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Old 01-09-2015, 10:50 PM   #41
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My CFL's have been in use for 8-10 years, so long that I still have some from a purchase at IKEA.
Sure a few burned out, about 10 in the entire house in the whole time, so I'm happy.
I recently replaced a few with LED's as I got those for $3 each.
I don't buy any of the 88 cent packs anymore, as I have about 20 bulbs left to use up, will probably move first.

I have a CFL inside a closet fixture, upside down, turned on/off 2-4 times per day for the entire 8 yrs, it's still going fine, but will probably replace it with a LED for the instant light feature.

The outdoor lights that are on from dusk to dawn are CFL's, they get dim in cold winters, but bad people are not out as its too cold I'll probably replace those with LED's as they will stay bright in winter.
The outside ones that are on about 12 hrs per night are the ones that have burned out the most and they are upside down as well, probably have 1 or 2 per year burn out.

I'm happy with the CFL's, but will use them up and switch to LED's when they are cheap ($3 or less).
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Old 01-09-2015, 10:55 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fermion View Post
LED bulbs do not last 20 years. Well, at least the electronics are not going to last 20 years.
I won't last 20 more years either!!
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Old 01-10-2015, 06:46 AM   #43
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Bought a couple of boxes (20-30) old fashioned bulbs at yard sales for a buck last year, they went to the rentals. Had switched out primary home to mostly all cfl bulbs. We do have some ceiling fans, outdoor lights and chandliers that have the smaller old fashion bulbs still. Don't use the light enough to bother replacing in mass, will just replace as bulbs die off. Will likely switch out several of the CFL bulbs to LED on the lights we use all the time for reading and in the kitchen. Don't mind the CFLs generally, but am impressed with the better quality light from the LEDs.
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Old 01-10-2015, 07:17 AM   #44
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Temperature, humidity, orientation. CFLs are very sensitive to all, more so than incandescents.

My theory is that when they rate the CFLs, they test them like this:
- low humidity
- orientation with base at the bottom (so heat rises up)
- moderate temperature
- airflow over the device

It is all a cheat. If you have a CFL with the base at the top (bulb pointing down) in a fixture, outside, the thing will not last long at all.
No different from the standardized testing procedure used to get those advertised gas mileage numbers they put on new cars.

And I have some base-up CFL bulbs that have been on an average of 10-12 hours a day for over ten years.

As I see it, the only significant factor is that there was an extraordinarily large variability factor in CFL manufacture, especially in the early years.
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Old 01-10-2015, 09:11 AM   #45
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One data point - I have hemispherical globe lights in my kitchen and the incandescent bulbs used to last a matter of months. I can hardly recall replacing a bulb since I switched to CFLs quite a few years ago. This, in spite of the bulbs being mounted horizontally in a closed glass globe, these lights being turned on an off often and running hours a day.
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Old 01-10-2015, 09:42 AM   #46
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We had some early failures in CFLs when we first started using them a decade ago... till we found out that they weren't rated for dimmable lights - and that's where we were using them. We then paid the ticket for "dimmable" CFLs for these fixtures and never had a problem again. These were high use fixtures (my lamp next to my chair where I read, and the dining room light). We've switched both to LED in the past year... we switched all of our high use lights to LEDs. The rest we'll switch to LED when the CFL dies.... our stash of LED bulbs is just sitting there because the CFLs aren't dying.
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Old 01-10-2015, 09:48 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeWras View Post
Temperature, humidity, orientation. CFLs are very sensitive to all, more so than incandescents.

My theory is that when they rate the CFLs, they test them like this:
- low humidity
- orientation with base at the bottom (so heat rises up)
- moderate temperature
- airflow over the device

It is all a cheat. If you have a CFL with the base at the top (bulb pointing down) in a fixture, outside, the thing will not last long at all.
Quote:
Originally Posted by braumeister View Post
No different from the standardized testing procedure used to get those advertised gas mileage numbers they put on new cars.
...

Actually, the published lifetime ratings of these things has nothing to do with those conditions. It isn't really a lifetime rating at all, it is a measure of when the 'bulb' is expected to dim to 70% of its starting brightness. So if the curve of degradation can be extrapolated (since they can't test them for 20 years) to show it will make it to 20 years and still be at 70.1% brightness, it gets a 20 year rating. Regardless of whether the electronics will only last 2 years.

Its false advertising in my book, but that is the government standard (at least I think the govt (Dept of Energy, FTC?) regulates that, I could be wrong).

edit/add: You are right though, keeping the heat build up minimized will help the electronics (electrolytic caps mainly) last longer.

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Old 01-10-2015, 11:24 AM   #48
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Al, do those dim properly with a normal (old fashioned) dimmer? I know some LEDs are supposedly dimmable, but require a new dimmer to work properly. Also, I was reading through the specs and noticed you can't use them in an enclosed fixture, like a ceiling globe. Too bad for that.

I noticed a couple of the reviews said the bulbs aren't really the same size as a standard A19, being a little bit wider. That might impact their use a bit too. I ran into a similar problem with the CFLs I tried. They were a little longer than the incandescents they replaced, and didn't fit one of my fixtures properly.

That is why I have loaded up on enough incandescents to last a lifetime for the key fixtures in home that are dimmable. I do not want to mess with changing out the dimmer switch. Besides electricity is cheap here.


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Old 01-10-2015, 12:55 PM   #49
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We switched to CFLs and ultimately did not like them, especially the can lights in the kitchen. Switched back to incandescent and gave all the CFLs away. Lately, we've started to switch to LED for our out door lighting.
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Old 01-10-2015, 03:00 PM   #50
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After several years of piecemeal efforts, we switched to 100% CFLs about 7 years ago. We saw a substantial drop in electricity bills (around here, the price of electricity is very high). We have recently been replacing any CFL that burns out with an LED. I would estimate that we are about 15% LED and 85% CFL now. I much prefer the LEDs.
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Old 01-19-2015, 07:10 PM   #51
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Al, do those dim properly with a normal (old fashioned) dimmer? I know some LEDs are supposedly dimmable, but require a new dimmer to work properly. Also, I was reading through the specs and noticed you can't use them in an enclosed fixture, like a ceiling globe. Too bad for that.

I noticed a couple of the reviews said the bulbs aren't really the same size as a standard A19, being a little bit wider. That might impact their use a bit too. I ran into a similar problem with the CFLs I tried. They were a little longer than the incandescents they replaced, and didn't fit one of my fixtures properly.
Haven't tried it. I have in a motion-sensitive fixture in the garage.

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