Let Joe Know: The mistake you make when using CFL bulbs

Do you have CFL light bulbs in your house? Are they lasting as long as promised?

Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs are supposed to save you energy and most importantly money.

But more people are complaining these "light bulbs of the future" burn out far too early.

Gene Zgoda is one of them. He installed the bulbs in his kitchen ceiling light and in his bathroom vanity.

"They say they are going to last longer and pay for themselves. They are pretty expensive. I think I paid $13 for some of them," Gene said.

He says the bulbs burned out in less than two years.

That's far less than the five to seven years promised on most of the CFL packages

The manufacturers now admit that the bulb's life is much shorter, especially if it is turned on and off constantly - like it would be in a kitchen or bathroom.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, CFL bulbs work best if they're going to be on longer than 15 minutes.

"So if the lights are to be turned on a longer time, the light bulbs would last a longer. But then that would waste more electricity, so what's the gain?," Gene asked.

Experts say there is a better option.
LED bulbs use as little energy as the CFL bulbs and they last longer, even if it's a kitchen or bathroom where the lights will be turned on and off constantly.

Now if you have or use CFL's, you can get the most bang for the buck by using them in living rooms or outdoors where the lights will be on for a longer time.

The Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy offer more information about CFL bulbs.

If you need help or need to warn others about a consumer problem or scam, let me know at joe@abc15.com or by going to my  "Let Joe Know" Facebook page.


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