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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

When should I turn off lights?

So we have all drilled it in out brains and the brains of household members to turn off lights when they leave a room, but when should we do that considering we may return to that room soon?

We have a competition between the price of the bulb, the shortened life span of a bulb being turned off and on, and the price of electricity to keep the bulb on.

April 2009 Reader's Digest made a distinction between incandescent bulbs and the new CFL bulbs.

Incandescent bulbs are cheap to buy but more costly to keep on. Turning these off more often shortens their life span but they are cheaper to replace than the electricity they sap being turned on. The CFL bulbs are more costly to buy and cheaper to keep on. Turning these off less often is good if you return shortly to the work area because you don't want to have to replace these costly ones as often.

Reader's Digest gave this rule of thumb:
Turn off incandescents if you will be gone more than 5 seconds.
Turn off fluorescents if you will be gone more than 15 minutes.


Amanda XOX said...

cfl bulbs also have mercury in them. Not a good thing if they break!

KC said...

hands off my edison bulbs...Wont touch a CFl..and yo cant throw them in the trash either. They are considered Hazardous material, must pay special for a trip to the trash yard haz mat area.

Melissa Jagears said...

For me, there is no charge to take them to the hazardous waste place. Sometimes, they also hold drives for these kinds of things. Not only should you take CFL bulbs to hazardous waste place, but also batteries and paint.