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Let's talk Compact Flourescents....

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Old 11-25-2008, 10:23 AM   #1
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Let's talk Compact Flourescents....

....for your home.

These things are neat and I really don't know much about them other than they're supposed to save energy and last longer. Back when they first came out, I bought one for my laundry room - and it's still alive & kicking for all these years.

My electric company (upon request) will send you a couple compact flourescents for free to 'get you started' with energy efficiency (per say). These two bulbs have been in my closet for a long time and I finally put them in a couple lamps about 2 weeks ago. Today - one of the bulbs completely died. And I thought these things were supposed to last a LONG time?
This bulb is a Niagara brand. The other bulb has been good and has been nice & bright upon turning it on.

If there's one thing I don't like about these things - is they're a lot dimmer when you first turn them on. When they 'warm up', they get really bright.

School me on these things....
So, anyone have recommendations on compact flourescents? Is there such a thing as them being BRIGHT when you first turn them on? What other types bulbs are energy efficient and bright? Pros cons, suggestions?
What about LED's for home usage (other than them being expensive...??)?
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:31 AM   #2
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I've got a bunch of those at my house. I first started out with the soft white bulbs, but those give off a weird kind of light, so I went with the "natural light" compact bulbs & really like that "clean white" look. They seem to be a little brighter too.... They have them @ The Home Depot & are in a blue & white box I think...
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:32 AM   #3
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Fluro technology is getting better by the day. the new fluros are 100x better then they used to be. It is true they have a warmup period, but on the new ones its seconds, I have noticed that the glass spiral is very delicate. LED's are the future for sure, however still expensive. I read china was building a 300watt led. 2" in diameter, however the cost of such a bulb is millions, soon tho we will have LED's in our homes.
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:33 AM   #4
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My entire house has compact flos in it, except for the living room where I want to dim the lights.

Had one explode once. Turned the switch on and POW! Threw glass and plastic from the base all over the room, was a bear to get what was left of it out of the socket. Don't buy super-cheap ones.
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:38 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HerNameIsLucy View Post
My entire house has compact flos in it, except for the living room where I want to dim the lights.

Had one explode once. Turned the switch on and POW! Threw glass and plastic from the base all over the room, was a bear to get what was left of it out of the socket. Don't buy super-cheap ones.
Wow, that's scarry! Never had that happen yet, but I suppose any bulb could do that.....
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:39 AM   #6
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Forget about LED. They are too expensive and best for task lighting. The compacts that get bright as they warm up are the Panasonic's. They are big and globey looking. If you want instant on compacts, go for the curly ones. Now remember you can get them in "day light", cool white and warm white. Warm white mimics the age old incandescent bulbs and cool white are a little brighter and may not suit some people's liking for living room use. Day light is too bright and best for laundry rooms, garages, work shops etc. I'm not an expert but I know enough to build the bomb.
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HerNameIsLucy View Post
My entire house has compact flos in it, except for the living room where I want to dim the lights.
I know they have dimable's now but they are pricy.
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:49 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DevilsChild View Post
I know they have dimable's now but they are pricy.
yeah i saw them at home depot, did some quick math and came up with something like it would take me about 12 years to make up the money those would save me in electric costs.
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:01 PM   #9
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If you guys want to save money, did you think about install the Solar Panel on your roof, and you can sell the electric to your power company provider, you will see the credit on your electrical bill.
Also the local government & electrical company do have a program to save you money on the installation.
Check out your local electrical company provider.
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wing103 View Post
If you guys want to save money, did you think about install the Solar Panel on your roof, and you can sell the electric to your power company provider, you will see the credit on your electrical bill.
Also the local government & electrical company do have a program to save you money on the installation.
Check out your local electrical company provider.
Do you have them?

That's a very very expensive project to jump into and involves lots of research.

For now, all I want is a few light bulbs that last a long time (get my money worth).
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:13 PM   #11
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I use compact fluros in my house. I dropped my electric bill from $185 in June to $97 in July. Now that I have roommates, I have a $132 electric bill.
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:18 PM   #12
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Also keep in mind that CF bulbs should be disposed of properly. They contain a very small amount of mercury. They should be recycled, intact, at a place that can handle them properly.
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:31 PM   #13
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thats impressive!
I have a small house on a good size lot. I am never there. So, why pay for a house you don't use.
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:42 PM   #14
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My mom has lupus and the CF bulbs really irritate her. This has something to do with the high speed flickering of the light.

We have all CF in our house and garage except in the living room fans. They're bad when it is really cold (~35F) outside because they have to warm up. I also like them because they don't produce as much heat as incandescents.

I've heard that in instances where the bulb is only on for a minute or two, the incandescent use less energy.
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:51 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lsocoee View Post

I've heard that in instances where the bulb is only on for a minute or two, the incandescent use less energy.
not true, myth busters did a whole episode on light bulbs. they tested and it takes such a small amount more power to turn them on, it was unmeasurable basically. It took more to light the incandescent then the CFL. They did find with the tube floros that it took more power tho.
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Old 11-25-2008, 01:11 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonjay View Post
not true, myth busters did a whole episode on light bulbs. they tested and it takes such a small amount more power to turn them on, it was unmeasurable basically. It took more to light the incandescent then the CFL. They did find with the tube floros that it took more power tho.
yup. watched the same episode.
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Old 11-25-2008, 01:22 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonjay View Post
not true, myth busters did a whole episode on light bulbs. they tested and it takes such a small amount more power to turn them on, it was unmeasurable basically. It took more to light the incandescent then the CFL. They did find with the tube floros that it took more power tho.
maybe it was an issue of longevity. I really don't know. Maybe the bulbs don't last as many hours if you only use them for a few minutes at a time.
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Old 11-25-2008, 02:19 PM   #19
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I'm not a big fan... Maybe I got cheap ones or something, but the ones that I put in my bathroom take so long to warm up to an acceptable level of brightness (minutes) that I usually find myself pissing on the floor in the morning because I can't see the toilet. I really prefer the warm, yellowish hue of incandescent lights, and I really like to keep the lighting dim in my house most of the time. I put a few CF floods in my garage and wind up having to use my Dewalt portable flashlight most of the time in there because they don't put out enough light.
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Old 11-25-2008, 02:19 PM   #20
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I have used them for years. The earliest ones lasted the longest. I still have one from 12 years ago and it's still providing the same crappy light quality as when I bought it. The newer ones look much better and do not have the hum the earliest ones had.

I found that they die very quickly in the bathroom. It's probably the humidity. We went through 2 sets of them in 6 months, and are now back to incandescents in the bathroom. They also don't last as long in lights that get turned on and off a lot. The hall lights seem to die at the same rate as the office light, despite being on for only about 10% of the time. But they are flipped on/off many times a day.

I have found they all take a few minutes to reach full brightness.

Make sure you recycle the dead bulbs. Otherwise you release mercury into the landfill.
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