Guide to Compact Fluorescent Lights

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    Compact Fluorescent lights can save you money and allow you to improve your lighting conditions at the same time.

    Each bulb that you replace will save you $5 or more a year on your electric bills and will basically pay for themselves in under a year. They also last much longer then regular lights … up to 10 years in some cases. The rating of $5 per bulb is based on 3 hours of use every day if you use the bulbs longer as for use of outside floodlights over night you can probably double the savings.

    You will also save about 1/4 ton of coal each year for every bulb you install. That’s a lot of dangerous digging that your neighbor may have to do just so you can have one light on and lot of stuff you are breathing in when its burned.

    And although a lot of people emphasize the ability to save energy which is the most important part of changing to fluorescent from other bulb types one of the great things you can do is increase the amount of lighting in your home while still saving money.

    If you have a 40 watt light bulb in your desk lamp you can upgrade to a 60 watt equivalent and only use about 15 watts of electricity. The same is true for dark basement areas, stairways and attic spaces. Even a 150 watt equivalent bulb will only use about 24 watts of electricity so you can easily light your porch,  doorway or back yard with a spotlight model improving safety and convenience while saving money.

    One of the best innovations is a dimmable fluorescent bulb that you can use in vanity, kitchen or other fixtures

    Lets look at the different types and uses for compact fluorescent lights.

    The Standard Spring shaped bulb is for use in fixtures that have a shade. They are a little less expensive then the decorative bulbs and work well in table lamps and hallway fixtures where you won’t see the bare bulb.

    Table lamp bulbs have the shape of and size of a regular incandescent bulb they can be used in exposed lamps or they can be used when a lamp shade attaches to the bulb.

    Globe Bulbs are good for Bathroom Vanities where they will be exposed without a shade.

    If you have decorative shades in your bathroom where you can still see the bulb you might want to try a candle shaped bulb that comes in both standard socket or in smaller sockets bases for use in sconce lighting often found in dining and living rooms.

    The Can Light type bulb can be used in kitchens and bathrooms where you have recessed lighting. They come in a few different sizes to match your needs and dimable options are available. 

    Floodlights come in inside and outside versions for track lights and for exterior safety lighting. You can also use standard spring shaped lights outside or candle lights for decorative outside fixtures. There are many different options. Make sure the bulb says exterior rated.

    Specialty Lights include bug lights (if bug lights actually work is another discussion) they also come in a variety of special shapes and features. You may see drop lights for your garage which are fluorescent and they work well because the element in incandescent lights often break if you bump a standard drop light.

    The variety and features of compact fluorescent lights have improved so much over the past 10 years that they really are a great option for about 80% of your lighting needs.

    Some people have brought up the health concerns of mercury being found in compact lights and this is something that you should be aware of. Aproximately 4 miligrams of mercury is added to each regular sized bulb to enhance lighting. You should handle these bulbs with care if the glass breaks. Using rubber or plastic gloves place the broken bulb in a plastic bag and wipe the area clean with a moist towel. 



    The YouRepair Store has a huge variety of lights and fixtures for inside and outside your home.

    Lighting & Electrical

    Light Bulbs



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