CTWW Challenge-Changing Light Bulbs to CFL or LED

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This Week’s Challenge on Reduce Footprints:

This week’s challenge comes from Rachel. She suggests that we revist an old challenge … with a twist. Here you go:

This week, replace at least one incandescent bulb in your home with either a CFL or LED bulb.

OR …If you accomplished this challenge when we first ran it in July of 2009 (or before) … or if you felt, at that time, that you couldn’t participate … we’d like to know how it’s gone since then. Are you using Eco-friendly bulbs … why or why not? Do you prefer CFLs or LEDs … and why? If you’re using Eco-friendly bulbs, have you noticed a decrease in your electric bill? Do you recycle bulbs … if so, where? We’d like to know where you’re at now in regards to light bulbs.

I guess I am a bit too frugal sometimes, in that I don’t replace something until it wears out or breaks anymore. Yeah I know that CFLs and LEDs are more energy efficient and all that, but the incandescents that we have left are still working just fine, so why replace them until they burn out. I think we only have 3-4 left and they are in rooms that don’t get that much use.

As the incandescent bulbs in the house/garage stop working we are replacing them with LED or CFL bulbs. Personally I prefer the light given off by the LED bulbs and that is the direction I am going for future bulb purchases.

We haven’t really noticed any difference in our light bill from when we started using the “superior” bulbs a few years ago. Then again we are pretty frugal with our turning on and off our lights and we have a small home.

The local hardware store and transfer stations recycle CFL light bulbs for free. We haven’t had to replace a CFL bulb yet, so the recycling of them has not been an issue for us YET.

I can see a problem with waiting to get them to a recycling place or in the house – like any light bulb that they are subject to being broken and the toxins that are released when one breaks concerns me – especially if someone is there to breath in the vapor.

There is no doubt in my mind that sooner or later you will break a CFL bulb. However, it doesn’t seem to concern the green community all that much, because so many are on the CFL bandwagon, so it can’t be that big a concern. I haven’t really researched this point all that much, but it does concern me.

No the switch-over from incandescent lights to the more energy efficient ones has been a slow transition and not one that we have overly hurried to do. As the new light bulbs become better and more ascetically appealing the transition is not as difficult. Pretty soon it won’t matter, when they stop selling the incandescent and then everyone will just have to switch.

3 thoughts on “CTWW Challenge-Changing Light Bulbs to CFL or LED

  1. I'm doing the same as you … as my incandescent bulbs burn out, I replace them. I don't like waste of any kind and tossing a working bulb doesn't make sense … I'm not sure that it's very green, either … after all, adding new stuff to the mix unnecessarily isn't good. So I'm in transition. 🙂 CFLs seem pretty tough … I've only ever had one burn out (in the past 6+ years) and I set it aside to be taken to Home Depot on my next trip. I didn't place it in a spot where it would be tossed about or anything but still … it seemed pretty "tough". But yes, many folks are concerned about the small amount of mercury inside. LED bulbs would be preferable … I don't think they contain any mercury or toxic components. Do you find that LEDs, used in a room, provide adequate light? That's my next goal … to transition to LEDs because I think that they conserve even more than CFLs. Thanks for "playing". 🙂


  2. I know I just can't force myself to get rid of something still works quite nicely, so it will be a while before I will be completely converted :-)Thank you for continuing to challenge us to think about what we are doing, instead of just plugging along, doing what we always have done. It is good to think. Harold


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