What You Have to Know When Buying Lamps
We are all conscious of choosing the right light bulb in order to save electricity (good for the environment) and therefore saving money. We are especially conscious of how much electricity bites into our household budget during winter. There are many hours of darkness and this means many hours of electric lighting. It is important we choose to use the most suitable electric bulbs that are cost effective, eco friendly and also provide sufficient light so as not to strain our eyesight.
Many people use either LED or CFL bulbs in their lamps. In order for you to make the right choice you need the right information about both.
- LEDs are grouped in clusters with diffuser lenses. They are small but effective. LEDs are more expensive but they last longer. As LED technology improves the price keeps going down.
- CFLs are cheaper than LEDs but they contain mercury, a toxic metal. CFLs are not as efficient as LEDs but better than incandescent bulbs. It is important for users of CFLs to ensure the mercury does not enter natural or manmade water systems.
Benefits of LEDs
- Mercury free
- Durable – no filaments
- Cost effective
- Cool – no buildup of heat
- Long lasting
- Efficient – use 2 to 17 watts of energy
- Excellent for generators – due to low power usage
Benefits of CFLs
- Cost effective – but not as much as LEDs
- CO2 efficient
- Versatile – can almost always replace incandescent bulbs anywhere both inside and out
- Quality lighting – CFLs produce a steady warm light instead of a stark white light
LEDs are available in warm or cool white light. They also come in different colors like:
- White (not harsh but soft)
- Red – for night vision
- Amber – does not attract insects
- Green – for pilots and military and retaining night vision
- Blue – easy on the eyes including elderly eyes and good for reading
- The mercury inside CFLs is safe but if the bulb breaks its hazardous. If it breaks then immediately open the windows and depart from the room for at least fifteen minutes.
- Use a damp cloth to clean up all the pieces and place inside a sealed plastic bag.
- Place the sealed bag inside another sealed plastic bag.
- Contact your recycling plant to ask how to safely dispose of it.
- Thoroughly wash your hands.
When CFLs burn-out leave them at Ikea and Home Depot Stores collection points.
Or, leave at local collection points for household hazardous waste collection (they are sent for recycling, recovering or treatment).