Why use Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFLs) in the winter if they don’t help heat your home?

While incandescent light bulbs produce both heat and light, it is important to keep in mind they are both an inefficient heat source and an inefficient light source. Incandescent light bulbs use only about 10% of the energy they consume to produce light, and the other 90% is given off as heat, whereas ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs use 75% less energy and last 10 times longer, while producing the same amount of light (lumens) that you are used to receiving from an incandescent product.

Although incandescent light bulbs uses 90% of the energy consumed to produce heat, it is not efficiently producing this heat. First, the filament is in essence a resistance heater, which is far less efficient in terms of total energy consumption than an oil or gas furnace or electric heat pump. Furthermore, light bulbs are not designed to be used for heating and they therefore lack the design to effectively distribute the heat within your living space. By using your primary heat source for heating, and ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs for lighting, you will save energy, money, and limit the emission of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

More on ENERGY STAR qualified light bulbs.
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Topic Information
  • Topic #: 23002-25171
  • Date Created: 12/4/2007
  • Last Modified Since: 11/29/2011
  • Viewed: 7764
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