Friday, November 11, 2005

Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFL)

Only five percent of the energy that goes into a typical incandescent bulb comes out as light. The remaining 95 percent becomes heat. So, instead of calling this a light, we should really call it a heater.

Compact fluorescent lights are four times more efficient and last up to ten times longer than incandescents. Now, you can buy a high quality compact fluorescent light (CFL) at local stores for as little as $5.

Important Things To Remember About Compact Fluorescent Lamps

Compact Fluorescents are very efficient, economical light sources
A Compact Fluorescent (CF) uses only about a quarter as much electric power as an incandescent lamp with the same light output. A 22 Watt CF has about the same light output as a 100 Watt incandescent; an 18 Watt CF is equivalent to a 75 Watt incandescent.

Compact Fluorescents outlast incandescents 10 to 1
The average incandescent bulb is rated to last about 1000 hours, (about 6 months at 5 hours/day). CF’s are rated for about 10,000 hours, (about 5.5 years at 5 hours/day).

Compact Fluorescents have great color rendition and won’t flicker or hum
CF’s use rare earth phosphors for excellent color and warmth. New electronically ballasted fluorescent lamps don’t flicker or hum.

Don’t let the purchase price of a compact fluorescent scare you
Over the 10,000 hour rated life of a 28 Watt compact fluorescent, it may cost $10 to purchase, and $20 to operate, for a total cost of $30. The equivalent ten standard incandescent lamps will cost $7.50 to purchase, and $72 to operate, for a total cost of $92. You stand to save $20 by buying the “more expensive” CF! Take a look at the costs of a reflector type bulb; a 21 Watt reflector CF will set you back $15 at purchase, and cost $15 to operate, for a total cost of $30. The equivalent nine 75 Watt incandescent reflector lamps will cost $49.50 to purchase, and $54 to operate, for a total cost of $93.50. The CF reflector lamp saves you $63.50.

Using Compact Fluorescents Reduces Air and Water Pollution
Using an 18 Watt CF instead of a 60 Watt incandescent lamp will keep out the air a ton of carbon dioxide (the global warming gas), twenty pounds of sulfur oxides (which cause acid rain), and smaller amounts of other gases and heavy metals. If everyone in the United States used economical, energy efficient lighting, we could retire around 90 average size power plants, saving 232 million tons of carbon dioxide, 1.7 million tons of sulfur oxides, and 194 tons of high-level nuclear waste by the year 2000. And we can save money at the same time!


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