Reminder: That incandescent light bulb ban was not a good idea

posted at 6:41 pm on March 22, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

Why? Not merely because government directives might forcibly funnel consumer demand, investment, and R&D toward a product that really isn’t ready for mass consumption, but also because, no matter how great their intentions might be, the free market is always better than politicians at picking efficient solutions. The free market’s only bias is in appealing to people’s rational self-interest; i.e., if people figure out that Product A is more expensive or of lower quality than comparable substitute Product B, people will buy Product B.

In this case, the compact fluorescent bulbs politically favored by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 encountered a lot of resistance because CFLs are impractical, more expensive, and it turns out they might actually be a cancer risk, no big deal or anything. But if the goal is to get people to buy bulbs that use electricity more efficiently, government mandates aren’t nearly as effective as a product that can actually make those electricity savings more pragmatic, more affordable, and more worthwhile, and the market is happy to provide. Via the NYT:

You’ve probably seen LED flashlights, the LED “flash” on phone cameras and LED indicator lights on electronics. But LED bulbs, for use in the lamps and light sockets of your home, have been slow to arrive, mainly because of their high price…

That’s a pity, because LED bulbs are a gigantic improvement over incandescent bulbs and even the compact fluorescents, or CFLs, that the world spent several years telling us to buy.

LEDs last about 25 times as long as incandescents and three times as long as CFLs; we’re talking maybe 25,000 hours of light. Install one today, and you may not own your house, or even live, long enough to see it burn out. …

You know how hot incandescent bulbs become. That’s because they convert only 5 to 10 percent of your electricity into light; they waste the rest as heat. LED bulbs are far more efficient. They convert 60 percent of their electricity into light, so they consume far less electricity. …

As the NYT review goes on to point out, there are now LED bulbs out there that cost as little as $10 — pretty darn affordable for a bulb that both turns on instantly and keeps on keepin’ on like the Energizer Bunny. If these bulbs really are everything they’re cracked up to be, they’ll catch on — no government mandates necessary.


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Comment pages: 1 2

The heat from the incandescent bulbs comes in handy. The 60 watt bulbs on either side of my bathroom mirror can keep it from fogging up, if I turn them on a little ahead of time.

backwoods conservative on March 22, 2013 at 6:50 PM

That phonograph wasn’t a good idea either but I don’t expect to have to ask the Federal Regime’s permission whenever I care to listen to a few records whenever I get nostalgic for the days when Ronaldus Magnus was president and the concept of limited government was intact.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 6:50 PM

Light me up Scotty!

Scrumpy on March 22, 2013 at 6:50 PM

The LEDbulbs currently available that you would use in your lamps or to provide adequate illumination in places where you really need it cost $20 -$30 minimum.

Even if the cost were $10 for those bulbs, why spend that kind of money on one bulb when you can buy 100 incandescent clubs for the same money?

catmman on March 22, 2013 at 6:52 PM

If I can’t buy incandescent, I will by LED. CFLs are banned from my house.

Mutnodjmet on March 22, 2013 at 6:53 PM

I would like to see Al Gore sit on one of those screw shaped compact fluorescent bulbs and spin on it. Is there any replacement bulbs for ceiling fans or garage doors that provide durable efficient economic light besides the old Edison based incandescent bulbs.

fourdeucer on March 22, 2013 at 6:54 PM

@catmann: you are ignoring the cost of electricity. Total cost of ownership, bulb plus electricity, for an LED is significantly lower.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 6:57 PM

They don’t work very well as traffic lights in northern climates. That HEAT is what melts accumulated snow so that you can SEE the traffic signal.

One size DOES NOT fit all situations.

GarandFan on March 22, 2013 at 6:58 PM

Even if the cost were $10 for those bulbs, why spend that kind of money on one bulb when you can buy 100 incandescent clubs for the same money?

catmman on March 22, 2013 at 6:52 PM

Because GE’s Jeff Immelt is a major contributor to the Obongo Regime?

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:00 PM

Any and every CFL I must dispose of is going into the trash can/dumpster. In 30 years, the mutant children can take it up with Congress.

Jeddite on March 22, 2013 at 7:02 PM

The heat from the incandescent bulbs comes in handy. The 60 watt bulbs on either side of my bathroom mirror can keep it from fogging up, if I turn them on a little ahead of time.

backwoods conservative on March 22, 2013 at 6:50 PM

The original Easy-Bake Oven (1963) used 2 100 watt light bulbs as its heat source. As late as just 2 years ago, one of the EB models still used (1) 100 watter.

Del Dolemonte on March 22, 2013 at 7:03 PM

“… no matter how great their intentions might be, the free market is always better than politicians at picking efficient solutions.”

Don’t forget to mention the liberal ideology of those politicians and the man made global warming hoax that their intentions were based upon…

Seven Percent Solution on March 22, 2013 at 7:04 PM

I can buy a box of 16 60 watt incandescent bulbs for $3.75. Need I say more.

Dasher on March 22, 2013 at 7:05 PM

I use CFLs in exactly one place in my house. My office overhead fixture isn’t bright enough with incandescent a if I respect the wattage limit (and since I don’t like house fires, I do). I can put significantly brighter CFLs in that fixture and get more brightness and cooler operation. It’s not as much of an electricity savings in that case but I don’t care. Incandescent a are genuinely inferior in that case.

But the new Cree LED bulbs at Home Depot look good. They might genuinely work well in some of my other fixtures. I agree that the CFL mandates are dumb—but precisely because alternatives like LED were on the horizon.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:05 PM

@Dasher: yes, actually, you do. How much do you pay for the electricity for that box of bulbs? Geez, people, math ain’t hard.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:06 PM

I have CFL’s through my entire house because of installing recessed lighting. Incandescent bulbs trip the thermistor’s (heat) so I had to change. I saw no savings in power and they burn out as fast as incandescent as far as I can tell.

CW20 on March 22, 2013 at 7:08 PM

. . . . . . . . because, no matter how great their intentions might be, the free market is always better than politicians at picking efficient solutions. The free market’s only bias is in appealing to people’s rational self-interest; i.e., if people figure out that Product A is more expensive or of lower quality than comparable substitute Product B, people will buy Product B.

excerpt: Erika Johnsen

.
The people behind the “incandescent light bulb ban” aren’t the least bit interested in efficiency, OR the environment.

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:10 PM

Look, people, as I said, I am running exactly one fixture with CFL’s right now. I am no advocate. But LEDs are going to save you significant amounts of money in the long run. CFLs usually will too but they are less reliable and have other issues. To say “incandescent are cheaper” is simply not the case. Cheaper to buy, sure, but significantly more expensive to use.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:10 PM

Any and every CFL I must dispose of is going into the trash can/dumpster. In 30 years, the mutant children can take it up with Congress.

Jeddite on March 22, 2013 at 7:02 PM

…the mercury and danger inherent in those is alarming…and all you hear is crickets

KOOLAID2 on March 22, 2013 at 7:11 PM

60 watts for 4 hours a day = 0.06 * 4 = .24 KWH = 2¢ a day. Yikes I better unplug my refrigerator and my computer and save the world.

Dasher on March 22, 2013 at 7:12 PM

Yep, and it’s still a good idea to repeal it altogether, that is, if anyone in Congress remembers and/or cares. I have my doubts.

PatriotGal2257 on March 22, 2013 at 7:13 PM

We have at least a thousand or more incandescents tucked away in a safe place. And i keep buying them a little at a time. Several people I know have done the same thing.

I also have a few friends who have had CFL’s catch fire in their homes. One friend’s grandmother had just put a CFL in a lamp and it caught fire within days.

And we have Bush to thank for this.

JellyToast on March 22, 2013 at 7:13 PM

Dasher: 2c a day is $7 a year. Per bulb.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:15 PM

Even if the cost were $10 for those bulbs, why spend that kind of money on one bulb when you can buy 100 incandescent clubs for the same money?

catmman
on March 22, 2013 at 6:52 PM

.
Because GE’s Jeff Immelt is a major contributor to the Obongo Regime?

viking01
on March 22, 2013 at 7:00 PM

.
I don’t believe Jeff Immelt wanted the “incandescent ban”. GE made plenty of money off of manufacturing incandescent bulbs.

But there’s still plenty of other things he could be in trouble over.

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:15 PM

Stocked up on the old bulbs while the getting was good.

Also more nonsense here in the Twin Cities:

Earth Hour is slated for 8:30 p.m. Saturday, March 23, and the city is urging residents and businesses to join local government in turning off their lights for an hour in an effort to promote energy conservation.

I’ll be firing up every damn incandescent bulb in the house tomorrow night.

Illumination as a Revolutionary Activity!

Bruno Strozek on March 22, 2013 at 7:15 PM

Just another incompetent move, by a bunch of incompetent legislators that try to legislate every move we make. The sooner we clean out that rat’s nest, the better. The Republic is already showing some cracks.

ultracon on March 22, 2013 at 7:16 PM

I have CFL’s through my entire house because of installing recessed lighting. Incandescent bulbs trip the thermistor’s (heat) so I had to change. I saw no savings in power and they burn out as fast as incandescent as far as I can tell.

CW20 on March 22, 2013 at 7:08 PM

One of the big problems with CFL’s, when mounted base up they over heat the electronics and that burns them out. I have a GE 13W CFL that shot out flames from the side. And it was mounted base down. Which should be better heat wise.

I also hate the warm up time of them. Tried a R-30 CFL for a ceiling light. That was a big mistake. Switched back to incandescent after a couple days of that nonsense.

Dasher on March 22, 2013 at 7:20 PM

@Dasher: yes, actually, you do. How much do you pay for the electricity for that box of bulbs? Geez, people, math ain’t hard.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:06 PM

If he’s renting and the owner pays the electricity (which is frequently the case even here in Los Angeles), his cost is zero for the electricity — it’s already included in his rent.

Now, if he’s altruistic, he’ll return that box of 16 60 watt bulbs for $3.75 and instead go to Home Depot and buy 16 60 watt equivalent dimmable LED bulbs for only $394.64

Notice the decimal point? It’s important.

unclesmrgol on March 22, 2013 at 7:21 PM

How much do you pay for electricity? The average consumer pays 12 cents a kWh. A 60-watt bulb left on an average of 4 hours a day burns $10.50 a year of electricity. You’ll probably use about 2 bulbs over that time period, but the bulb cost isn’t the driver there.

In contrast, a 9.5W Cree bulb costs you about $1.65 per year to run in the same schedule. It’s actually got a 10 year warranty (and that assumes 6 hours a day, not 4). Even if you pay $10 for the bulb you’re going to save money.

And that’s just one bulb.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

I don’t believe Jeff Immelt wanted the “incandescent ban”. GE made plenty of money off of manufacturing incandescent bulbs.

But there’s still plenty of other things he could be in trouble over.

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:15 PM

Problem is, Immelt is an big on Lefty causes, the Manhattan (Nanny Bloomberg) scene and an Ogabe loving activist playing with OPM. I’m sure a day doesn’t go by when Jack Welch doesn’t regret letting Immelt take over at GE.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

Well sure, if your electricity is free, incandescents are a no brainer.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:23 PM

I will wait until an LED bulb is as cheap as incandescents before I buy one. Until then I have hoarded enough 100/75/60 watt bulbs to last a lifetime. So the gov can pound sand as far as I’m concerned.

trapeze on March 22, 2013 at 7:26 PM

I promise I’m not in the business or anything ;) But I’ve been doing the math on these Cree LEDs since I saw them. They’re the first alternative bulb tech I have been willing to consider for general use. They really do look promising, so I’m just a little enthusiastic. And maybe I figure if a few others buy them too they’re more likely to stay in business with those warranty replacements ;)

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:28 PM

And if I remember correctly, the “rough service” incandescent bulbs are not included in the ban so you can always get those. They cost more than standard incandescents but if you have to have one and didn’t stock up you do have a solution to that problem.

trapeze on March 22, 2013 at 7:32 PM

How much do you pay for electricity? The average consumer pays 12 cents a kWh. A 60-watt bulb left on an average of 4 hours a day burns $10.50 a year of electricity. You’ll probably use about 2 bulbs over that time period, but the bulb cost isn’t the driver there.

In contrast, a 9.5W Cree bulb costs you about $1.65 per year to run in the same schedule. It’s actually got a 10 year warranty (and that assumes 6 hours a day, not 4). Even if you pay $10 for the bulb you’re going to save money.

And that’s just one bulb.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

I’m sure “Cree” appreciates your free ad here but if someone wants to buy steak instead of hamburger it really isn’t any of your business.

It may annoy you that others may wish to enjoy life by other than your rules so if you often hear the words “shove it” you’ll now know why.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:36 PM

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:15 PM

.
Problem is, Immelt is an big on Lefty causes, the Manhattan (Nanny Bloomberg) scene and an Ogabe loving activist playing with OPM. I’m sure a day doesn’t go by when Jack Welch doesn’t regret letting Immelt take over at GE.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

.
I know, … I know ………. a day doesn’t go by that most of us don’t regret that. : (

But the real “driving force” behind the “incandescent ban”, was somebody outside our country.

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:37 PM

And I don’t care what the math is on cost/savings. The issue is freedom and liberty. The federal government has absolutely no business banning a light bulb. I don’t need a central planner in charge of my life.

trapeze on March 22, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Are you talking about those 130V bulbs? We have those flood fixtures in our kitchen (BR40, I think) and those suckers burn out all the time. So I bought some commercial bulbs, and wouldn’t you know it we had some power surges during a bad storm and knocked a couple out. Not a knock on incandescents, mind you, I don’t know if CFL or LED would have survived any better.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:39 PM

The heat component of lighting…..
I am reminded that back about 50-years ago, when the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power opened their showcase HQ in Downtown, they pointed out that the building did not require any heating system, but only A/C, as the heat thrown off by the bodies of the people working there, and the lights used to light the work spaces, kept the building at a comfortable temperature on even the coldest day in L.A., and they only had to concern themselves with cooling the building during the hottest days. In fact, the lights were left on 24-hrs a day (or at least some of them) – it was a signature building in the Downtown sky-line of the day as it was illuminated all night, every night.

Another Drew on March 22, 2013 at 7:41 PM

I hear the nanny-staters, in their infinite wisdom, are now planning to make us watch football games at stadiums by LED flashlight.

It’s cost effective and practical; they swear….

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:47 PM

How much do you pay for electricity? The average consumer pays 12 cents a kWh. A 60-watt bulb left on an average of 4 hours a day burns $10.50 a year of electricity. You’ll probably use about 2 bulbs over that time period, but the bulb cost isn’t the driver there.

In contrast, a 9.5W Cree bulb costs you about $1.65 per year to run in the same schedule. It’s actually got a 10 year warranty (and that assumes 6 hours a day, not 4). Even if you pay $10 for the bulb you’re going to save money.

And that’s just one bulb.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

.
Does the Cree bulb use a ballast?

If so, is there a minimum temperature that they won’t work below?

Or a maximum temperature that they won’t work above?

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:48 PM

The irritating douchebaggery of the green zealots notwithstanding, I actually do use CFLs in my house for a couple of reasons, both of which boil down to money. My electrical system does this weird micro-surge thing that blows out incandescents on average every couple of months (it’s a breaker box issue, not one to be terribly concerned about in regards to fire dangers, and just strong enough to blow out bulbs; nothing else even notices). CFLs are the only bulbs that last, and they eat less electricity into the bargain. Now that I can afford them, I will likely invest in LED models, but at the time I bought the CFLs I was still a poor, unemployed college student.

Militant Bibliophile on March 22, 2013 at 7:49 PM

How much do you pay for electricity? The average consumer pays 12 cents a kWh. A 60-watt bulb left on an average of 4 hours a day burns $10.50 a year of electricity. You’ll probably use about 2 bulbs over that time period, but the bulb cost isn’t the driver there.

In contrast, a 9.5W Cree bulb costs you about $1.65 per year to run in the same schedule. It’s actually got a 10 year warranty (and that assumes 6 hours a day, not 4). Even if you pay $10 for the bulb you’re going to save money.

And that’s just one bulb.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

Good info, however, you are missing the point!

One should have the FREEDOM to purchase what one wants to use.
No government should have the power to force people to purchase
a particular type of lightbulb.

It is a matter of choice, not price.

I drive a more expensive car because I want to even tho I know a Chevy Volt would be cheaper (that one catches on fire also).

Amjean on March 22, 2013 at 7:50 PM

I hear the nanny-staters, in their infinite wisdom, are now planning to make us watch football games at stadiums by LED flashlight.

It’s cost effective and practical; they swear….

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:47 PM

.
I believe that would make all of us “swear”, too!

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:50 PM

Sure, if you design your building’s HVAC with the assumption of incandescent heat you’ll need less heat and more A/C. Here in Texas that’s not my preferred trade. ;) In warmer climates it makes sense, unless gas heating is cheaper.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:50 PM

Duh. In *colder* climates it makes sense, sorry.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:51 PM

The original Easy-Bake Oven (1963) used 2 100 watt light bulbs as its heat source. As late as just 2 years ago, one of the EB models still used (1) 100 watter.

Del Dolemonte on March 22, 2013 at 7:03 PM

The new LED based EB Oven with the 12W LED bulb now takes 4 weeks to bake your child’s cake.
/s

OccamsRazor on March 22, 2013 at 7:51 PM

How much do you pay for electricity? The average consumer pays 12 cents a kWh. A 60-watt bulb left on an average of 4 hours a day burns $10.50 a year of electricity. You’ll probably use about 2 bulbs over that time period, but the bulb cost isn’t the driver there.

In contrast, a 9.5W Cree bulb costs you about $1.65 per year to run in the same schedule. It’s actually got a 10 year warranty (and that assumes 6 hours a day, not 4). Even if you pay $10 for the bulb you’re going to save money.

And that’s just one bulb.

mcg

If I ever have to worry about spending $0.80 a month, light bulbs will be the least of my problems.

xblade on March 22, 2013 at 7:55 PM

Duh. In *colder* climates it makes sense, sorry.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:51 PM

.
that only makes sense IF the individual LEDs were arranged in series, as a resistive load.

If it uses a ballast (inductive load) to start, then I challenge that.

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:55 PM

If I can’t buy incandescent, I will by LED. CFLs are banned from my house.

Mutnodjmet on March 22, 2013 at 6:53 PM

You know those CFL bulbs are the same thing as the bulbs lighting pretty much every commercial, industrial, and office building in America.

Just saying.

Spliff Menendez on March 22, 2013 at 7:56 PM

And I don’t care what the math is on cost/savings. The issue is freedom and liberty. The federal government has absolutely no business banning a light bulb. I don’t need a central planner in charge of my life.

trapeze on March 22, 2013 at 7:37 PM

THIS!

BacaDog on March 22, 2013 at 7:56 PM

I hear the nanny-staters, in their infinite wisdom, are now planning to make us watch football games at stadiums by LED flashlight.

It’s cost effective and practical; they swear….

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:47 PM

.
I believe that would make all of us “swear”, too!

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:50 PM

Poor LED stadium illumination likely would cause an increase in concussions so now our Marxist control freaks really are in a dilemma.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:57 PM

It is the one year anniversary of Obama saying he was nervous about the beautiful weather in the midwest. Someone should ask if he’s still nervous. It’s cold and miserable.

Buddahpundit on March 22, 2013 at 7:59 PM

And of course there is also the 1.6 gal toilet that Congress also had no business mandating.

Dasher on March 22, 2013 at 8:03 PM

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

.
I drive a more expensive car because I want to even tho I know a Chevy Volt would be cheaper (that one catches on fire also).

Amjean on March 22, 2013 at 7:50 PM

.
Obviously you don’t care about the environment, as much as mcg does.

You’re sacrificing it, to drive a car that’s “less likely” to catch on fire.
American consumers are sooo demanding.

AIN’T THAT RIGHT, mcg ? ! !

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 8:03 PM

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:50 PM

.
Poor LED stadium illumination likely would cause an increase in concussions so now our Marxist control freaks really are in a dilemma.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:57 PM

.
SHHH ……….. not so loud.

They’re already trying to abolish NFL football, and that’s just one more excuse.

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 8:06 PM

I hear the nanny-staters, in their infinite wisdom, are now planning to make us watch football games at stadiums by LED flashlight.

It’s cost effective and practical; they swear….

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:47 PM

.

I believe that would make all of us “swear”, too!

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:50 PM

Poor LED stadium illumination likely would cause an increase in concussions so now our Marxist control freaks really are in a dilemma.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 7:57 PM

Wait — Have LED lights mounted in the helmets of the players. As a side benefit, the receivers could have a switch to turn the LEDs green when they are open or red when they are covered.

Dasher on March 22, 2013 at 8:06 PM

I’ve been using both incandescents and CFLs for a while. I used CFLs because it let me put a brighter bulb in places than the fixture was rated for. So when I had a fixture rated for 60 watts, I could put in a 26 watt CFL and have the equivalent light of 100 watts. Most of those were double fixtures, so I could go from 120 watts with an incandescent to the equivalent of 200 watts for only 52 watts.

Plus, sometimes incandescent bulbs just don’t seem to last very long.

What I found out, was that the longer life promised for CFLs is only true if you never turn the bulb off. In normal usage, CFLs cost quite a bit more than regular bulbs, and only had maybe double the life.

I’m looking forward to LEDs, not because they save energy, but because their life isn’t shortened when you turn them on and off. This is UNLIKE both incandescent and CFL bulbs, whose life is shortened more by being turned off and on than by the amount of time they burn.

There Goes The Neighborhood on March 22, 2013 at 8:10 PM

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:06 PM

Talk about a busy body. Why is it any of your business what he decides to pay in terms of electricity to have the bulbs he wants?

chemman on March 22, 2013 at 8:12 PM

Fred Flintstone’s car got infinite miles to the gallon.

I’m not so sure I want King Barky (who managed to put the presidential limo on cinder blocks after all) mandating those.

viking01 on March 22, 2013 at 8:12 PM

Spliff Menendez on March 22, 2013 at 7:56 PM

There is a difference. Industry made the choice to use them. Government is trying to mandate us in using them.

chemman on March 22, 2013 at 8:16 PM

This is like the gasoline additive MTBE that the EPA demanded be included in the formulation of domestic blends, even after the states showed evidence that it was seeping into the ground water. The fact that it was carcinogen didn’t seem to bother the EPA.

J_Crater on March 22, 2013 at 8:32 PM

In contrast, a 9.5W Cree bulb costs you about $1.65 per year to run in the same schedule. It’s actually got a 10 year warranty (and that assumes 6 hours a day, not 4). Even if you pay $10 for the bulb you’re going to save money.

And that’s just one bulb.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

Given the costs of LEDs here ($13 per 60w), running the numbers its about even, LED costing maybe $1 more a year, assuming the incandescent break twice per year. I have a few ceiling light fixtures that I don’t trust, I might try an LED in one of them but those things burn through bulbs like crazy. I run one CFL in my main living room floor lamp light and its been good so far. The warm up time for it is annoying though.

Its rather nice having competing technologies, seems to drive prices down. Funny thing that free market stuff. Perhaps the gov ought to get out of the medical market? Might make things cheaper. Nah… ;)

oryguncon on March 22, 2013 at 8:33 PM

And of course there is also the 1.6 gal toilet that Congress also had no business mandating.

Dasher on March 22, 2013 at 8:03 PM

They don’t poop so they don’t understand.

Spliff Menendez on March 22, 2013 at 8:39 PM

I recall the centrally planned economy of the old USSR : they had tons of cars needing engines but none were available but they had a lot of tractor engines laying around wiith no tractors to put them into–or something of that sort. Wait, you’ll see what I mean at a future hospital visit.

Don L on March 22, 2013 at 8:45 PM

There is a difference. Industry made the choice to use them. Government is trying to mandate us in using them.

chemman on March 22, 2013 at 8:16 PM

If you are anti-cfl simply because govt can suck it then I have no problem with that. But people like Erika here pushing this cancer nonsense kills me when the majority of us spend a lot of time around fluorescent light bulbs. They just aren’t compact.

Spliff Menendez on March 22, 2013 at 8:47 PM

Not to mention I have yet to see my choice of bulbs limited in anyway at the local Home Depot. But the choices have expanded quite a bit.

Spliff Menendez on March 22, 2013 at 8:49 PM

I bought a couple of LED bulbs and they are really nice. But the $10 ones the NYT is talking about are cheap Chinese junk, like most of the CFLs you buy that don’t even last a year. I bought good Philips bulbs with good output and color that will last, but they’re $40 each, which will buy a LOT of incandescent bulbs. Like electric vehicles, they’re fun to play around with if you’ve got extra money, but they’re not competitive yet. On technical issues, the NYT is way down on the list of sources I’d consider authoritative. (And on most other issues, too. Maybe book reviews. Maybe.)

Socratease on March 22, 2013 at 8:55 PM

.
Does the Cree bulb use a ballast?

If so, is there a minimum temperature that they won’t work below?

Or a maximum temperature that they won’t work above?

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:48 PM

Cree makes the LED modules for Surefire weapon lights and flashlights (and for a lot of other brands, too), and there doesn’t seem to be a min/max temperature cutoff for them.

Solaratov on March 22, 2013 at 9:07 PM

If these bulbs really are everything they’re cracked up to be, they’ll catch on — no government mandates necessary.

Absolutely. LED’s are much better than they used to be. Some now have the same warm color (2700K) as the old bulbs, using a fraction of the energy. But you still need to shop to find the color you want, as most are still too blue/cold. And the light from the blue/cold ones sucks.

I switched a year ago. Now my electric bill is half, and I leave many of them on 24/7 in winter.

petefrt on March 22, 2013 at 9:22 PM

LED lights don’t use a “ballast” but they do need electronics to control the current through the LED. (LEDs are PN junction devices and almost impossible to control by voltage; you control them by current.) The control is exercised by a switching supply. These can be very efficient but can throw harmonics–multiples of the powerline frequency–back down the power lines. Reducing the harmonics means either allowing a 120 Hz flicker or using large capacitors that tend to be the life-limiting components of electronics. I don’t know exactly how they are designed.

njcommuter on March 22, 2013 at 9:33 PM

Oh for goodness sake. A guy goes off for dinner, comes back to discover he is accuses of being an enviroweenie, anti-choice, or a Cree shill. I am none of those things, and if read the totality of my posts in this thread you know that very well.

Buy whatever damn bulbs you want! Just don’t claim it is *cheaper* to use incandescents, at least in the standard bulb application. That is simply factually, objectively incorrect, unless you are one of the rare few that does not pay his own electric bill.

I have 2 CFLs in my entire house, and I have not yet bought the LEDs. I am intrigued, because they *will* save me money, and I won’t have to get the ladder out as often, and they finally look like normal bulbs. That’s it.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 9:42 PM

I think this whole rule to get rid of the incandescent light bulb was just an excuse to raise prices on all of us. All the replacement bulbs, whether LED or CFL, cost a lot more than the incandescent light bulbs. I have stocked up on incandescents for quite a while so I won’t run out any time soon. I will continue to stock up until none are sold any more.

My husband is retired military. There are many families like ours that move every 2-3 years. Why would anyone who moves frequently want to spend a lot of money for light bulbs that will just be left behind? That is assuming the light bulbs actually last that long. The couple of CFL bulbs my husband brought home didn’t last much longer than the incandescent bulbs we had. I don’t want anything containing mercury that might break around my house because we have children and pets

sherrimae on March 22, 2013 at 9:43 PM

Because it takes less than 2-3 years for the electricity savings to pay for the bulb and then some. And if it’s an LED, take ‘me with you!

This is what I am talking about. The mercury argument? I’m with you. The “tired of government pushing me around argument”? AOK. The “cheaper argument”? That stopped being true a long time ago, and the difference will only get larger as LED continues to drop in price.

Pay more by all means, but call it what it is.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 9:56 PM

I have LED, CFL’s and incadescent in my house. I won’t buy anymore CFLs but, the LED’s are still kinda pricy. I’ll proably break down and get LED’s but, I’m not convinced on the expected life span. I had one that only lasted 6 weeks and it was a $25 bulb. No warranty and no refund. If they are going to charge that for a bulb they had better get better.

boomer on March 22, 2013 at 10:00 PM

in the winter (maine gets cold) the incandescents used to help heat the house lowering my oil and furnace electricity usage.
I used to run cfl in summer and those in winter.
now I get to run furnace more.
thanks dumbasses.

dmacleo on March 22, 2013 at 10:07 PM

Fair point. The Cree has a 10-year warranty but I want to be sure they are around to honor it. I related earlier about buying those 130V commercial floods (incandescents) at a premium, only to lose a couple in a storm. And I have bought incandescents that were bad out of the box. That is indeed a hazard when the up-front cost is higher.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 10:08 PM

Does Maine have an anti-incandescent law? I got out of California and returned to Texas before theirs kicked in.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 10:10 PM

not sure if maine has the law specifically but I cannot find incandescents in stores now.
and my fixtures are candlera so they were already somewhat hard to find before the fed law kicked in

dmacleo on March 22, 2013 at 10:12 PM

Never mind, I forgot about the national bans. I don’t use a lot of 100w and 75w bulbs here. grr.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 10:13 PM

What about the cancer risk. All cfls leak radiation. If the cost of energy for a light bulb is your biggest problem then I don’t know what to tell you.

2012chuck on March 22, 2013 at 10:17 PM

Does the Cree bulb use a ballast?

If so, is there a minimum temperature that they won’t work below?

Or a maximum temperature that they won’t work above?

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 7:48 PM

.
Cree makes the LED modules for Surefire weapon lights and flashlights (and for a lot of other brands, too), and there doesn’t seem to be a min/max temperature cutoff for them.

Solaratov on March 22, 2013 at 9:07 PM

.
Any battery powered device with LEDs should be a “non-ballast” type. No problem in cold extremes, even inside the Arctic and Antarctic circles.
But the majority (at this time) of LED “bulbs” for residential lighting (120v AC) use a ballast.
The issue came up in reference to ‘dimmer switches’ being used with LED lights. The man behind the counter of the electrical wholesale supplier, stated that there was a “degree of control” that could be achieved with ‘dimmer switches’, but they can’t dim down as much as incandescent bulbs, because they’ll go completely “dark” past a certain point with the dimmer switch.
This all has to do with the ballast being an “inductive load”, between the LEDs and the “variable resister/voltage control” (the dimmer switch).

As technology advances, that to will eventually be overcome.

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 10:27 PM

But you still need to shop to find the color you want, as most are still too blue/cold. And the light from the blue/cold ones sucks.

petefrt on March 22, 2013 at 9:22 PM

.
Ain’t that the truth . . . . .
.

I switched a year ago. Now my electric bill is half, and I leave many of them on 24/7 in winter.

petefrt on March 22, 2013 at 9:22 PM

.
Do you use any of them outside during “temperature extremes?”

listens2glenn on March 22, 2013 at 10:32 PM

And of course there is also the 1.6 gal toilet that Congress also had no business mandating.

Dasher on March 22, 2013 at 8:03 PM

They don’t poop so they don’t understand.

Spliff Menendez on March 22, 2013 at 8:39 PM

I guess that’s why they’re all so full of siht, eh.

Oldnuke on March 22, 2013 at 10:41 PM

2012chuck: I admit I throw my CFLs in the garbage. Of course we have only 2 in our house. What’s the radiation issue you’re talking about, though? It’s *mercury* that everyone’s worried about. As long as the CFL remains intact it’s not a concern. It is certainly a valid reason to avoid CFLs though, no argument there.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 10:53 PM

I gathered a really big stash of incandescent bulbs before the ban went into place. My stash is dwindling and won’t last more than another 2 years. I really hope they repeal this ban before I run out…

Vegi on March 22, 2013 at 11:16 PM

There was a study a while back suggesting cfl’s had a high risk of the protective coating being scratched and leaking harmful UV radiation.

Imrahil on March 22, 2013 at 11:18 PM

I hate them. the lighting is crap and the clean up if you break one is dangerous Give me Edison’s bulb any day; I have been hording them and hope to never run out.

Bullhead on March 22, 2013 at 11:32 PM

Even if the cost were $10 for those bulbs, why spend that kind of money on one bulb when you can buy 100 incandescent clubs for the same money?

catmman on March 22, 2013 at 6:52 PM

Why change 100 incandescent lightbulbs when you may not even have to change an LED once?

Sterling Holobyte on March 22, 2013 at 11:45 PM

STOP ALREADY!!!

CFL’s are GENIUS.

They contain mercury.

The eventual ppm in the environment will be highest…..where?

nuff said.

WryTrvllr on March 22, 2013 at 11:48 PM

Look, people, as I said, I am running exactly one fixture with CFL’s right now. I am no advocate. But LEDs are going to save you significant amounts of money in the long run. CFLs usually will too but they are less reliable and have other issues. To say “incandescent are cheaper” is simply not the case. Cheaper to buy, sure, but significantly more expensive to use.

mcg on March 22, 2013 at 7:10 PM

Maybe if you live in New Mexico. Anywhere else (like here, where it was 6 degrees FARENHEIT this (global warmed) day) and they may save electricity, but NOT energy. My gas heating bill goes up, the more CFLs (or LEDs (which are too heavy for many fixtures)) I use. Any in the summer, there is more daylight anyway.

No savings here. Just another dumb lib idea.

WryTrvllr on March 22, 2013 at 11:59 PM

in the winter (maine gets cold) the incandescents used to help heat the house lowering my oil and furnace electricity usage.
I used to run cfl in summer and those in winter.
now I get to run furnace more.
thanks dumbasses.

dmacleo on March 22, 2013 at 10:07 PM

My local Wal-Marts here in New Hampshire have plenty of the real light bulbs in stock. You should consider a road trip.

Also stop by one of our state stores and purchase some adult beverages. Can’t beat the prices. As well as the low beer prices from the major outlets.

Del Dolemonte on March 22, 2013 at 11:59 PM

I am slowly changing over the lightbulbs in my home to LED’s. Right now I have them mostly in places where the lights are on a long time and where we don’t need a ton of light, since I have usually been buying the $10 ones at our Walmart and the brightest ones they have are 40 Watt equivalent. And I have a 25 Watt equivalent LED in our outside lamp post. It has been in there for some time now and is holding up pretty well in our Wisconsin winter cold-then-warm-then-cold-again temperatures.

I don’t have a lot of places to shop for them near here, so I am hoping Walmart gets some higher wattage equivalent LED’s.

CFL’s, I don’t even touch. I don’t like the potential for trouble with the mercury in them, and my wife can’t stand the “look” of the light from them.

That said, I do have a stash of incandescents that I started collecting when I first heard they were thinking of banning them. So if I ever need them….

Sterling Holobyte on March 23, 2013 at 12:00 AM

CFL’s, I don’t even touch. I don’t like the potential for trouble with the mercury in them, and my wife can’t stand the “look” of the light from them.

That said, I do have a stash of incandescents that I started collecting when I first heard they were thinking of banning them. So if I ever need them….

Sterling Holobyte on March 23, 2013 at 12:00 AM

In all seriousness, CFL’s really are great.

Great for outdoors. Never had a problem with the ballast even in 20 below weather. Why pay to heat outdoors?

Anywhere where you need lots more light, but the wiring won’t support the wattage (except your switches may arc due to the ballast) think dark basements. A 300 watt CFL is great (albeit huge). Somehow, I don’t think this is what the libs wanted.

LEDs? Waste of money. Twice the price of a CFL and no significant energy savings.

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:19 AM

Also garage door openers and bathroom fixtures, or any enclosed fixture where the heat generated limits the wattage allowed.

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:21 AM

300 watt equivalent

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:23 AM

LEDs? Waste of money.

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:19 AM

.
On what basis?
.

Twice the price of a CFL . . . . . .

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:19 AM

.
“Twice” the price? Thought it more than that . . . . . .
.

. . . . . . and no significant energy savings.

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:19 AM

.
Can’t agree with you there, Wry’. But I don’t own any ‘stock’, and I’m not tying to sell them to you.

Suit yourself.

listens2glenn on March 23, 2013 at 12:30 AM

listens2glenn on March 23, 2013 at 12:30 AM

Typical 100 watt illegal incandescant produces 1400 lumens. A 65 watt, 65% of that.

Can’t buy a 100 watt equivalent LED. It would weight 4 pounds for the heat sink.

The 65 watt equivalent LED would only give 50% of the lumens of a 100 watt incandescant.

Check it out yourself.

Their time may come. Just not yet.

Also BARELY more efficient than CFLs

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:37 AM

And I own NO stock. Not with DJIA at 14500

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:38 AM

Hey, also, for other preppers out there.

Your LED won’t survive an EMP

WryTrvllr on March 23, 2013 at 12:41 AM

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