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60% of Americans Unaware of Looming Incandescent Bulb Phase Out 944

Posted by Soulskill
from the let's-complain-about-color-temperature-some-more dept.
Lucas123 writes "Even though production of 75W and 100W incandescent lamps were phased out earlier this year, many U.S. consumers remain blissfully unaware of The Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) of 2007, an energy efficiency standard that requires an initial 30% reduction in energy use for screw-in bulbs. By 2020, the federal standard requires bulbs to use 65% less energy. According to a new survey, only 40% of Americans are aware that incandescent bulbs are being phased out. However, the federal regulations are about to impact the most popular bulbs of all — 40W and 60W lamps. As of Jan. 1, 2014, the bulbs will no longer be produced. A significant portion of those who are aware of the phase out have been hoarding the bulbs in anticipation of the ban."
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60% of Americans Unaware of Looming Incandescent Bulb Phase Out

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  • by SerpentMage (13390) <ChristianHGross@yah o o .ca> on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @06:08PM (#45783825)

    We have been going through this phase out (Switzerland) and while I was using "neon" tubes and halogens I am switching to LED's. They are awesome. Low energy, last forever, very bright, and do not generate any heat. IMO LED's have come a very long way in a very short time.

  • by Arker (91948) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @06:19PM (#45783883) Homepage Journal

    You obviously dont live in an area with less than perfect power delivery.

    Where I am is not bad, but still just far enough from perfect that those new 'long life' bulbs do not last any longer than incandescents. They just cost 20 times as much, they arent as bright, and they are inferior in absolutely every way.

    Rich idiots in privileged settings come up with this crap and force it down the throats of the rest of us, and no offense but you sure sound like part of the problem. Just because you dont need something does not give you license to outlaw it and screw with the rest of us like that. If you dont think incandescent bulbs are a good value for you then dont buy them, but preventing those of us that do need them from obtaining them is just meanness.

  • by hawguy (1600213) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @06:37PM (#45783987)

    They aren't banned, as you can still buy the rough service bulbs. Newcandescent among others sells them for $2-3 a pop, and they have a 10000 hour life instead of the 1000 hour life that normal bulbs claim. They are cheaper and the light is easier on the eyes than any of the alternatives available at this time. Go rough service, I have a whole case on order and they should last me for decades.

    One way they get the longer lifetime of the bulbs is to use a thicker filament, and they rate the lumens at 130V, while most homes are going to have 110 - 120V delivered to their homes, so you're getting less light out of the bulb.

    You can get a quaility Halogen replacement bulb that will provide 100W equivalent performance while using only about 70 watts and will last 3500 hours for around $5.

    I don't know if you think you're making a stand against government, but if you use the rough service bulbs instead of more efficient bulbs, you're costing yourself more money and getting less light than if you just bought an efficient halogen replacement.

    How much more? At 4 hours/day the $2.50 10000 hour Rough Service bulb will last almost 7 years, while you'd need 3 of the 3500 hour $5 halogens to last that long, so you'll end up paying $12.50 more for the bulbs. However, saving 30 watts means 306KWh of energy savings for the Halogen, or around $36 at 12 cents/KWh.

    So, you'll spend over $20 for the privilege of having less light, but you'll have proven why legislation was needed to get people to select bulbs that save them money.

    Or are you going to claim that even halogen incandescents don't provide the same quality of light as conventional incandescents?

  • by dgatwood (11270) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @06:37PM (#45783989) Journal
    Lava lamps use a small, specialty lamp size that is unaffected by this ban, just like refrigerator and stove bulbs. The ban is only on standard-sized, non-long-life incandescent bulbs at specific wattages.
  • Re:bullshit (Score:4, Informative)

    by compro01 (777531) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @06:43PM (#45784017)

    It needs to be big not so much because of the amount of heat, but because the LEDs themselves are rather intolerant of excessive heat.

  • by MightyYar (622222) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @07:08PM (#45784145)

    I don't think you could have sourced a more expensive place for 60-watt replacements. I just bought a 4-pack of CFLs at Home Depot for under $4. And that's the good Phillips brand. The fancy GE enclosed CFLs with the starter halogen inside go for about $5. The Phillips 60W-equivalent LED is $10, with the Cree going for slightly more.

    I'm not arguing that the phase out is a good thing, but let's be realistic about the price drops.

  • by mellon (7048) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @07:19PM (#45784233) Homepage

    It's also worth noting that LEDs last for at least 50k hours. The failure mode is that they get dimmer, not that they fail completely. Whereas that $1 light bulb will last for about 1000 hours. Maybe more, maybe less, depends on the setting and the individual variations in manufacture. So a $1 light bulb is actually quite a bit more expensive than a good-quality LED light bulb. Don't waste your money on the cheap ones. If you're desperate to continue using incandescent, get halogen bulbs—they produce good light and consume about 70% of the power doing it. But we're using Cree bulbs and loving them. The really cheap ones have lousy color rendering, but the Cree bulbs do really well.

  • by eljasbo (671696) * on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @07:27PM (#45784273)
    I bought an adapter to allow the two prong style fixtures to accept a screw-in traditional bulb. look for a gu24 to e26 adapter. I bought some for about $2 each from a huge online retailer. They work great for adapting to the common screw bulbs until the new style is more available.
  • by mellon (7048) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @07:36PM (#45784333) Homepage

    Yup. And you can continue to get industrial incandescents for this application even after the ban.

  • by gweihir (88907) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @07:47PM (#45784401)

    You have no clue. Neither of physics, basic math or economics. And you are completely unaware of that.

    Electricity is by far the most expensive way to generate heat. The other thing is that LED costs something like 15-20% of a classical bulb over its lifetime. If you assume replacement of a classical bulb costs 5 minutes each time including shopping, the bulb costs $2 and keeps 1000h, and you can earn $5 per hour, then classical bulbs costs $240 over the lifetime of a comparable LED bulb. Accident risk on replacement not included. Energy savings not included. Pretty stupid to insist on historic technology under these conditions. But well, we have already established that you are stupid. Please feel free to disgrace yourself further.

  • by robkeeney (1061032) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @08:25PM (#45784603)

    Consider a bulb that is used no more than twice a week for only 3 minutes each time. How long does it take to break even on the increased purchase cost of a CFL or LED over a standard 40W bulb?

    Incandescents are still a better option for a number of applications.

  • by ColdWetDog (752185) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @08:39PM (#45784665) Homepage

    Look up marine wiring [] and the American Boat and Yachting Council wiring regs. Annoying complex but very clear about how to string 12 - 24 volts around in difficult conditions. You will have to get used to a different color code and they've not heard of Anderson Power Poles (wonderful connectors) but applicable to land use as well.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @08:42PM (#45784677)

    You realize there's specialty bulbs for just that purpose, right?
    Thicker glass, heavier filament. A lot less less visible light output but they last *forever*.

  • by mrbcs (737902) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @09:08PM (#45784825)
    Let's see, listen to these lying bastards and buy a "lifetime" bulb for $20. each, OR just use the 30cent bulbs that I've been using for 50 years?

    I bought 96 bulbs for $75. a lifetime supply for me. I have changed exactly 6 bulbs in my bathroom and two in my storage area in 7 years.

    I live in a cold country. I don't care about a trivial power cost. I need the heat. Doesn't matter if it comes from a bulb or natural gas. Shit, I heat with computers sometimes!

    This whole bulb fiasco is a money grab and to bail out dumb governments who didn't plan for electrical growth.

    My province added 150 windmills this year and will add 300 in the coming two years. We have wind, coal and natural gas. Changing a few light bulbs will make very little difference here.

    You can pry my incandescents from my cold dead hands!

  • by jddj (1085169) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @09:08PM (#45784827) Journal
    "LED bulbs are out of this world at Home Depot" Those prices are for 4- and 6-packs. Read your own search result. At between $10 and $12 for a Cree LED bulb at Home Depot, the price is right, and I'm VERY happy with equivalent light output, color temperature and performance with my Z-wave dimmers. No CFL or LED bulb so far has matched them. I've had to return one Cree bulb so far because it shipped with the glass envelope loose. Been perfect otherwise (4 bulbs installed for trial, roughly 6 months in). Full disclosure: I hold 100 shares of CREE. And this is my actual experience using the bulbs in my house.
  • by mellon (7048) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @09:13PM (#45784849) Homepage

    100 watt rough service light bulbs are $1.96/pair at Brutal.

  • by Overzeetop (214511) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @09:22PM (#45784893) Journal

    Um, no. Find me a warranty for 50,000 hours for a reasonable cost. You'll find that most warranties don't extend past 5 years, and those that do typically have a time limit to the hours burned. Ex:

    (from Home Depot)
    Cree: 10 years (5 years for downlights/inverted use)
    EcoSmart: 5 years
    Philips: 6 years, limited to 3 hours/day (6000hours!)
    Sylvania: 3 years @ 4300h/yr or 5yrs @ 2160hr/yr

    Many will claim a lifetime, but will only warrant for a short period. Also realize that these warranties are limited to the life of the lighting subsidiary. For Philips and Sylvania, probably not a worry. For EcoSmart and Cree...will they even be in the residential lamp business (directly) in 5 or 10 years? Will you still even have the receipt? I point this out because I've replaced every single CFL (15) in my home office area in the past 24 months, some of them twice. The manufacturer is no longer in business, the vendor just shrugs - not their problem.

  • by Hamsterdan (815291) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @10:08PM (#45785113)

    Most of the energy output of an incandescent is *not* light (about only 5% is light). []

    So at present time in Montreal (-20C), my incandescent lighting is not wasting that much energy...

  • by Waffle Iron (339739) on Thursday December 26, 2013 @01:01AM (#45785935)

    They're not equivalent at all.

    One reason the resistive heat costs 3X the gas heat is because they have to burn about 3X the amount of fuel to actually get the same amount of energy into your house via electrons. A heat pump takes advantage of thermodynamics to reverse that 3X penalty and achieve approximate parity with gas; someobdy who thinks that a light bulb is a good way to heat their house just pays the penalty. As they say, a fool and his money are soon parted.

  • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot AT hackish DOT org> on Thursday December 26, 2013 @01:59AM (#45786143)

    If you want a yellow CFL or LED, you can buy one. They're labeled with color temperature nowadays; just buy the color temp you prefer. 6500K or "daylight" gives you essentially white light (which indoors often perceptually comes across as blue-ish or harsh), lower color temps give progressively more yellow colors. About 2700K or so, also marketed as "warm white" or "soft white", will give roughly the same yellowish color as an incandescent.

  • by Miamicanes (730264) on Thursday December 26, 2013 @02:13AM (#45786183)

    > LEDs are cheaper

    Unless you're talking about outdoor light fixtures in Florida... where the atmosphere is maybe two or three steps less-corrosive than the atmosphere of Venus insofar as light bulbs with active electronics are concerned. LED and CFL bulbs in a porch light have a lifespan measured in MONTHS here.

    It's not even the endless rain per se... it's the dew that condenses inside the bulb just about every night/morning. People who've never lived in South Florida just don't "get" how quickly and completely stuff here gets destroyed when it's left directly exposed to outdoor air, even in a sheltered location that doesn't get directly exposed to actual rain.

  • Re:please explain. (Score:4, Informative)

    by bruce_the_loon (856617) on Thursday December 26, 2013 @03:49AM (#45786417) Homepage

    Pure physics-wise, you are correct. Heating the same volume the same amount requires the same amount of heat energy. The difference is the source of the heat energy.

    A resistive heater produces the heat by consuming electrical power only, 3400 BTU/hr generated heat requires a bit over 4.2A of 220V electricity to flow through the resistive element. (specs from a Radiant Cove heater unit)

    A quick intro to the refrigeration cycle can be found here [].

    A heat pump is the same as an air conditioner or fridge, just installed with the condensor inside the building and the evaporator outside. The primary heat source is the outside air and the only power is that needed to power the compressor unit to move the working fluid through the cycle. The smallest Fujitsu unit generates 11000 BTU/hr using 3.7A at 220V.

    Basically the answer is the same amount of energy is needed for the same heating, but the heat pump uses a different source and an efficient process to produce the heat than a resistive load does.

  • by qazsedcft (911254) on Thursday December 26, 2013 @04:40AM (#45786575)

    The average incandescent bulb lasts about 1000 hours. Currently, the average cost per kilowatt hour is 12 cents in this country. So a 100 watt bulb run for 1000 hours costs about $1.20 in electricity. The bulbs cost about $0.57 each. An equivalent LED bulb costs $36 per, and consumes only 13% of the energy used by an incandescent. They say these will last approximately 50,000 hours.

    Except your math is off by a factor of 10. 100 watt is 0.1 kW, times 1000 hours gives 100 kWh, which is $12 dollars of electricity not $1.20. That changes pretty much everything.

    I agree about the toxic waste stuff, but if you're worried mostly about energy (and that's what policy mostly focuses on) then incandescents don't make sense.

  • by MrLogic17 (233498) on Thursday December 26, 2013 @09:01AM (#45787095) Journal

    I happen to work in the utility industry. Power for lighting both commercial and residential is low single-digit percentage. (Incidentally this is also why daylight saving time is a colossal mistake.)

    The incandescent lightbulb ban is just a show. It's political theater. There are dozens of ways to save more power with more bang for the buck.

There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman? -- Woody Allen