#1 By: Maggie Koerth-Baker, January 17th, 2014 12:04
#2 By: Jeff, January 17th, 2014 12:27
Do not worry about it. Having had long conversations with energy suppliers this legislation will happen. Otherwise it's going to be rolling brownouts for all of the nation. Right now we have enough early adopters that we're okay for a few years, and getting inexpensive flay panels into more houses has been a huge help.
But there basically aren't enough energy plants being created to keep up with increased demand, so we'll be right back here in a few years. Just think of it as giving the LED guys a few more years to get things right and there won't be backlash like there is against CFLs.
#3 By: David Forbes, January 17th, 2014 12:27
That was a Communist plot to make everyone buy those fancy Chinese lightbulbs with circuit boards in them. God intended us to use incandescent bulbs, containing proper tungsten wire from the tungsten mines of Rhodesia.
#4 By: Tribune1984, January 17th, 2014 12:44
You should make congress generate its own electricity with treadmills for congress critters.
#5 By: Jeff, January 17th, 2014 12:49
Because they're there too often now? The minute you make it difficult for them all they're going to do is have "endless meeting with the constituents."
#6 By: Val A Lindsay II, January 17th, 2014 13:24
So we have lightbulbs that give what would be 60 watts of light using 14 watts of power. I've switched, a lot of other people have and will continue to do so. Do we really need legislation? It's a question of ignorance on my part...
#7 By: Tribune1984, January 17th, 2014 13:36
You though i meant voluntary time of a treadmill not forced with possible angry ravenous beasts on it as well?
#8 By: Tribune1984, January 17th, 2014 13:39
I would guess most businesses don't need legislation but consumers might. I honestly have no idea.
The local taxis are probably 90% hybrid vehicles and have been for years. I assume this is because of the cost of gas (and any incentives) making it a prudent business decision. (North of your border where gas is expensive)
#9 By: Phillip Hallam Baker, January 17th, 2014 13:43
The budget deal will not unwind the ban that has already gone into effect. All it does is stop the Administration spending any money on enforcement. So the companies that have already dismantled their legacy light bulb plants could build new ones to make inefficient light bulbs again if they accept the risk that the next budget does not have money for enforcement in it. Which of course it could if the Democrats take the House and firms that were violating the ban would face huge fines.
Who wants to risk huge multi-million dollar fines for what is an ultra-low margin business?
Its a stupid action to pander to some very stupid people. At this point CFLs are just as obsolete as incandescents. LEDs are more efficient than either and give better light. I have saved about $1000 a year in electricity switching to all LEDs. Paid back in 18 months.
The Bush era requirements weren't even very good ones. They were set when the alternative was CFLs that cut energy cost by a little. LEDs virtually wipe the energy use out and never need replacement, (though the mains adapters can fail but that issue will go away in time with low voltage schemes).
So the net effect of all this is that the manufacturers have already upgraded their plant and will make more efficient light bulbs but there has been great publicity about blocking the energy saving regulations. So regulation is coming back just as soon as Republicans lose the house which looks like 2016, possibly earlier. And the new regulations will require much bigger cuts and take effect sooner.
#10 By: Jeff, January 17th, 2014 13:52
I think you'd be surprised at how and when people switched to using lights of less power. I'm willing to bet a lot switched to CFLs when they came out but then realized that the shape was wrong for some shades, they took too long to warm up, were unusable in some fixtures, didn't dim the way incandescents did and then these people switched back to a bulb that cost five times less at the initial outlay and worked the way they wanted it to.
It's not ignorance on your part, it's that you found you don't mind these foibles. I personally have not found a suitable replacement for the incandescent/haologen look in the bedroom at the end of the day. It's just the color temperature and rendering I find the most pleasant when I'm winding down.
But the long story is that there are a lot of people, probably ones that you know, that just do not care enough about light bulbs to do anything than pick the option they've always used when they go to the store. The trend was curving down anyway, all legislation did was help it get to the bottom faster and save a lot of energy in the meantime.
#11 By: Jeff, January 17th, 2014 13:59
Interestingly enough, they didn't really dismantle them, they just don't make as many. But we will always have incandescent/halogen bulbs. As of right now you can still get 130V lamps and "rough use" incandescents. Or even "olde-fashioned" versions. And halogens, which are the same as incandecents but use a halogen gas instead of the vacuum around the filament, are always going to be around. I see CFL going away before halogens.
As for the better light, you're simply wrong by any applicable measurement. no LED has a CRI (Color Rendering Index) of 100% yet. The warm spectrum is still not fully met by LEDs due to the loss of efficiency in the phosphors. You might feel that the light is "better," or suitable for your uses, but the LED color spectrum is still definitely missing some values.
#12 By: David Forbes, January 17th, 2014 14:02
LEDs and CFLs have similar efficiency. The LED may get a bit better in time, if some company decides to standardize on a new fixture style that will take advantage of the unidirectional nature of LEDs. In the meantime, the manufacturers have to design for retrofit, which is not easy nor pleasant for the designers.
#13 By: Marja Erwin, January 17th, 2014 14:06
I understand that leds have strobing issues too? Although for me, the led issues haven't been noticeable, and the cfl issues have only been noticeable as they are burning out.
#14 By: Charlie, January 17th, 2014 14:36
Legislate energy efficiency and not required technology.
Legislation that mandates technologies is too inherently corruptible - and it's even worse under "intellectual property" regimes. Buy a congressman and make your patented technology a mandate, then you can make enough money to buy the Presidency and the Supreme Court.
I'd rather we imposed a tax based on the inverse of lumens per watt and charge it directly to the consumer. Right now LEDs would not be not taxed, CFLs slightly taxed, and incandescents heavily taxed. Then that big ol' invisible hand the libertarians are always nattering on about will do your work for you, and the government can stop taxing income. Win.
#15 By: Brian Sizemore, January 17th, 2014 14:55
This is coming from the guy who sees strobing way too easily. Yes and no. Most replacement bulbs will be fine for the vast majority of people, I can tolerate just about everyone I've seen. But I would say if you find fluorescent tubes to strobe/flicker then you might notice the flicker in some LEDs as well. For me I don't see the light itself flicker as much as a subtle flicker on the objects that are lit. They are in no way shape or form as "flickerful" as Christmas LEDs.
#16 By: Brian Sizemore, January 17th, 2014 14:58
I don't mind the forced move to basically a halogen design for a lot of standard incandescent bulbs, but I do question where this all ends. I live in a house built in 1910 at what point are we going to just say I'm shit out of luck and either have to spend six figures and completely strip and rebuild to more modern insulation designs or just bulldoze it? I'm all for saving energy and baby/simple steps are fine, but at some point I don't want to see everyone driving 50hp econoboxes just because.
#17 By: Phillip Hallam Baker, January 17th, 2014 15:28
You know when you are on the Web it is almost always a bad idea to express surprise that someone does not agree with you and then attribute it to ignorance or failure of understanding.
The CFLs were always obnoxious but fluorescent lighting is ubiquitous in Asia even in upscale homes. The preference for incandescents in the US and Europe is largely due to familiarity. LEDs can be bought in any color range but the ones stocked in Lowes and Home Depot tend to be a little limited. In one room I just switched from some first generation Philips LED bulbs that were designed for a warm incandescent color to some Feit lamps with a cool white cast from CostCo because that is what I am now used to and I prefer the bright daylight balanced light.
If you really want to be really specific you can get the Huey lights and they will emit any color you like. But the lights I have are pretty close to daylight balance. As verified with a color analyzer.
#18 By: Phillip Hallam Baker, January 17th, 2014 15:33
LEDs themselves don't strobe as they are DC devices. But some LED bulbs strobe if you put them on a dimmer that isn't designed for the bulb's AC to DC conversion circuit.
It is much less of an issue now than it was at the start.
#19 By: Jeff, January 17th, 2014 16:11
Color temperature is not color rendering. I am referring to how well color is rendered under a source as based on the full spectrum the sun puts out. This is measured by determining the spectral power distribution of a source in addition to measuring it against a series of color chips.
"White" LEDs begin as a royal blue LED. They use the ultraviolet spectrum to excite phosphors either on the chip or remotely mounted (similar to the Philips lamp, with the orange/yellow illuminated pads). These phosphors then emit "white" light. Cooler color temperatures are more efficient, as the phosphors are required to do less work. But the very nature of exciting phosphors (like a fluorescent lamp) has always resulted in a lower CRI than simply heating up a wire.
#20 By: Allison Moon, January 17th, 2014 19:27
I've never felt more like a raging anti-nanny state libertarian than when California took away my dimming lamps. I love nature, but I hate CFLs and the ugly-ass light they emit. Until LEDs look as nice as incandescents, I'm happy living in moral ambiguity.
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