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Quick, run don’t walk to your local big box store and pick-up as many incandescent light bulbs before they are gone! Okay, well that’s only if you haven’t already made the switch to CFL or LED. And if you are just shaking your head confused, let’s talk.
For many years, the lightbulb as we know it were the cheap incandescent light bulbs – you know the buy 4 for around $3. Then several years back, CFLs were introduced. These are the funny shaped bulbs that cost more money but promised to save you money. For a while they lit your house funny – creating an odd bluish yellow tint to everything they illuminated – most new CFL bulbs now a days work fine, producing normal color lighting.
Anyways, the 100 watt and 75 watt bulbs have already been phased out (maybe that’s why I couldn’t find any when I just wanted to buy cheap bulbs!), and now the 60 watt and 40 watt incandescent light bulbs are biting the dust.
Why Are Incandescent Light Bulbs Discontinued
The 60- and 40-watt light bulbs are being discontinued because they fail to meet standards set forth in EISA (Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007). That legislation set a timetable that requires all screw-in electric light bulbs to use 25 percent less power by 2014 and 65 percent less by 2020.
Before you go getting your panties in a wad, know that this change will save you money in the long run! Phasing out the incandescent light bulbs could save Americans as much as $13 billion annually on electricity bills. So while your receipt may show you paid more for your light bulbs, just know that there are benefits when it comes to your electricity bill!
P.S. Out of curiosity, I took a stroll down the light bulb aisle at Target this past weekend and it was slim pickins – maybe people are hoarding incandescent light bulbs? Watch – 6 months down the road, we will see these things all over eBay.
What is an Incandescent Bulb Anyways?
Are you wondering what is an incandescent light bulb — well here you go. Thanks Wikipedia!
An incandescent light bulb, incandescent lamp or incandescent light globe is an electric light which produces light with a filament wire heated to a high temperature by an electric current passing through it, until it glows (see Incandescence). The hot filament is protected from oxidation with a glass or quartz bulb that is filled with inert gas or evacuated. In a halogen lamp, filament evaporation is prevented by a chemical process that redeposits metal vapor onto the filament, extending its life. The light bulb is supplied with electrical current by feed-through terminals or wires embedded in the glass. Most bulbs are used in a socket which provides mechanical support and electrical connections.
Incandescent bulbs are manufactured in a wide range of sizes, light output, and voltage ratings, from 1.5 volts to about 300 volts. They require no external regulating equipment, have low manufacturing costs, and work equally well on either alternating current or direct current. As a result, the incandescent lamp is widely used in household and commercial lighting, for portable lighting such as table lamps, car headlamps, and flashlights, and for decorative and advertising lighting.
Incandescent bulbs are much less efficient than most other types of lighting; most incandescent bulbs convert less than 5% of the energy they use into visible light (with the remaining energy being converted into heat). The luminous efficacy of a typical incandescent bulb is 16 lumens per watt, compared to the 60 lm/W of a compact fluorescent bulb. Some applications of the incandescent bulb deliberately use the heat generated by the filament. Such applications include incubators, brooding boxes for poultry, heat lights for reptile tanks, infrared heating for industrial heating and drying processes, lava lamps, and the Easy-Bake Oven toy. Incandescent bulbs also have short lifetimes compared with other types of lighting; around 1000 hours for home light bulbs versus up to 10,000 hours for compact fluorescents and up to 100,000 hours for LED lamps.
Cost of CFL and LED Bulbs
I’m all for being smarter with energy, but I just realized that we have numerous candelabra light bulbs and those are incandescent. A quick search on Home Depot showed that they are definitely featuring the new LED and CFL bulbs with only a minimal stock of incandescent bulbs. For 3 of my candelabra light bulbs in LED – i’m looking at $29.99. I know I never paid over $5 for 4 of these! Ouch, let’s hope the savings will show because this will hurt the pocketbook with the amount of lights we have in this house!
Have You Already Transitioned to CFL or LED Light Bulbs?