Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Pitfalls of Compact Fluorescent Bulbs

Within a few months of moving into this apartment, we changed all the light bulbs from incandescent to compact fluorescent. It was a pretty big investment for us, probably around $100, but we felt it was worth it for the environmental benefits and the long-term savings potential.

We saved all of the old incandescent bulbs because at that time we only planned on living here for a year before buying a home and we wanted to take the expensive compact fluorescents with us. Obviously, our plans changed, but it’s fortunate we saved all the old bulbs because we stored them in the boxes from the new bulbs. This has been handy since all of those expensive bulbs have been burning out like crazy after just a year and a half. They are supposed to last seven years!

By reading the boxes the bulbs came in, I learned that the bulbs have a two year warranty. Even though I didn’t keep the original receipt, I called the phone number on the package and told the representative the problem. She asked for numbers on each of the bulbs and the store where I bought the bulbs, but that was it. No receipt was required. I should receive replacement bulbs in two to three weeks.

Now, I have a bunch of bulbs full of mercury I need to dispose of. I know, so much for the environmental benefits. By going to http://www.lamprecycle.org/ I was able to find a store less than two miles from my home that accepts CFLs for recycling. Hooray.


  1. We have almost all CFLs too and I never read the box - never knew they were warrantied. Good for you for keeping up with that and following through!
    Most of mine last, but now I'm going to keep my eye on some of them.

  2. thanks for the heads up I was not aware of this

  3. I think Home Depot & Lowe's both recycle these bulbs.

  4. That's weird! I'm glad the warranty is working out. Could there be something wrong with your wiring that's damaging them? I've been using CFLs for about 12 years and always had them last a long, long time. I love not having to change light bulbs all the time!


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