Energy-Efficient Light Bulbs – What Are They
Energy-efficient light bulbs, also known as compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), are gas-discharge lamps that use electricity to excite mercury vapor. The excited mercury atoms generate short-wave ultraviolet light that then causes a phosphor to fluoresce, creating visible light. Compact fluorescent lamps, convert electrical power into beneficial light more efficiently than incandescent lamps.
CFLs – How They Work
The efficiency of compact fluorescent lamps viz-a-viz the classical incandescent lamps can be figured out on how they generate light. With incandescent bulbs, the electricity passes through a filament inside the bulb. The heat from the electricity then makes the filament white-hot, producing light. The trouble with this method is that up to 90% of the energy used to light the filament escapes as heat, making them very inefficient. For this reason, incandescent light bulbs are tremendously hot when you touch them while they are turned on. Energy-efficient light bulbs on the other hand, have a much more efficient process for generating the same amount of light. As an alternative of using heat to create light, CFLs contain a gas that makes invisible ultraviolet (UV) light when the gas is excited by electricity. The UV light hits the white coating inside the fluorescent bulb and the coating changes it into light. This process needs far less electricity to generate the exact amount of light, making compact fluorescent lamps much more energy-efficient than incandescent bulbs.
CFLs – The Economic Side
The use of energy-efficient light bulbs with high frequency ballasts can help you save up to 75% electrical energy consumption for lighting. Studies had revealed that lighting accounts for up to 20% of the average home’s electric bill. That being the case, if you switch at least 25% of the incandescent light bulbs you use most often in your home to energy-efficient light bulbs you can slice a considerable chunk off of the amount of electricity you presently use to light your home. While CFLs can cost up to 5 times the price of an incandescent light bulb, in the long run, they end up being less costly once energy savings and replacement costs are factored into the equation.
CFLs and Global Warming
As stated earlier, energy-efficient light bulbs use up to 75% less electricity than their incandescent counterparts. Since electric power plants produce CO2 emissions by burning coal, petroleum, and natural gas, using CFLs also accounts for 75% less CO2 emissions than incandescent light bulbs. Not only will compact fluorescent lamps save you money on your electric bill each month, they are also a great way to lower your carbon footprint, which as a result, helps reduce the effects of global warming.