LED lights at home

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by flyingcheesehead, Dec 11, 2012.

  1. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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  2. RJM62

    RJM62 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Hmmmm....
     
  3. EppyGA

    EppyGA Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I believe you can order from the generic Ace Hardware web site and have it delivered to the nearest store.
     
  4. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Me too, they're the ones I've been using to replace the recessed floods in the kitchen. They're bright, reasonably priced, give off a much friendlier color than CFL's and I've had zero problems with them so far.
     
  5. Skylane81E

    Skylane81E Final Approach

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    I too have looked into it, but even if it dropped my bill to 0 it would take far to long to pay off.
     
  6. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Update: I've now replaced all the can lights in our kitchen with Feit LED's. They are great - No problems at all, bright light, instant on. I've been very happy with them.

    From that 6-pack of CFL's that I purchased 10 months ago, 3 have now failed. So, MTBF of 10 months, vs. the 11 years that they claim. :mad: So, you guys are absolutely right - CFL's are crap. And now I'm putting the install date on them when I put them in, so I can keep better track of it in the future.

    I've replaced more bulbs since, with both CFL's and LED's. In the bathroom, for example, we have a fixture with 5 of the large decorative "globe" lights. I had purchased an LED bulb to replace one of the incandescents, but when another incandescent failed I didn't particularly feel like replacing all of them with the expensive LED's, so I bought some CFL replacements.

    They work - But they take several seconds to turn on, and they turn on REALLY dim and take several minutes to "warm up". Again - Crap. And to top it off, I broke the LED one that I had by accident in the process.

    I did find some LED bulbs, but they were lower intensity. But, they come on to full brightness instantly. So, for now, in that fixture I have 3 CFL's for the longer-term brightness and cheap purchase price, and 2 LED's so that I get some usable light right away.

    In the future, I'll be leaning more heavily towards LED's. And the good news is, the prices are getting more tolerable. The 40W-equivalent globe ones were only about 9 bucks apiece.
     
  7. RJM62

    RJM62 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The Wal-Mart LEDs are actually pretty decent, and pretty cheap. I haven't had any fail yet at all.

    I've also had good luck with the FEITs.

    I have about six to ten remaining incandescent or CFLs that I want to replace. They're not used enough for me to ever recover the cost of the LEDs, so I figure I'll wait for a sale. The next one will be in the recessed light in the shower. I don't know if they're rated for that, but neither is the one that's in there now. I figger if it's rated for indoor / outdoor, it should be fine.

    -Rich
     
  8. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Thanks for the update Kent. I really hate CFLs. Dad put some CFL spotlights in the garage overhead lights, and when they're FINALLY up to full brightness, it's NICE AND BRIGHT in the garage, but they're utterly useless for the first ten minutes when it's cold out. I definitely don't want to shell out the bucks for spotlight sized LEDs in there... so I just live with it.

    Interestingly outdoors he did something kinda neat. All the outside lights out here in the boonies are just light pollution... and he knew it's so dark your eyes will adjust to just about any lighting level... so he put photo eyes on all the outside lights and little tiny 15W bulbs that have standard bulb sized bases in all the outside lights.

    Much less annoying than the neighbors who run a sodium-vapor light on their detached steel garage/barn building all night, but we can just leave the light switches for the outside lights on and not really worry much about power consumption, etc... but at least there's enough light to see the house from the road, see the driveway, walk the dog late, and fumble for house keys in the dark. :)

    There's only five outside bulbs (well, maybe six... probably one out back but we never use it) and only four are left on... two on either side of the garage ("coach lights") the mud-room door, and the door on the 2nd floor front deck.

    For the driveway, a pile of those cheap solar LED walkway/pathway lights stuck in little pieces of pipe hammered into the ground, makes the driveway look like a runway for most of the night. They eventually run out of steam sometime around dawn in the summer, and about 2-3AM in the winter, and then charge back up the next day. These are the cheapies from Harbor Freight and a whole set on sale is like $15 or $20 so there's spares in the garage for any that crap out.

    (I'd love to put blue LED's in them... taxiway lighting seems so much more appropriate than runway lighting for the driveway... heh heh...)
     
  9. Kiddo's Driver

    Kiddo's Driver Cleared for Takeoff

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    I kept blowing through severe service incandescent bulbs on the garage opener. I tried some CFLs but it ate them too. I spent $15 on a severe service LED bulb. It has been in there for 10 months and is still going strong.
    I'm using CFLs in almost all of my household lights right now. Once they eventually go bad I will look at the LEDs to replace them.

    Something like this:
    http://www.amazon.com/Miracle-60502...sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=severe+service+led+bulb

    This is the exact one. I ordered it on 14 January 2013 and put it in the day it arrived, probably the 16th. I paid $16.99 then. It is now $12.99.

    As far as brightness goes, most packaging over rates the output. Realistically, 7.5 * actual power consumption is about what they put out in incandescent equivalent.

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2013
  10. Tony_Scarpelli

    Tony_Scarpelli Pattern Altitude

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    WE just installed LED in our Kitchen and bathrooms on the new house. Wow are they bright. We use white lights - full spectrum so they were similarly colored-bluish.

    My thinking is to wait a year. I figure they will be down to $2 in a few short years.

    We built to LEED platinum standards so if I ever can use the energy credits again, I will put up solar cells and go off grid so to speak. In the mean time we are using 5000 btu's to keep the house at 72 all summer including days it was 110 d F.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2013
  11. denverpilot

    denverpilot Taxi to Parking

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    Heh. Avoiding garage door repairs?

    If and when you do it. Belt drive. I'll never do chain drive again after hearing the noise and vibration difference.

    Unfortunately we left the belt drive one at the old house. Back to noisy chains here in the new place.

    And some brilliant moron wired the garage door openers into a GFCI protected string too. Ugh. Only mildly annoying but if the GFCI pops from nearby lightning the garage doors aren't opening when you get home... ;)
     
  12. No Joy

    No Joy Cleared for Takeoff

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    For most applications I prefer LEDs. The initial cost is still fairly high, so I haven't completed switching over yet.

    For the most part the technology doesn't seem competitive with the equivalent higher candlepower. However I find LEDs great when higher candlepower isn't necessary. I love the long life and low power draw of the LEDs.

    Another way that LEDs seem to be superior. Is they put out such a narrow spectrum of light that that they don't attract as many bugs. So they're good for outdoor lights, when not a lot of light is needed. Less bugs are attracted to entry ways, so less bugs are liable to come in when you use entryways at night.

    It's great because I can leave the garage door open and work at night without attracting a lot of bugs.

    The downside is the color spectrum is not as accurate when working with photography or art work.

    The color spectrum sometimes hurts my eyes and my head. But the flicker of fluorescence is more likely to hurt my eyes and head. In that aspect incandescent is superior.
     
  13. Jim_R

    Jim_R Cleared for Takeoff

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    I would not say this is true universally. Unfortunately, I have not had good luck predicting which CFLs will last the longest.

    I have never had a CFL fail in under a year, but I have had 2-3 fail in far less time than their advertised life.

    On the other hand, I have CFLs in my house that are so old I can't remember the last time I touched the fixture (been in the house 12 years, and started installing CFLs shortly after I moved in).

    The oddest CFL I have is and outside light that I leave burning 24/7. It's one of the oldest at the house. Has a yellow lens that supposed to make it a "bug light", which I think is bogus based on all the bug carcasses around it. Over the years, its helical light tube has gradually gone dark from the tip toward the base, such that only the first 360deg twist out of the base is still illuminated. I don't have the heart to replace it as long as it still sort of illuminates the patio...
     
  14. No Joy

    No Joy Cleared for Takeoff

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    I've had a lot of bad luck with CFLs. I've had about three not work new out-of-the-box. I've had about six fail the first day. I don't think I've had hardly any last longer than a year. I have had two catch on fire (the ballast/circuitboard at the base). Smelled like burnt plastic and burnt electronics. Trashed the burned-up bulbs and put them outside, aired out the house for hours, and it still stunk for quite some time.

    Fortunately I was at home each time the CFLs caught fire. There didn't appear to be an open flame but they were at least smoldering. One dripped molten plastic onto my carpet. The molten plastic wasn't burning, but my whole house could have gone up in flames if it had been. Maybe I just got a bad batch, but from my experience, CFLs don't seem safe.
     
  15. Dr. O

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    We are using LED floods on the motion sensors around the property because the 500 watt halogens were burning too many KWH. The cheap LED floods (relative) do not have the brightness of the halogens but are tolerable.
    I have LED lightbars coming for use on the combines and tractors. We need more light but the alternator/battery are already maxed out with all the electronics and other stuff added onto 35 year old machinery. .
    I'm not ready for LED in the house lighting yet, mostly due to cost. We are using pig tail CFL's in the ceiling lights. Using a mix of warm and cold bulbs to get a tolerable light temperature. For the living room with the vaulted ceiling we still need the halogens to get enough light at the floor.
    The times they are achangin.
     
  16. Dr. O

    Dr. O Pattern Altitude

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    Oh yeah. We use the low wattage CFL in the shop and machine room and also in the hen house - the cheapest we can find. They burn 24/7 because of no windows. A few fail early on but most burn for years. I suspect it is the cycling on and off in a house that kills them faster than just burning all the time.
     
  17. silver-eagle

    silver-eagle En-Route

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    I have one CFL in a three way socket. It's the nighttime light in the living room. It takes a few seconds to warm up but since the light goes on about dusk, that's not much of an issue.
    A friend has a 40 watt in the toilet. Remind me please to never do that. Mind has four 60 watt incandescent which seem adequate to me.
    I am still not a fan.
    why replace a decent incandescent with a mercury polluting bulb which has a caution list "for proper disposal".
    Being a cheap SOB, I'm not ready to pop for an LED. Maybe when I can find a good sale or a big coupon.... Maybe.
     
  18. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    I agree they will probably come down a lot in the coming years, just as CFLs did. So I'm in a similar boat. I figure we'll replace most lights as they burn out.
     
  19. ron22

    ron22 Cleared for Takeoff

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    I agree modern CFL are crap.
    I bought some over 10 years ago when the local power company had some deal on them. They were still very spending.
    They lasted forever. Sad part is they are all dead and the cheap modern ones are crap.
     
  20. No Joy

    No Joy Cleared for Takeoff

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    The old ones had more mercury, so they lasted longer.

    They are supposed to be recycled, but I bet most end up in the landfill. I think most people realize that, so they decided to lower the mercury to reduce the amount that ends up in landfills and water supply and foodchain.

    Now that we have ones with less mercury, they are failing more often so more of them are going into the landfill.

    So it is questionable whether or not lowering the mercury content was beneficial or harmful.

    Either way, fluorescent light bulbs are contributing to poisoning our environment.
     
  21. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Final Approach

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    Our main living area is lit by a three fixture hanging lamp, and five bulbs in the ceiling fan, and another fixture over the dining room table:

    [​IMG]

    (The lamp by the window is still a CFL).

    Being on a budget and somewhat anal, I've spent the last eight months buying one LED (Creel "40" or "60" watt equivalent) at $9.95 or $12.95 at Home Depot each month.

    Just waiting for a cost-efficient LED replacement for the globe on the fan.

    Anyway, very happy with the results. Light color is fine, they dim to a much lower level than dimmable CFL's, much less heat generated. Only one out-of-the box failure - the plastic "globe" came adrift from the base on one.

    From this point on, will only replace incandescents and CFL's as they burn out.

    (note: on the TV is Andy Inhatko opining on the upcoming Apple announcement. I think the camera on my new iPhone 5s set on HDR did a pretty decent job on what could be a tough photo.)
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2013
  22. comanchepilot

    comanchepilot En-Route

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    you can buy LED's [dimmable and either E12 or E27 base] on eBay direct from China - even cheaper than cheap - I thought at $10 ea for E27 [standard] base 75 watt eq. dimmable that was a good deal but you can do much better direct from China.

    I have bought over 50 bulbs =- both E12 [candelabra base] and standard [E27] at an average price of about $3.25 shipped. The guy I use has replaced bulbs that have crapped out inside the one year promised - and I have a couple that are 2 years old now - its an infant mortality thing - they either fritz out in a month or last forever. I have three bulbs in fans above the stove that I bought in Sept 2010 that are still going strong and they are on 12 hours a day, 365.

    Last month I replaced 8 candelabra base bulbs in the light fixture at the end of the drive since 4 of the 8 CFL's had failed after 24 months - and someone stole them! I work up one am to the sight of the trim panels off and the bulbs gone - I only paid about $24 for all 8 shipped [the E12 bases cost more] and they are $22ea in Lowes - so much for that experiment. . . . back to cfl in that location.
     
  23. cessna182b

    cessna182b Pre-takeoff checklist

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  24. ChitDisturber

    ChitDisturber Ejection Handle Pulled

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    In my plane and cars, sure

    At home I still like the light of the filament bulbs or candles, dont like my home to feel like a sterile office :yes:
     
  25. dukeblue219

    dukeblue219 Line Up and Wait

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    I got sick of CFL's burning out way too often and just replaced them all with LEDs, either 60- or 40-watt equivalents. I found some nice 40-watt bulbs at Costco in a 3-pack for $20 - $10 instant rebate (paid by Pepco). It was a great deal at around $3.33/bulb. I believe the 60-watt bulbs I bought were about $6 each. It was by far the best price on LED bulbs I've seen, and so I got about 20 of them and updated the whole apartment. The color is reasonable, although definitely whiter than incandescent, and they're instant-on.
     
  26. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    As I said earlier on here, we have around 35 PAR30 flood lights in the house and have been waiting until prices come down.

    The other day on eBay, I saw PAR30 14W (7 LEDs, 2W each - roughly 75W incandescent equivalent) for about $11 each shipped when bought in a pack of 10. We ordered a 10 pack and put them in the rooms we use the most. Went with the 120 degree lights and the 6000K color.

    They've been in for a week now. Personally I think 5000K would be better than 6000K, but otherwise we're happy so far. They provide good lighting and are definitely using less electricity. The real question I have is reliability, which only time will tell.

    The other issue with them is that they are about 1" shorter in length, so they are actually somewhat recessed in the fixtures right now. I need to get extensions of some sort, because that's shielding some of the light and not getting the full effect.
     
  27. rottydaddy

    rottydaddy En-Route

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    I'm pretty impressed with the color temperature of the light from these things, and the brightness (considering the actual wattage).
    As for reliability- we'll see about these cheaper consumer units, but in the last couple of years I have seen more and more LEDs used for theatrical lighting, and that equipment is pretty durable (because it has to be). And lumen-wise, you get a lot more bang for your buck, as far as energy consumption goes.
    We stagehands also like them because they are much lighter, smaller and do not get very hot. :wink2:
     
  28. denverpilot

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    I bought 100 60W incandescents for less than $30 shipped to my door. At the usual burn out rate, I won't need any light bulbs until my 60s maybe 70s. Maybe even 80s. Screw the ban.
     
  29. eetrojan

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    That sounds like a plan. Where from? Thanks!
     
  30. John Baker

    John Baker Final Approach

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    I switched every light bulb in my house over to LEDs about a year ago. I did it a few bulbs at a time rather than make it into an expensive project. I found some great dimmable ones at Home Depot that look like regular incandescent bulbs. The brand name of them is "Cree", they sell for around ten or twelve dollars each. They are bright bulbs, a 60w looks like a 75w. The actual wattage is 9w on the 60s. Having dimmer switches are a good idea with LED bulbs.

    My electric bill dropped about 25% since I changed over. They come in different light colors so you can set each room up the way you like it. People come into my home and never notice my lighting, it seems the same as incandescent light.

    -John
     
  31. Ted DuPuis

    Ted DuPuis Administrator Management Council Member

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    I've got a whole bunch of PAR30 65/75W bulbs that I'm trying to figure out what to do with. I'd make a package deal for someone interested.
     
  32. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    And you can delay your retirement to pay the electric bill! ;)
     
  33. mikegreen

    mikegreen Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Got a link to your seller in china?
     
  34. denverpilot

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    Oh yeah. That extra $5 is breaking the bank.
     
  35. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I'd be surprised if replacing all your lights with LED's only saved you $5... My initial calculations showed that the lights would save about $1/month *each*. I assume you have more than 5 light bulbs in your house. ;)
     
  36. denverpilot

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    Continued thoughts...

    If you go waaaay back in this thread, I outfitted the old house with a number of LEDs. They stayed there when we left. Didn't like them much. Color temp was way too blue. No headaches like the CFLs, but glare was high. Had three fail. Some of those may have been stressed by a direct lightning strike the house electrical system took but they didn't fail at the strike.

    Decided to continue to use incandescents at the new place. They're easy to store and were still cheaper than dirt late last year.

    Ran some numbers here, assuming a 6% return, the money saved will yield $2400 in future dollars adjusted for inflation. Bunch of assumptions, but I assumed really cheap LEDs and no LED failures. Best case scenario for the LEDs and it still creates $2400 to pay for the extra electricity used over the assumed timeframe,

    So... I think it'll be a wash with the higher electrical bill, depending on future rate increases. Could even be a profit. And I gave the LEDs a huge price advantage. It'd be bloody expensive to convert this house fully to LED. If I bought too of the line LEDs to get the color temperature and lifespan matching the current bulbs and assumptions of lifespan, I bet I could make a case for $10K in lost future money.

    As a bonus, I won't be dumping any heavy metals or electronics into the local landfill, and won't have to figure out how to recycle failed CFLs or LEDs.

    Using 130V rated incandescents. Slightly warmer color since they're running on lower voltage and they tend to survive spikes in electrical service better during our vicious summertime thunderstorms. Slightly lower light output and energy use compared to their "wattage" rating also.

    Outside lights are "appliance" bulbs rated at 15W on photocells. No need for bright light out here, it's pitch black with any overcast. 15W lights are plenty on the driveway sconces and at the outside doors. Have monster flashlights for anything that goes bump in the night that's more than 1/4 acre away.

    I was actually quite surprised at how bad the LEDs ended up economically after running those numbers. Wow. Someone is making a serious fortune off of these things. Once LEDs drop to $1 a bulb or lower, I'll think about where a few might work. I'll even allow for inflation. If the LEDs hit $2.43 a bulb in 30 years, that will match $1 bulbs today if we assume 3% inflation over 30 years.

    Anyway, no matter how much advantage I give to the LED bulbs on price, the incandescents are easily paying for themselves, Kent.

    Was fun to calculate it out, though.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  37. SCCutler

    SCCutler Administrator Management Council Member

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    Interesting thing - other than commercial applications with lots of lights and extended operation times, and unusual locations where electricity is vastly more costly than the norm, LED lamps simply do not make financial sense. Forcing them on us by outlawing incandescents is offensive policy.

    Another interesting thing: incandescents sold here have, by and large, been made here. Not so with LED and CF lamps. China, almost exclusively.

    When, in the course of development, the LED lamps make financial sense for home users, they would have sold themselves, just as they have already done in some commercial and industrial settings.

    Reality check: I can afford to buy whatever damned light bulb I choose, but I shouldn't have the choice forced upon me. There are many who, in much poorer financial circumstances, find the difference between a $0.25 75-watt incandescent and an $18.00 LED equivalent, impossible to rationalize.

    Maybe it's time for a federal light bulb tax credit? Maybe a subsidy?
     
  38. DaleB

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    I replaced all of the incandescent floods in our basement with CFLs several years ago, and noticed a significant reduction in our electric bill. My office was in the basement at the time, so the lights were on 12-18 hours a day. While I was not at all happy with the cost or failure rate on the early CFLs, they now last longer than the incandescents did and cost a lot less. They work fine, although I hate the long turn-on time. Really hate it. In fact that characteristic is the entire reason we still have incandescent bulbs in a lot of places around the house.

    When we had our master bath remodel done, we got a new walk-in closet as part of the project. I specified LED lighting for that, and have been quite impressed with the results. I just replaced one regular incandescent in the bathroom with a Cree LED bulb, and put an LED flood in one of the basement can lights. Both are doing quite well -- I am impressed. The floods are pretty pricey still, but the regular bulb wasn't bad. Now we have little halogen spots (MR16) in the kitchen starting to die, and I'm about to order some LED replacements from eBay sellers to try out.

    I don't miss the incandescent bulbs, mostly because what I'm replacing them with are lasting a lot longer. I hate replacing bulbs, especially the ones that require a ladder.
     
  39. Everskyward

    Everskyward Administrator Management Council Member

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    Everskyward

    This...

    I have no clue if they are an extra expense or a cost saving but I sure like not having to change bulbs as often.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2014
  40. DaleB

    DaleB En-Route

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    When I first started installing CFLs and saw the difference in the electric bill, I did the calculations and figured the break-even point at a year or so (or maybe it was two). That was with older CFLs that were 3-4 times what they cost now AND used more energy. The first batch were 65W replacement floods burning 26W. The newer ones burn about half that, I think.

    Even with the replacements I bought for early failures, I'm still saving money now.