A couple days ago I a pack of 3 GE energy smart bulbs. These things have
mercury in them, and they give off a somewhat acrid odor when lit.
Anybody else experineced or heard about this and whether it's a matter for
There are things that could smell bad besides the mercury. Maybe a
web search on acrid smell mercury would say if it could be the
mercury. I sort of doubt it. Maybe the folks in sci.chemistry would
The ozone-producing wavelength of mercury is 184.9 nm. The glass bulb
blocks that wavelength bigtime, should any of it fail to be absorbed by
As for mercury - I have had experience with it, and did not notice any
The odor sounds to me like a by-product of manufacturing either the
plastic ballast housing or the circuit board. It may be an incompletely
polymerized plastic ingredient or it may be a cleaning agent.
- Don Klipstein ( firstname.lastname@example.org)
I would return them, If it was mercury the bulb would not light as the
gas would have escaped, the glass is sealed. Mercury I dont believe
has a smell you would notice. Its the electronics and it will probably
fail soon or maybe its residue on the electronics package.
Mercury is odorless. Sniff elsewhere for the problem.
Recently, as I reached up to install a similar light one morning, I detected
a smell similar to buttercups. Turns out the odor was emanating from a lump
of green clay in my armpit.
I would not be concerned unless odor did not go away and annoyed you.
Then you take them back.
Could be a finish, label or contaminate on exterior of bulb that is
pyrolizing off. I would not worry about the mercury as even if it
were a contaminate, there would not be enough heat to vaporize it.
At my place of work here in Germany, we've had three very cheap energy
saving bulbs in a lamp for months, and boy, every time these bulbs
have been burning for more than a fe minutes, I, as well as a few
coworkers with sensitive noses, can smell a kind of "chemical" odor
when standing close to them.
It's probably whatever kind of chemical was used on the little circuit
boards embedded in these bulbs.
On the other hand, I've had a more expensive brand of such bulbs in
use here at home, and they do not only produce a more friendly light,
but they are also completely "oderless".
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