Recently I purchased some of those new small compact fluorescent bulbs
that can replace standard incandescent light bulbs, and on the
packaging there was a warning about not using them in an "enclosed,
recessed" fixture. Does this mean they can't be used in a ceiling
fixture that is covered with glass? If not, why not? What's the
I have used them in recesed fixtures with success. See if they are warm whites
or cool whites. Sometimes the heat stays in and actually causes the fliiments
to burn out real fast but with cool white compacts I never had a problem. They
look weird in ceiling fixtures to be honest though so make sure they aren't
sticking out and looking ugly.
Tacking on my 2 cents worth...I think part of the reason they
reccommend against it is that they do NOT do well at all when
used upside down. I'm sure it's a heat issue. I tried using
one in my basement, the typical screwed-to-the-underside-of-
the-joist ceramic fixture with a pull chain, and I went through
3 of them before it finally sunk in. Coincidentally, I've had
one in an enclosed fixture above my kitchen sink that's going
on two years old now and doing just fine, but it's oriented
-horizontaly-. I don't think any of that is by chance,
that's how they behave.
Baisez-les s'ils ne peuvent pas prendre une plaisanterie
Actually, I've had them in my basement for years, in the typical
ceiling sockets with no problems. We use our basement as a
basement (laundry, workshop, storage, etc.). The lights go on
and off many times per day. I think I have only changed out one
I-zheet M'drurz wrote:
I had one installed hanging upside down in a pot light on my front porch
for 10 years. It was on approximately 12 hours per day for all that
time. It never burned out--it failed when the bulb finally separated
from the base. Of course, it could have been a fluke.
Does the literature on the bulbs say not to hang them?
What the heck are you talking about. There is no upside down....
They work in any direction. Every fixture in my home has them, both
sealed and exposed. I also use them in my unheated garage and they
even light in winter when the temps are way below freezing. The
garage and basement ones are in those porcelain fixtures.
I dont see any reason not to use them in a recessed fixture if the
fixture was made for standard indecesant bulbs. These florescents are
MUCH cooler than indecesant bulbs.
One note, in my unheated garage they take longer to get fully bright
in the cold weather.
I am sure I recall seeing some CF lamps marked as being for base-up use
only. Perhaps not all are.
On 11/06/03 02:52 am Generic Male Homosapien put fingers to keyboard and
launched the following message into cyberspace:
Yep. And I was just relaying my results from using identical
bulbs in 2 different situations. I've heard others talk of the
same problem, so I know it wasn't a fluke.
Incandesants are passive devices, a piece of wire in a glass
holder. Compact flourescents have active electronics housed
in the base, they are subject to damage by heat.
FYI, the porcelain fixture that toasted 3 for me, I had it on
24/7 in a semi-heated basement, so it never cooled down like
one you use occasionally.
Baisez-les s'ils ne peuvent pas prendre une plaisanterie
Everything i've read about CF bulbs says that they can be used in any
orientation. Though I'm willing to believe that there are some out
that i've never heard of which need to be mounted in a particular
i've had CF bulbs in porcelain fixtures in my basement, upside down,
for a couple years with no problem. They're not on 24/7.
On Thu, 06 Nov 2003 01:52:45 -0600, Generic Male Homosapien
Incandescent bulbs will get MUCH hotter but they are also very
tolerant of heat. The ballast of a CF has electronics that can be
damaged by heat. It will shorten the life of the bulb. So while a CF
is much cooler, put a couple of them in an enclosed fixture and
they'll generate enough heat (still less heat than an incandescent by
its self) to damage the electronics.
The base of a CFL contains the ballast for the bulb. The ballast has
a number of electrical components in it. If you use the bulb in an
enclosed fixture or any fixture where airflow around the bulb is
restricted, the heat generated by the lamp has nowhere to go. This
will cause the ballast to get hotter than it should, and will cause it
to fail prematurely.
I think the key words here are "enclosed and recessed". I agree with what
others have said about not operating them in a tightly closed fixtures.
Also, the manufacturer may just have been trying to make sure he CYAd
I've been using them for years in my basement, garage and closets where
they're sticking down from regular porcelain sockets, so there's plenty of
airflow around them. I've also got them in open topped ceiling fixtures
which hang slightly below the ceiling surface, so again there's plenty of
room for convection to move the around them. Haven't had to change one out
yet, and I get a little less frustrated when the kids leave them on.
(None of my forbearers was named Edison) :-)
I modified the pair of entry fixtures alongside our front door by
replacing the three candelabra sockets and bulbs inside each of them with
a single standard sized socket and a 13 watt CFL. Doesn't look as sexy as
those three little flame shaped 25 watt bulbs did, but its a damn site
easier to maintain, I was constantly dragging out the stepladder and
scratching my wrists changing out one of those little bulbs about once a
month. The CFLs have been in almost two years now, so I think it was worth
the hour or so it took to make the conversion. Those CFLs are a little
slow brightening up on turnon in the winter, but WTF, they work.
So at the Mainiacs say, "Pretty is as pretty does."
Jeff Wisnia (W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
"If you can keep smiling when things go wrong, you've thought of someone
to place the blame on."
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