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Common Myths About Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFL) September 30, 2010

Posted by bowmanlamps in compact fluorescent, dimmable CFL, lighting.
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Compact Fluorescent Lamps or Light Bulbs (CFL) are generally known to use 75 percent less energy and last 10 times longer than standard incandescent light bulbs. So why isn’t everybody interested in saving money and the planet using them?  We think the answer is simple misinformation. So let’s take a look at several myths surrounding CFLs.

CFLS flicker and give off inferior light:  Not true!  A lot of progress has been made in this area. Today,  an Energy Star qualified light gives off the same amount of pleasing light as its incandescent eqivalent. And ballast technology has made “instant on” and “flicker free” a reality.

CFLs don’t fit my fixtures: Not true! Not only have CFL light bulbs been decreasing in size, they are now available for many special applications, like dimming, 3-way,  flood lights, candelabra, and more.

CFLs are expensive: Not true! While CFLs do cost more to purchase than incandescents, they pay for themselves in reduced energy costs.  An average CFL saves about $30 in energy costs over its lifetime.

CFLs are difficult to find: Not true! You can find standard CFLs at just about any hardware, grocery, or discount store.  And, there are many additional CFL options online. How about an odor eliminating compact fluorescent light bulb?

CFLs give off large amounts of harmful UV light: Not true! While a small amount of UV light is given off, it only poses a problem for individuals who already suffer from rare skin conditions which make them extremely sensitive to light.  

CFLs are hazardous: Not true! CFLs do contain a trace amount of mercury.  However, it is less than what you would find in a tuna fish sandwich.  The mercury is contained within the CFL, and it is not emitted during use.  Since  CFLs contain a small amount of mercury, the EPA provides simple guidelines for clean-up and disposal. Recycling burned out CFLs ensures that the mercury does not get into the environment. Many stores – including Home Depot – and communities offer compact fluorescent recycling. In addition, in areas where coal-fired power plants are used, CFLs reduce the amount of mercury and other pollutants entering the environment. Simply put, using less energy – which CFLs allow us to do – results in less pollution.

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