CFL bulbs

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I'm pretty sure I've replaced the CFL in my kitchen twice in the last year.
Nothing funny about the application that I can see: single light fixture in center of ceiling, with a globe. Gets used about 5 times/day, never left on for over an hour.
The bulb I just replaced is Sylvania 23w .33a, "lasts 7 years". It couldn't have been in service more than 8 months.
Are CFL's all they are cracked up to be? Is one brand lots better than others? Etc, etc.
Peetie
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Probably overheating in the globe. Check the instructions, in the past they were not to be used in and enclosed fixture.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

They don't like a lot of vibration either (like in a 25 year old garage door opener).
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Even incandescents don't like vibration. The only incandescents in our house that fail with any sort of regularity are three in a ceiling that is subject to heavy foot traffic on the floor above.
--
Tegger

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I find that they handle it far better than incandescents! I've been using CFLs in places where incandescents just won't work (e.g. sandblast cabinet) with good success.
probably the short life is due to overheating as the man said, base up and enclosed are two things specifically warned against on the packaging of some CFLs.
nate
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Just curious. Does number of on/off cycles have any effect on life? I am at war with my wife over the kitchen one. she turns it off every time she leaves. since there is no window there it needs to be turned back on on the visit, constant through the day. She is "savign money", I say it uses more electricity starting up than leaving it on.
Harry K
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wrote in message

They do not take more power to start up than they save. However, they do not last very long if they are cut off and on often. They and most all fluorescent lamps need to be left on most of the time and not short cycled. This is for most all electrical devices.
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Ralph Mowery, Harry K,Ed Pawlowski & Peetie Wheatstraw wrote:

Except, of course, the tungsten bulb they are designed to replaces and which has been flashing on marquees and roller coasters for years. I think that's part of the dissatisfaction with CFL's. They are certainly not a 1 to 1 replacement. The high wattage ones are huge and I find fit in very few fixtures that say a 150W tungsten would. They also don't dim worth a damn and wreak havoc with home automation gear. That's why I believe LED's will eventually bury CFLs. They have a far greater potential to be an uncompromised replacement for the tungsten bulb.
Perhaps the new bulbs are better but I have three that take 5 minutes to warm up. They are N:vision floods from HomeDepot and one of them just failed quite noisily filling the inside of the floodlight with small, black soot-like particles. Not quite ready for prime time, IMHO although I do like the savings on the electric bill and their cool running ability, especially in the summertime.
-- Bobby G.
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I would beg to differ...

<SNIP after that>
There is a CFL type to replace those - even though the incandescents usually used there are not subject to the 2012-2014 "ban" because their design light output is less than 310 lumens.
As for CFL type that is good for blinking duty such as in marquees: There is such a thing! That is the cold cathode type.
These are mostly available in wattages around/under 8 watts. They usually replace incandescents of wattage 10-25 watts.
These are better-available from online outfits such as bulbs.com and their online competitors. There is a 3-watt version that I have seen in Lowes and Home Depot.
Cold cathode CFLs tend to be less efficient than hot cathode ones are, in wattages where both options are available. However, the cold cathode ones are still 3-plus times as efficient as the incandescents that they replace.
Cold cathode CFLs, unlike the usual hot cathode fluorescents, do not suffer electrode wear from starting. They can fairly easily survive being turned on and off every second 24/7/365 for 2 years!
Many, maybe most, of cold cathode CFLs are rated as dimmable. Furthermore, their rated life expectancy appears to me limited by wear of their phosphor or electronic failure or breakage. Their rated life expectancy appears to me typically 20,000 hours - much longer than usual of the usual "hot cathode" CFLs. Especially in light of hot cathode CFLs of wattage 7 watts or less having less life expectancy than that of hot cathode CFLs 13 watts or more.
I have found cold cathode CFLs being used in Las Vegas by multitudes of thousands.
One CFL downside not fixed by cold-cathode technology: If the whole bulb has been off for a while, next time it gets turned on, it will start dim and need a minute or two to warm up. Dim-cold-starts and long-warmup-times typical of CFLs with outer bulbs apply to cold cathode CFLs. However, cold cathode CFLs tend to mostly warm-up within 5 minutes even if they are in blinking duty.
--
- Don Klipstein ( snipped-for-privacy@donklipstein.com)

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Don Klipstein wrote:

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Yes, it shortens the life, but I don't know how much. I once heard the "rule of thumb" was leave in on if about 15 minutes or less before it would go back on.
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Harry K wrote:

A CFL in the process of starting does not use more electricity than one that is running - at least not significantly. Turning it off for even only 10 seconds will save electricity in comparison to leaving it on.
However, starting a CFL does cause wear. If the CFL takes a fraction of a second to a second to start when cold, and does so without any blinks, then it has a gentler starting method - a start causes as much wear as a couple to a few minutes of continuous operation. If the CFL starts instantly (even if dim) when cold, then a start causes as much wear as maybe 10 minutes of running.
Financial break-even time between leaving-on and turning-off varies with electricity cost, CFL wattage, CFL cost and the CFL's starting mode. But for a "one-size-fits-all", I would only turn it off if it is expected to stay off for at least 20 minutes.
--
- Don Klipstein ( snipped-for-privacy@donklipstein.com)

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http://www.cflfacts.com /
?Can CFLs be used in totally enclosed fixtures? .Yes, but with some qualifications. The life of CFLs will be reduced if they are operated at higher than normal temperatures. Therefore, they can be used in totally enclosed fixtures, including vapor-tight fixtures, as long as you do not use a high power CFL, and the temperature outside the fixture is not too high. I have successfully used 25-watt CFLs (light output equivalent to 100-watt incandescent lamps) in large vapor tight fixtures, but these lamps were installed in a relatively cool area. If the fixture is small, or if the fixture is installed in areas with high temperature, such as Phoenix, the power rating of the CFLs should be limited to 15 watts or less.
This site is provided as a service by
Roberts Research & Consulting, Inc., a lighting technology consulting firm based in New York State. It is not affiliated with or supported by any other organization.
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On Sat, 02 Jul 2011 22:32:42 -0500, Peetie Wheatstraw

As others have said, a fully enclosed fixture may be bad for the bulb, even if the label says it's OK. I've had the experience of using in a closed globe a bulb labeled only "do not use in a fully enclosed RECESSED fixture" (emphasis added). After a couple of early failures, I contacted the company and was told that I should not use the bulb in an enclosed fixture. When I asked about the discrepancy with the label, they stopped answering my emails. I haven't bought any more of their bulbs.
Yet in other closed fixtures I have CFLs which have lasted for years. Go figure. Possibly it's because in the one with multiple failures, I used larger bulbs. But the others have also mostly been other brands.
I've switched to open fixtures for the problematic ones and have settled down to an extremely low failure rate.

On the average, yes, they are what they are cracked up to be. However, you will see a lot of variation. Despite the rating of 10,000 hours, some will last 1,000 hours and some will last 30,000 hours. In some, the color will shift slowly with long life. Unfortunately, if you switch all your lighting from incandescent to CFL at one time, you'll soon see the short-term failures and it will take a lot longer to see the compensatory long tail. Also our minds tend to dwell on the early failures and ignore the ones that just shine and shine and never complain. The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
Yes, some brands will be better than others, but you can't necessarily go by past records. They are probably all changing manufacturers as needed. I had bad luck with Sylvania, and that's the one which contradicted their own label -- but that was several years ago. I like the ones from Home Depot, formerly n-vision, now eco-something. In part that's because I like daylight spectrum (5500K) and they have a lot of choices in that color. They also have lots of choices in "soft white" (yellow incandescent-like, 3500K) and "bright white" (intermediate, 4500K).
You can get the standard 13W size for under $2 each in multi-packs. Unfortunately they almost all come in PETE sealed packages. If you don't have a nuclear bomb handing, metal snips do a pretty good job of opening the package. Still, it seems pretty stupid to me to package a fragile item in package that requires heavy-duty tools to open. If you don't already have metal snips or something similar, get them when you get the bulbs. Trying to open these packages with a knife is asking for a trip to the urgent care center.
Edward
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wrote:

From my experience, bulbs mounted base up have a markedly shorted lifespan than those mounted base down. Base up in a recessed fixture (which really bakes the electronics pod) is the worst for longevity.
-- Bobby G.
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wrote:

I think there is just a large variation in how they perform and how long they last. I use a 100W equivalent one in an enclosed globe on a ceiling fan. And it's lasted at least 5 years, maybe longer. And I typically leave it on at night. I can't see the temp inside a reasonably size globe getting that hot from a bulb that only draws 23W.
On the other hand, I've had lots of them that fail in a year or less. It's just another example of govt abuse of power, forcing these down our throats, when they have obvious and serious problems.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote in part:
<SNIP to the point of operating inside a globe>

I just tried operating a 23W CFL inside an 8 inch globe on top of a single-socket floor lamp (base-down).
Globe temperature was 27 C (80.5 F) just before I turn on the CFL.
After slightly less than half an hour, the globe temperature was 51 C (124 F) on the top, and 37 C (98.5 F) halfway up - on the outside.
If a 23W CFL operates base-up in an 8-inch globe, its electronics will get on the hot side.
================= CFLs are usually more efficient at producing convected and conducted heat than incandescents, despite being more efficient at producing light. What incandescents are more efficient at producing is infrared - most of which escapes most fixtures before becoming heat.
I once tried measuring temperature rise of that 8 inch globe with a 60W incandescent and a 42W CFL. The 42W CFL heated up the globe slightly more than the 60W incandescent did.
--
- Don Klipstein ( snipped-for-privacy@donklipstein.com)

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in part, edited by me for space:

It's Ecosmart.
Ecosmart's colors:
Soft White - 2700 K (incandescent-like) Bright White - 3500 K ("halogen-like" whitish-incandescent color) Daylight - 5000 K (icy cold pure white) 5500 K when it was N-Vision (extremely slightly bluish)
With other brands, "Bright White" is sometimes 4100 K, which is white of a shade similar to that of average midday direct sunlight. "Daylight" usually means anywhere from 5000 K to 6500 K (bluish white), though I have known Sylvania to use "Daylight" as their term for 3500 K.
--
- Don Klipstein ( snipped-for-privacy@donklipstein.com)

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Peetie Wheatstraw wrote:

Consumer Reports tested them in Oct. 2009 and found only Ikea's brand fell far short of rated lifespan. The 12,000 hour Sylvanias ranked in the top tier for lifespan, but some 10,000 hour Sylvanias were in the next tier.
Over 6 years ago, I bought a lot of MaxLite CFLs that usually blew out in1-2 years. Many had a blown transistors and a large electrolytic capacitor that was bad. That capacitor was some funny brand (Aishi) and was mounted right in the middle of the base, where it baked really well.
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I write the date on mine when I install them.
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