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#193331 - 03/28/10 04:02 PM Free lightbulbs?
Alan Belson Offline
Member

Registered: 03/23/05
Posts: 1801
Loc: Mayenne N. France
This news item caught my eye, claiming that the 'free' CFL bulbs issued by British POCOs have in fact cost consumers about US$60 apiece in increased bills.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/perso...bs-cost-45.html
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#193339 - 03/28/10 09:51 PM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: Alan Belson]
Rewire Offline
Member

Registered: 02/23/08
Posts: 167
Loc: Missouri
no such thing as a free lunch

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#193345 - 03/29/10 06:09 AM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: Rewire]
NORCAL Offline
Member

Registered: 09/25/02
Posts: 805
Here PG&E subsidizes the cost of CFL's so Costco has "deals" from time to time where a half dozen "frosty bulbs" are $3.00 a package, I would like to know how much we as customers are paying for them.

SMUD (Sacramento Muni. Utility District) also does the same subsidy & SoCal ECN members can confirm if So Cal Edison also does.

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#193360 - 03/29/10 10:26 AM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: NORCAL]
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9012
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I don't know of any CFL deal in Florida. They are getting pretty cheap at the mass marketers tho and I am switching over a lot of my stuff. I still have some things that don't like CFLs. A device type occupancy sensor is not happy with one. These use the load as part of the operating current path and a CFL does not present enough load in the off position. It just flickers and glows. I didn't wait long enough to see what, if anything burns up. They seem perfectly happy with a 15w sign bulb so that is what the one in my new room got.
This is just "walking through" light so it is OK for me and to the light bulb police, "come and get me copper".
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#193371 - 03/29/10 12:55 PM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: gfretwell]
Trumpy Offline

Member

Registered: 07/05/02
Posts: 8530
Loc: SI,New Zealand
Personally,
You'll never get me to use any sort of CFL lamp in my house until I can be convinced that they are safe to use.
Reason I say that, is because, I have been to more than a few domestic fire calls related to these lamps and have had a couple of bad experiences myself with the things overheating in use, one even caught fire and badly scorched the ceiling around it.

I use fluorescent fittings in my workshop (twin tube 58W units) and I've never had a problem with them, so why are these CFL's so prone to early failure?
And a catastrophic failure at that.
Could it be sub-standard materials or manufacturing processes?
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#193373 - 03/29/10 03:01 PM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: Trumpy]
Alan Belson Offline
Member

Registered: 03/23/05
Posts: 1801
Loc: Mayenne N. France
This typically British fiasco was caused by everyone running round like headless chickens trying to prove how 'green' they are and succeeding only in proving their heads are, indeed, ...er...cabbages. sick sick sick sick sick sick bash

The Pocos faced massive fines from the Regulator [Ofgem], if they did not implement carbon reduction schemes. The free CFL scam was their answer- it cost a lot less than the fines- and they delivered them gratis to households by the bucketful to folks who hated them and had firmly resisted the notion of actually buying the dratted things. It is thought that most of them are sitting unused in millions of kitchen drawers. Not only that, but they posted cheap outdated models too, with dubious light output and life claims. Then put up their rates to protect the bottom line so that poor old Joe Soap kinda got it in the shorts, twice.

I have now discovered that the old filament bulbs are freely available at electricians' wholesale outlets in the UK for industrial use. Just tell the clerk they are for your factory!
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#193377 - 03/29/10 07:17 PM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: Alan Belson]
aussie240 Offline
Member

Registered: 07/06/05
Posts: 221
Loc: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia
Originally Posted By: Alan Belson
It is thought that most of them are sitting unused in millions of kitchen drawers.

Mine included. They were being given away in shopping centres so of course I took them. But, yes they've been in their pretty carton, with decorative string handle, unopened under the kitchen sink for about the last four years. Reason being the only place I use them now is for my hand held lead lamp for working on the car. (One drop and an incandescent lamp is ruined if it's switched on).
On the other hand, the rest of the drawer/cupboard space is crammed with as many incandescent bulbs as I could squeeze in.

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#193384 - 03/30/10 12:46 AM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: aussie240]
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9012
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
Fortunately they haven't outlawed incandescents here yet but they are telling us how great CFLs are. I have been using them with no serious problems except the motion sensor problem. I still like the warmer light of the incandescent but some places I can live with them, like the garage and the post light outside. It is a little frustrating sometimes that they take a couple seconds to come on.
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#193386 - 03/30/10 06:03 AM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: gfretwell]
Rewire Offline
Member

Registered: 02/23/08
Posts: 167
Loc: Missouri
our poco is subsidizing the cost so our blue box has them really cheap

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#193440 - 04/01/10 05:34 PM Re: Free lightbulbs? [Re: Rewire]
RODALCO Offline
Member

Registered: 12/08/05
Posts: 862
Loc: Titirangi, Akld, New Zealand
The annoying part is the delay at switch on in certain applications.

The CFL's don't like bathrooms or damp environments.

As Mike says they are a fire hazard as well. Some of the units burn out for no apparent reason.

I admit that I like the cold white version which is great in my workshop on my move around lamp over my work bench.
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