My experience with CFLs has been mixed, Living in Washington State there’s a subsidy to take advantage of, and I have bought a large supply of 12-15 WATT indoor CFLs for a price that amounts to the state sales tax, I figure I’m paying for the subsidy… might as well get some of the subsidized bulbs right?
One thing I’ve noticed about these CFL bulbs… it is a particular brand that receives the subsidy at the store nearest my house (Wallgreens). The store is full of other brands with no subsidy offered, what does that mean?
Some time back, I pulled down a number of four foot fluorescent tube fixtures in my shop, I was tired of messing with them, and I had a theory that turning them off and on as much as I do was hard on them and caused premature failures if we measure their life by the hour. Maybe how my times you can turn them on/off is a more appropriate measure? If you are trying to save energy, won’t you be doing a lot of that?
When I was at Home Depot, I found some really ugly bathroom fixtures that took four screw in bulbs up to sixty watts. They were $8 each….. reason being that even the blind didn’t like the way they look. Perfect for the shop I thought, mount them on the overhead, who looks up? I replaced a number of four foot fixtures with these, and screwed in the CFLs at the cost of sales tax.. (yes we know I’ll actually pay more than full price through increased taxes). As long as Politicians can sell the idea they’re giving you something for free, they’ll continue to offer subsidies, our Kids vote, and most of them think a subsidy and free are near the same things, it’s goes back to living your life by the month I guess.
My experience in the Shop has not been as good as I had hoped, I think all those on/off cycles are killing the CFLs same as the previous fluorescents …but I don’t claim to know what is really causing the falure. Is it possible they are just poorly made? I do know I’ve kept better track of my free standing ladder I use to change bulbs, I’ve replaced lot of them over the last four years.
On the plus side, I can light up our off grid solar powered cabin in Easton like Christmas Eve using the CFLs, and I especially appreciate the flood type CFL outside of the shed. I use this as a work place, and I’m amazed at how much light they make on a moonless night.
At the end of the day I ask.. when will the LED fixtures take over and be competitive on price? I also wonder if my State has really done the math on the investment they force all of us to make in CFLs via their subsidy? Do they know the failure rate of bulbs? My guess is the State Employees are busy changing them right now…. maybe the power savings will easily pay for the loaded labor rate hours to change them?
Following is an article sent to me, after reading it…note the advertisement on LED lighting, note how many different fixtures they have now, and we can wonder together how soon the price might come down.
If you are over sixty, you might have seen enough to know the trend. There are Bureaucrats intensely studying LEDs right now, they know a subsidy on LEDs will be popular with those who don’t know what a subsidy is yet. The average man plans no further than the month, he operates off two figures.. how much income he receives and how much he spends to get through the month. Inflation means far less to him, as he has no savings to inflate.
IF the LEDs come down in price, if they live up to their life expectancy, they might keep you off a ladder and keep you from breaking your neck …. that will be a cost you can measure for sure.