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Article Archive >> Environment

Bulb myths debunked

Bulb myths debunked

(NAPS)-Here's a bright idea: It may be time to get with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). Soon, standard incandescent bulbs are going away as a result of continued demand for more energy-efficient lighting products as well as U.S. federal lighting efficiency standards. This means energy-efficient alternatives such as CFLs are becoming even more commonplace.
Though CFLs save considerable money on electricity bills and light homes with a bright, white light, myths still surround them.
To help, industry-leading experts from GE Lighting are shedding some light on myths and questions, including lighting legislation changes, at www.gelighting.com/2012. Among the myths:
* Myth: CFLs contain high levels of mercury. GE CFLs contain a very small amount, 2 milligrams on average, which is smaller than a ballpoint pen tip. By comparison, older home thermometers contain 500 milligrams of mercury. It would take literally hundreds of CFLs to equal those amounts.
* Myth: If I break a bulb, I need to see a doctor. Scientists employed by the Environmental Energy Technologies Division at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that the amount of mercury a person is exposed to in cleaning up a broken lamp is equivalent to a bite of tuna, and even the worst-case CFL breakage scenario measured by one state EPA was equivalent to eating just a single meal of albacore tuna.
* Myth: CFLs are too expensive. CFL costs have decreased significantly in recent years. Some cost less than $2 when part of a multipack.
* Myth: CFLs produce an unattractive blue light. Today's CFLs can produce a soft, white light in color ranges similar to incandescents. Look for Kelvin numbers on packaging. Bulbs with a 2,700 to 3,000 Kelvin (K) number emit a warmer, yellower color. Those with a 3,500 K to 6,500 K number emit a bluer or whiter light.
* Myth: CFLs give people headaches. Anecdotal reports of headaches are very rare, and there is currently no scientific evidence that CFLs cause headaches. While older, long-tube fluorescent bulbs in industrial settings could have caused headaches due to their noticeable flicker rate, today's CFLs operate at a faster frequency to eliminate flickering. To learn more about advancements in CFL technologies, as well as halogen and light-emitting diode (LED) light bulb options, visit www.gelighting.com.

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