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Reasons why CFL's are a rip-off
by Rick Delair
1 Cost- Compact-Flourescent
Lamps, or CFL's are expensive to buy, compared to standard incandescent
"A-Line" Lamps(bulbs). The claims are that CFL bulbs, also
called "Twisty bulbs," will pay back their much higher initial
purchase price in so-called energy savings and claimed longer lamp life.
In commercial and industrial use, they can net a small payback, but
in residintial applications, a payback is not likely to happen, and
if any, it will be so small as to be insignificant, especially after
the cost of disposing(recycling) of burned-out lamps is factored in.
Also, if incandescents and halogens are banned(proposed for 2012), the
lame-duck beauracrats and politicians will make the lamp makers monopolize
CFL bulbs, and the price will go UP, not down! They are already a rip-off!
2 Disposal- CFL bulbs contain many nasty toxic substances. You
likely know of the mercury they contain already, but they also have
things like lead(stabilizer in the plastic ballast housings), arsenic
in the electronic parts, phenol in circuit boards, cyanide to process
metals for parts, toxic phosphors, and the list goes on and on! They
can't be tossed in the trash can, and have to be saved and recycled(expensive!)
when they burn out. Incandescents are not only easily recycled, but
can be discarded in the trash- the glass and metals used are inert!
3 FIRE DANGER!
CFL bulbs with built in electronic ballasts, like the twisty bulbs,
have a serious inherent flaw- they are poorly designed, in an effort
to maximize profits for lamp makers and beurecrats, and have overheating
problems with the electronic ballasts. They are supposed to have internal
fusres, but the fuses blew early, causing very short lamp life, so "fusible
resistors" were substituted, that, that, instead of blowing, they
just get red-hotand eventually burn out, insuring longer lamp life,
but often igniting the plastic bases or causing other allast parts to
burn up, igniting the plastic base and circuit boards. Several major
fires were caused by CFL retrofit bulbs! The lamp makers claim it's
"normal for CFL bulbs to emit smoke, odor, sparks, and some flames
at the end-of-life(EOL)- it's harmless." WELL- if this is "normal",
something is VERY wrong . If you use this junk-yes, JUNK, don't leave
them on when when not home, or in basements, attics, closets, or other
unused spaces- you may end up with a pile of ashes that used to be your
house! CFL's also have bogus UL and CSA stampings, even names brand
like GE and Sylvannia, etc!
4 Life, Lumen
maintenance- CFL bulbs with integral electronic ballasts have issues
with uniform lamp life. For every CFL that lasts to or even past the
rated life, in hours, 10 or more will have a much shorter life- some
will even fail before 1 hour! Some will be bad and non-operational right
out of the package. Most can't be returned to the store where they were
purchased, and the companies that make them won't even bother to help
you at all. This is a sad situation, and one I see more and more today!
The lumen maintenance, if the lamp achieves the rated life stated, is
generally very poor- much worse than incandescent, so efficiency drops
dramatically throughout life. At 3,000 hours, a typical twisty bulb,
rated life of 8,000 hours, will be as low as 50% of it's initial lumens!
This is very poor performance, and thypical of these small, heavily
loaded, hot running fluorescent lamps!
Generally speaking, quality of CFL bulbs is poor. The bases should be
made of aluminum to dissipate ballast heat, but cheap, heat-trapping
plastic is used to cut costs! The tubes aren't phosphor coated uniformly,
and heavy areas actually trap light and cause darker areas, lowering
lamp efficiency quite a lot. Mercury dosing is seldom controlled well,
and it's not unusual to see 13-watt CFL's with more mercury inside than
a 1,000 watt mercury vapor lamp! The ballasts in CFL's are made with
poor quality electronic components and lack proper heat-sinks on critical
components-bad practice! The fragile glass tubes are easily broken,
and the UL listings fake and bogus. Light output claims are generally
incorrect and a lie. The are not REAL bulbs!
of origin- It should be noted that none of the current CFL lamps
are U.S. Made! Most, over 95%, come from China, banning incandescents
will insure the demise of American lamp makers and jobs!
of light- Despite claims that the newer CFL bulbs "have nearly
the same quality of light as incandescent lamps," the claims are
bogus. The color rendering index(CRI) of incandescents and halogens
is 100, while most CFL's are around82.
This means CFL's don't show the colors of objects and surroundings nearly
as well as incandescents. Many people find CFL lamps to be harsh, sterile,
and unnatural. Even lamps(CFL) in the same color temperature range,
2700 to 3000 kelvins, as incandescent lamps seem harsh and unnatural.
The other CFL colors do have merit, such as 3500k, 4100k, 5000k, and
6500k, because incandescents generally can't emit these colors without
colored bulbs, and even then, light output will be much lower in these
special color lamps. G-E REVEAL is an example of an incandescent lamp
that uses blue-purple neodymium glass to produce about 3200k-3500k color
temperatures. However, REVEAL lamps give up to 25% less light than a
standard clear, frost, or soft white bulbs. Here is where some CFL's
have merit. You can get a. say. 6500k daylight color from a standard
incandescent socket. But, also remember, the REVEAL bulb has a CRI of
90 to 100 vs a 3500k CFL at 82. In this case the CFL gives a certain
color of light at higher efficiency. The "soft white" CFL's(2700k-3000k)
really aren't worthwhile to replace standard incandescents. The just
made things look "funny" and harsh.
Fatigue Lamp- They have gone to high-frequency electronic ballasts
in most modern fluorescents today, with NO regards to the proven fact
that these T-5, T-8, and CFL lamps operated at high frequency may cause
Chronic Fatigue Symptoms in people exposed to them. People who tried
CFL bulbs often had to go back to incandescents because the CFL's made
them tired, and gave them bad headaches. I find that these new lights
cause me to have bad bouts of MS fatigue, and I avoid them like The
Plague! If they ban incandescents, just what are folks like me going
to do! LED's aren't an option, they also cause fatigue. This is a serious
issue, and millions will suffer. I'd venture to say that the high-frequency
electromagnetic radiation may be damaging to our health in other ways
9 Usage restrictions-
CFL's are quite restricted as to usage and applications. They don't
fit all fixtures, shouldn't be used in an enclosed tight-fitting glass
and plastic globes, etc., can't be used with dimmers(and dimmable lamps
are expensive!) because a dimmer will cause a serious CFL ballast burn-up
and maybe even a fire, they will fail fast in very damp and wet locations,
will not light brightly in cold weather, cannot be used in appliances
such as ovens, refrigerators, etc, are dangerous in garage "lead-lights"-NEVER
USE THEM HERE! They perform very poorly in recessed "hi-hat"
fixtures, and look awful in fixtures with exposed lamps, such as chandeliers,
vanity lights, etc. Though "3-way" CFL's exist, they are expensive,
hard to find, and on the lower settings they look dim, dreary, and pinkish.
To ban incandescents is to make over half the sockets in the U.S.A unusable.
Not a smart idea.
Stuff like TV ads sponsored by the beaurocrats at NYSERDA, the DOE,
etc pushing us to use this junk, also teachers in schools telling students
to tell their parents to switch to CFL, and even worse, LED bulbs, power
utilities handing them out for free, stores pitching them heavily on
ads and in stores. All propoganda. The Eco-Greenie enviromentalists
are no better. Yeah, and I have ocean-front property in Arizona, too!
The enviro-screwballs actually got President Bush to sign into "law"
the ban on incandescent bulbs, and they drove the documents to Congress
in a Toyota Prius-GIVE ME A BREAK- this was NOT serious, but rather
a public display of utter stupidity and political idiocy! And you wonder
why our people are getting dumber and dumber? This is an example, Oh-
and to AL GORE- screw a twisty-bulb in your ear- you'll have to pry
my "inefficient" incandescents from my COLD DEAD HANDS!
August 24, 2010
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