to test out a few years back and their retail price was over $65 a pop! No matter how much you care about the environment or your electric bill, that was a lot to spend on a single light bulb. I never would have done it, that’s for sure. But lately I have been hearing whispers that the price of these bulbs have come down quite a bit, and it turns out that the rumors were right – they can now be found in the range of $10 – $40. So when I was contacted by Home Depot to try their EcoSmart LED bulb, I most certainly jumped at the chance. They sent me a 40 watt equivalent LED (which sells for $17.97) to try out at my house, and I have had it in my desk lamp for a few weeks now. It replaced a 40 watt equivalent CFL bulb, and the light from the LED is brighter and more “white” than the CFL. Right away I was sold on the idea of LED lights in my house, because the light (at least from this one) is truly a better quality light than than CFL’s normally produce. And aside from the more reasonable price as of late, that’s not even the best part about new LED lights. They also:
For those of you who won’t buy CFL bulbs because they are “squiggly”, here is what LED bulbs look like:
They look more like the light bulbs everyone is more accustomed to, they save a ton of energy, they reduce utility bills, they last 1/2 of a lifetime, and the price of them is dropping down to much more reasonable levels. The future of lighting is definitely in LED’s, especially since new rules about incandescents start in 2012 with a full ban in 2014, so everyone will have to switch over to more efficient lights by then anyway. If the price of LED’s can be brought down just a little bit more, I would venture that we will soon see the end of CFL bulbs as well. But for now, I recommend you try both CFL and LED lights for your home, compare the lighting for yourselves, and go with whatever works best for you. Since LED bulbs are cheaper today than they were before, though, I will be replacing any CFLs that burn out with these kind of lights.
It’s pretty much a no-brainer.
Copyright © 2002-2013. All rights reserved