LED bulbs not so bad

Page 7 of 7  
On 11/29/2015 1:57 PM, HerHusband wrote:

Given time, they'll also shift a bit towards the red/pink. But, I suspect the ballasts will crap out long before that! Any time you try to cram a fair bit of power switching electronics in a small, enclosed container sited in a location that won't naturally lend itself to cooling, you know you're just counting the hours to failure.
[I think it is outright fraud that they claim these things will last 85 gazillion hours -- and base their ROI analysis on those inflated figures -- when the components are often spec'd for a few *thousand* hours!]

It's only money, right? :> Send it off to China or send it to your own "local" utility...
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On 11/29/2015 3:57 PM, HerHusband wrote:

We use an under counter light as a nightlight. Even during the day. in 50 years and two houses, the only time it is turned off is when it burns out.
The cheap 15" fluorescent would last a couple of years and I could buy a new fixture for about a dollar more than the bulb. About two years ago I upgraded to and LED. It was costly, but I hope to get many years from it.
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On 11/29/2015 12:46 PM, HerHusband wrote:

I'm basically doing the same. I still have several "super" incandescent bulbs that use higher molecular weight inert gas, not sure which, that lets filament last longer. These bulbs are about 40 years old and are in infrequently used fixtures like a remote powder room.
Yet to use an LED bulb yet and still have many CFL's.
A few CFL's are hummers and very annoying, like tinnitus. I had one batch that was so white I could not use inside and relegated to the front porch.
I once heard that only 14% of total household consumption of electricity was from lighting, so you can reach a point of diminishing returns in replacing old cheap incandescents with expensive, for now, LED's.
I'm also sold on using LED flashlights exclusively but have had to toss a few, not because bulb gave out, but mechanical switches went bad.
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On 11/29/2015 12:28 PM, Frank wrote:

The same can probably be true of LED lamps -- its in the nature of the ballast (though moreso for the CFL's as they have a step-up converter excited at a higher frequency to keep the magnetics small)

Yup. Refrigerator is a big pig. Here, ACbrrr accounts for about half of our summer load (which is double the winter load).
Some (new-ish) TV's are also surprising hogs! And, many devices only *appear* to be "sleeping"/off when, in reality, they're just "dark, but waiting".
Wall warts use some power even if the device with which they are associated is "off". Chargers, etc.
I have at least two computers running at all times -- plus 4 monitors. Often, I'll add two or three more machines to the mix, depending on what I'm doing -- some of those being servers that make no attempt to "save energy" (their goal is to "save BITS")
[And, of course, the light in the refrigerator -- that we all KNOW is secretly ON even while the door is closed! :> ]

I'm fond of flashlights that I can hang/mount in specific places. E.g., we have a pair of maglites mounted near front/rear entryways; a tiny "penlight" maglight hanging from a teacup hook next to the network switch in my office; an HF "area light" hanging under another workbench; etc. It's easier to just remember where their individual homes are than to run around wondering where you've left it, last!
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When I rebuilt my computer, low noise and energy usage were big priorities for me. I now have an i7-4790K, with two hard drives, and two SSD's. Most of the time my entire system uses around 80 watts, including the monitor, cable modem, and router. It can jump up to 130 watts or so when doing heavy processing, but drops to around 60 watts at night.
I have a UPS that makes it easy to monitor the power usage.

I have an LED lantern that runs on four D-cells, same battery for over four years now. Also have a couple of handheld LED flashlights.
For emergency power I have several of these LED power outage lights:
(Amazon.com product link shortened) Rechargeable/dp/B00ETW7C24/ref=pd_sim_hi_3
They're always charged up and come on automatically when the power goes out. We can also unplug them and use them as flashlights around the house when needed.
Anthony Watson www.mountainsoftware.com www.watsondiy.com
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On 11/29/2015 5:47 PM, HerHusband wrote:

I don't have that choice for at least two of my computers: a Sun Ultra 60 and an Sun Blade 2000. The processors (as in "chips") don't come in low power versions (I think each of the two "CPU's" draws 50W!). ISTR the U60 runs at about 200W (actual) while the SB2000 is closer to 300W. Of course, spinning up either of the 12 disk "shelf" on either adds another 150W... The software that runs on these simply won't run on anything other than a SPARC "CPU". I can afford a LOT of electricity to offset the effort it would take me to migrate away from them! :>
Three LCD's on each machine add another 150W.
This "email/WWW" machine is relatively low power -- but still close to 200W when you add in the power consumed by the monitor.
The box that provides my core network services (TFTP/DNS/NTP/xfs/etc.) draws only about 9W. It's tucked under a dresser and is never off. A tiny UPS can keep it running almost indefinitely!
I have several 1U and 2U servers with dedicated functions. E.g., one acts as the repository for "everything" -- so I can step back in time and recreate a project at any point in its development/production lifetime (including the tools that were used to develop/maintain it!). Another just "serves up" VM's of older system images (again, so I can step back in time and work in an environment that existed "back then" without having to keep a real PC around in exactly that configuration... indefinitely!)
There are three windows machines (everything mentioned thus far is NOT windows) that act as my Multimedia, Engineering and Publishing workstations. Splitting the functions in this way lets me distribute the required peripherals across the different machines AND "work areas"! (it's just not possible to cram all of the required peripherals in a single place and have them all accessible to me seated in a chair). E.g., the Multimedia system has devices to capture and record production quality audio and video (e.g., studio microphones, etc.); the Engineering workstation has tools to let me design and manipulate 3D mechanical and electronic devices; the Publishing workstation lets me create documents to describe each of these other activities (including illustrations, photos, animations, etc.).
These three boxes could benefit from modern upgrades. But, the time that it takes to reinstall and reconfigure all of the software (and hardware) is insane! Weeks for each machine! And, that assumes the software and hardware will be compatible with that "upgraded machine"! Anything lost in the process represents time and money (to buy upgrades, new licenses, etc.) that I can just as easily spend on electricity :-/
An HTPC sits in the living room in place of a consumer DVD player and DVR. It's not on all the time so dubious as to how much I'd save moving it to a newer platform (again, everything takes time; time is actually money, in my case)
A Blade Server spends sees only infrequent use -- it draws a few thousand watts (I think there are 28 physical CPU's in it, 28 small disk drives, 60+ GB of RAM, etc.). I think the fans (two redundant "blowers") probably draw close to 50W!
So, we just live with the less-than-optimal power profiles.

I have a *CFL* lantern that runs on 8D's. It's actually an interesting design: it looks like an oversized flashlight (4" reflector). You can clearly see the CFL in the center.
<
http://r1.coleman.com/ProductImages/Full/5324-700_500.jpg
But, if you pull the lens *forward*, the lantern gets LONGER (the CFL remains in the same place) and the sides of the lantern are clear plastic. So, you can set it, lens down, on a table and turn it into a "table lamp".
<
http://r1.coleman.com/ProductImages/Full/2000000896_500.jpg
But, it eats batteries. Unfortunately, replacing the alkalines with a rechargeable chemistry (NiCd, NiMH) leaves it operating at a lower voltage (8*1.2V instead of 8*1.5V). And, getting D cell rechargeables is expensive (not to be confused with AA cells in D-sized sleeves!)

We had something similar (in principle). Looked more like a flashlight, though. While plugged in, it had an EL panel exposed that acted as a nightlight (really only useful for locating the flashlight in the dark).
But, it had a silly charging circuit that ate batteries... (overcharged them)

In an outage, I just plug a table lamp (with a CFL) into a UPS. It will run for half a day drawing ~15W (i.e., long enough to make it to sun-up). If push comes to shove, turn on genset.
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Frank,

Did you get a daylight bulb instead of a warm white bulb? Probably just the wrong color temperature.
Thankfully, I've never had a CFL that hummed.

For lights that are only used briefly (closets, etc.), switching to CFL or LED is probably not going to make a noticeable difference in electric usage.
However, I work from home and have several lights that are on 14-16 hours a day. While that is still a small portion of my total electric bill, I do notice a difference in our electric usage. There's not a lot I can do to reduce the energy consumption of our heaters and hot water (already maxed out on insulation), but changing lights is an easy thing to do.
Still, considering the cost of LED bulbs, I'm sure it would take a very long time to pay off financially. I'm switching mostly for the better lighting. Energy savings is just an added bonus.

Yep, same here. Much brighter light and the batteries last a very long time.
Anthony Watson www.mountainsoftware.com www.watsondiy.com
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On 11/29/2015 10:46 AM, HerHusband wrote:

We only notice this on the dimmable CFL floods. It tends to be pretty warm here, most of the time (and, esp so, indoors!) Garage is the only significant semi-outdoor site and it has tubular fluorescents, presently; incandescents on the porches...

I doubt we've seen 3 years on most of ours! They give up the ghost pretty quickly, IME. I can reach those in the cans for 8 ft ceilings "on my toes" but the higher ceilings mean taking out a stepladder.
We've been slow to move to LEDs throughout simply because of the bad experiences (lifespan) with the CFL's. Were it not for the big subsidies, I'm sure there would have been *no* savings, there!
And, the LED lamps aren't (yet?) heavily subsidized -- esp the dimmable floods (which would account for probably 30% of our lamps). IIRC, the 60 eq W floods were something like $13/pair? Buying them in lots of 10 (e.g., a room at a time) would get costly!
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On 11/28/2015 9:39 AM, Arthur Conan Doyle wrote:

Non-dimmable bulbs in a dimmer circuit often consume *more* power (as well as almost ALWAYS forcing less efficient operation!) when used with dimmers that are "inappropriate"!
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Don Y wrote:

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Yes. It's called a shunt.
You jes lost any creds you may have ever had.
nb
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On 11/28/2015 11:11 AM, notbob wrote:

No, dimmers don't work with "shunts". The problem with CFL/LED "ballasts" is that they don't represent nice resistive loads -- like the incandescents for which legacy dimmers were created (and still in use).
See the 'scope traces at: <http://sound.westhost.com/articles/incandescent.htm#wfm (N.B. the vertical scale has been changed by a factor of *5* from the "non-dimmer" example to the "dimmer" example that appears below it.
[The rest of the page is probably worth reading -- if you're technically inclined. E.g., the table that appears a bit above the cited photos if you like to see numbers instead of graphs]

Hmmm... something about "real life" comes to mind...
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On 11/27/2015 8:19 PM, bob_villain wrote:

So far, I'm liking the LED. Nice bright lighting.
--
Maggie

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Uncle Monster posted for all of us...

You know Unc you left a big opening here to make a crude remark. But I ain't taking it. I am reformed. Who knows what will happen in the next ten seconds, my attention span.
--
Tekkie

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On 11/27/2015 5:31 PM, notbob wrote:

I've got all LED bulbs in my bathroom, now, where I've added shelves to put plants on. I turn them on and it's like being outside on a sunny day with no clouds in the sky. I read that LED are just as good for growing plants, plus, LED blue and red bulbs are also good for plants, so, I'll see for myself how it does this winter.
I bought some carnivorous plants to keep amongst the other plants and they've already caught some tiny gnats. (venus flytrap, and octopus plant [sundew]). LOVE them both. One of the octopus plants is blooming pretty pink flowers.
--
Maggie

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Muggles wrote: ...

ages ago i kept venus flytraps in a 10 gallon terrarium and they bloomed. did you ever think of how venus flytraps would be pollinated? :) they have yellow flowers on top of a stalk 8+" high.
if you do get flower stalks they can be hand pollinated with a little brush and then the seeds will eventually come along. they look like tiny little eggplants. to get them to grow from seed can be a challenge. i had a bunch of them coming along and went on vacation and left my sister in charge of making sure they didn't dry out. heh. came home to shrivelled little nothings... poor tykes.
songbird
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On 11/28/2015 10:56 AM, songbird wrote:

I've had flytraps to bloom before, but I didn't try to pollinate the blooms. The octopus plants have about 10 blooms on the stalk and it's blooming from the bottom bloom going up the stalk one at a time. I can try to pollinate the blooms as they open the same way and see how that works.
--
Maggie

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