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Need advice re energy efficient closet lighting

Posted by bevangel (My Page) on
Thu, Mar 11, 10 at 0:28

I building a new home in an unincorporated area in Texas so I'm not bound by any particular codes or energy efficiency laws. Nevertheless, I'm trying to be as "green" as possible but I've run into a quandry in selecting light bulbs for my walk-in closets.

A single 60 W incandescent bulb has always been sufficient in my current walk-in closet so I had planned to use a single 13 W (daylight) cfl in our new closets. Problem is, the dang things take way tooooooooo long to warm up and get bright enough! And until they do warm up, the color is an absolutely LOUSY cold pale blue that looks like something from outer space.

It usually only takes me about a minute to pick out my clothing for the day but I do need bright, clear light to do it. I need something that comes fully on when you hit the switch.

I've also been reading that cfls that are turned on and then off again in less than about 15 minutes don't really save any energy. PLUS the bulbs burn out quicker. With the price of cfl bulbs and the mercury they're going to add to the landfills when they're thown away, I sure don't want to be replacing one every few months! I think I've replaced the incandesent bulb in the closet in my old house maybe three or four times over the past 25 years.

To a slightly lesser degree, using cfls in powder rooms presents that same problem. I mean, except for morning showers and getting make up on, MOST of our daily trips to the bathroom take - what? - maybe 2 to 4 minutes? Like closet lights, bathroom lights really aren't on long enough for cfls to be efficient there?

For now, I'm thinking it is probably best to just use incandesent lights in the closets and powderrooms - but what do we do when they quit making incandesent bulbs in 2012?

Do some brands/colors/wattage cfls come on quicker? Or, is there some other "green option" one can use in rooms where a nice bright light with good color balance is needed multiple times each day but for only a few minutes at a stretch?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Need advice re energy efficient closet lighting

hi,your best choice is to use LED lights which are energy efficient and long lifespan.

Now LED lights are widely used for urban lighting decoration, indoor home decoration, hotel decoration, stage lighting, road lighting and other areas.

You can visit the website for your choice. Hope you will find what you want.

RE: Need advice re energy efficient closet lighting

thanks for the suggestion. I always thought LED lights were only for things like xmas lights. (i.e., a tiny light - very bright for its size but not very useful for lighting a room.) I looked at the suggested site and it looks like there may be LEDs out there that can replace incandesents - but I will need to do some more research.

LEDs use lumens to talk about light output - which I think is more accurate than using watts b/c watts tells power consumption, not light output. But most folks are used to thinking about bulbs in terms of watts. That is, "I've been using a 60 watt incandecent bulb, how many watts do I need of this new-fangled kind of bulb?"

The folks pushing CFLs seem to understand that so they tell us that a 13 watt CFL is equivalent to a 60 watt incandescent and we're all starting to figure that out. Looks like the people making LEDs haven't made that leap yet.

RE: Need advice re energy efficient closet lighting

If you look on your cfl bulb packaging, it will probably tell you the lumens as well as the watts. For example, I have a package that says 13W, 900 lumens, 10 000 hours. If you don't like the blue colour, you can select a bulb with a different light spectrum, which will also be on the bulb. A soft or warm white is 2700 K, the blue light ones are probably 5000 K or more. There are new fluorescents called CCFLs that start up right away, last much longer and are dimmable. LEDs are the future, but I have read (on websites that sell them) that so far, the manufacturer's claims are not being met. You need a lot of LEDs equal the lumens of a 13W CFL or 60W incandescent.

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