From the Manufacturer
Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) are energy-saving replacements for incandescent light bulbs. Below you will find information to assist you in choosing the right bulb.
How do incandescent bulbs and CFLs compare?
Incandescent bulbs produce light by passing electricity through a small wire filament, heating it until it glows. Compact fluorescent lamps use an efficient chemical reaction to produce light, which requires 66%-75% less electricity to produce the same light output as a comparable incandescent bulb. CFLs are also cooler than incandescent bulbs and last considerably longer. CFLs are available in the familiar range of styles and colors to suit different applications, including standard round, candelabra, flood, track, three-way, dimmable, indoor, and outdoor.
CFLs are available in three base types: screw base, pin base, and GU24.
- Screw base bulbs, which have the familiar Edison screw socket, are the type used to replace existing incandescent bulbs. Simply swap out the old incandescent bulb for your new CFL and save significant energy costs.
- Pin-base CFLs have small plastic bases with two or four pins and are designed to be used with separate ballasts mounted in fixtures designed for pin-base CFLs.
- The GU24 socket and base system is designed to replace the Edison socket and base in energy efficient lighting fixtures to match the newest ENERGY STAR requirements. Fixtures that use GU24 bulbs are designed to avoid backward compatibility with screw base bulbs, guaranteeing higher energy efficiency.
CFLs can last 8,000 to 15,000 hours depending on quality while incandescent bulbs typically last 750 to 1,000 hours. What types of lighting can I get with CFLs?
While many people are familiar with the bluish-white flicker of a hospital hallway illuminated by old-style 48-inch fluorescent bulbs, in fact a broad range of colors are available. The common colors range from a "soft white", to a medium white to a "daylight" color that has more blue and less yellow. Additionally, a range of novelty colors are available (red, black, green, etc.) including yellow, which is ideal for outdoor lighting as it does not attract insects. For indoor lighting of living spaces, choose a cooler temperature light, while for garages or work areas use the brighter and bluer daylight CFLs which cast a wider area of illumination. If you are using a dimmable fixture, you will need to purchase a CFL specifically designed for dimming; standard CFLs do not have that function. How do I dispose of CFLs?
Some municipalities allow for regular trash disposal while others require disposal at a hazardous waste facility, or recycling facility. Contact your local waste collection service or municipality for the policy in your area.