Everything You Wanted to Know About CFL Light Bulbs & More!

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Criado Realty 0548772

LightBulbFinder.comHave you made the change yet? Are you still using Incandescent Light bulbs? Are you wondering about the pay back and return on investment? What about LED lights?  Isn't there a Mercury issue and disposal issue?  Finally, there is a resource for you to discover the benefits of CFL light bulbs!

I attended a webinar today and at first thought I would most likely find it a snoozer! About 10 minutes into it I was already getting some answers to frequently asked questions and expressed concerns.  About 20 minutes into it I learned about a great new app to help you make the right choice for you.

What's the issue with incandescent light bulbs?  Think back to the Easy Bake Oven that we all know and love. It uses a 100 watt light bulb to bake cakes, cookies, & brownies.  These light bulbs emit heat to the interior space of your home or office resulting in a 14-22% increase in your electric bill.  Wow!

Some argue that LED lights are a better option, but it all depends on how you use light bulbs in your home. LED lights are intended for longer use, which makes them ideal for offices and businesses that leave lights on 8 hours a day or longer. The on an off aspect wears the lights down faster so you don't get the expcted life span with  normal residential use.

Contrast that to the Compact Florescent Light bulb (CFL), which provides a more viable option to the traditional choice and LED. They do better with the frequent on and off needs of residential use, and they are relatively affordable.

But what about the Mercury?  According to LightBulbFinder.com founder, Mercury is produced in the production of electricity. Although there is traces of Mercury, the comparable amount is literally a molehill to a mountain.  By saving electricity you save more resources and reduce Mercury all in one shot. But do keep in mind they should be property disposed of in hazardous waste pick up. Given they last 5 years or longer there should be little waste compared to traditional bulbs.

So should you go out and replace ALL your light bulbs immediately? Not necessarily, but its something worth considering. While it seems like more land fill and waste, keep in mind that you're eventually going to replace them and create landfill.  Either way, it's going to happen, but if you wait, then you're wasting money on electricity.

One good strategy the host recommended is to replace those that you use at least 2 hours per day, and/or that have more lights, such as a kitchen light fixture with 4 light bulbs, or canned recessed lighting. The more you use them, the more immediate the need to replace. Research shows that payback on kitchen lights is .8 years. A whole house replacement is 2 years for payback. The ROI (return on investment) is subject to the brands you buy, the price you pay, and the quality you buy. Fortunately there are new label requirements so you can compare and make better choices for you.

Isn't there an APP for that? As a matter of fact, yes!  You can download a free app called Light Bulb Finder for your Droid or Iphone.  This is a really cool app you can share with your friends and clients to help find the right light bulbs based on wattage, style, etc. and even find out how much you will save based on the brand you buy and the market you are located within. 

How Cool is That?


Posted by
Cathy Criado President & Founder
Published Author
Your Real Estate Consultant!
999 E Basse Rd. #180-425, ​San Antonio, TX  78209​
​Direct:  (210) 560-1891
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Teral McDowell
Referral Patners LLC - Murphy, TX

There's an app for that - we really are turning into environmental conscious people. I haven't changed bulbs yet but I do other things to help out. To think all of this was unheard of when I was a chi younger.

May 08, 2012 02:51 PM #1
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

I am stock piling the OLD bulbs - the heat is a wanted side effect in settings with well and pump houses where there is no heat and freezing weather....that heat is a welcome side effect.

Those that wrote and passed this legislation failed to note that getting rid of the burnt out bulbs in the future is a real health and safety issue that has not been addressed

May 08, 2012 08:28 PM #2
Joan Cox
Metro Brokers - House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Cathy, sure wish the maker of these new bulbs would make them look nicer --- they are a bit ugly, but know we need to use them!

May 08, 2012 10:54 PM #3
Debbie Laity
Cedaredge Land Company - Cedaredge, CO
Your Real Estate Resource for Delta County, CO

Our last house was completely off the grid and that's when we started using CFL lights. They really do last forever. I can't say how much we are saving on electricity, because we've been using them at this house for over 12 years.

May 09, 2012 01:04 AM #4
Dick Greenberg
New Paradigm Partners LLC - Fort Collins, CO
Northern Colorado Residential Real Estate

Hi Cathy - Thanks for the info and the app. We've been gradually replacing our old ones as they wear out, and I'm glad to see that they're becoming less expensive.


May 09, 2012 01:18 AM #5
. 4Terra Land Brokers .. 828-776-0779 Asheville NC
What's Most Important to YOU? Call(828)-776-0779

VERRRRY Cool! Thanks for the information and for advice bout green-friendly living...

May 09, 2012 03:21 AM #6
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

We use a lot of LED lights in our house and you'd be surprised how much light they give off, and how little power they use.  Every little bit counts.

May 09, 2012 04:47 AM #7
Mike Cooper
Cornerstone Business Group Inc - Winchester, VA
Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Sales Pro

Cathy, it's interesting, when I was in electrical school in the early 70s we knew then that if you could load your house with florescent lamps you could cut your electric bill approximately 15%.  It took that long for the creation of an A line based lamp to evolve.  

May 10, 2012 12:38 PM #8
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Los Angeles CA

According to the Department of Energy, if every American home replaced just one incandescent lightbulb with one Energy Star CFL bulb we would save enough energy to light 3 million homes for a year, save about $600 million in annual energy costs, and prevent 9 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions per year equivalent to those from about 800,000 cars.

Sep 28, 2015 07:19 AM #9
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Cathy Criado

Making Real Estate Profitable
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