Gallery: 2014 Incandescent Bulb Ban Got You Worried? Here are Some Ligh...

Halogen lights provide the closest color temperature to incandescent bulbs, but only last for 1,000 hours and consume approximately 43 watts compared to a 60-watt incandescent light. On the plus side, halogens are also the cheapest of the bunch.

Before you start thinking the U.S. government is going to kick down your door looking for incandescent bulbs like they’re drugs – that’s not the case. The lighting ban isn’t a true ban; you’re still free to buy them in stores and use incandescents at home. The U.S. is simply stopping the import and domestic manufacture of 40W and 60W bulbs, similar to the previous phase out of 100W and 75W bulbs.

Furthermore, incandescent bulbs will still be in stores, albeit with a dwindling supply. The availability of these bulbs should go on for a good part of next year. When the shelves run empty, homeowners will be able to use a multitude of other lighting solutions including halogen, compact fluorescent lights (CFL), and the new fangled LED light bulbs.

Here’s a breakdown of the alternatives: halogen lights provide the closest color temperature to incandescent lamps but only last for 1,000 hours and consume approximately 43 watts compared to a 60-watt incandescent light. On the plus side halogens are also the cheapest of the bunch.

CFL blubs, meanwhile, last considerably longer 10,000 hours and consume 13 watts for the equivalent of a 60-watt incandescent bulb. CFLs also have drawbacks as they’re priced slightly higher and contain trace amounts of mercury that has to be recycled at a proper facility. Lastly the light they produce is cooler, tinting rooms in a slight blue rather than warm, orange tinged incandescent bulbs.

Homeowners looking to future proof their home should look to LED lights. Although they are the most expensive lighting solution, prices have been going down steadily throughout the year. LED lights also provide the near white illumination and are rated to last the longest, up to 20 years.

Lead image © Alessandro

Infographics by Jill Fehrenbacher


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  1. altweddle January 12, 2014 at 4:58 pm

    …LED’s are they way to go; you may have to provide for them in you will…

  2. scicdb3 December 19, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    LEDs cost more but will repay themselves many times over time.
    Tenants and leasers should insist that LED bulbs are installed, including LED equivalent T8 bulbs to fluorescent fittings.
    OR, would do well to replace as many lamps as they can for the duration of their lease, re-installing the old lamps when they leave.
    If it pays it stays…

  3. Mark Potochnik December 18, 2013 at 5:21 am

    Whether the old incandescent bulbs are working or not they go straight to the garbage. Either CFLs or LEDs for me. Have 2 CFLs in hallways, and one 3 way light bulb in my wife’s light. Otherwise everything is 6000K LEDs. Lower power bills than 5 years ago.

  4. lighthouse10 December 17, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    the halogens and such incandescents won’t be allowed on EISA 2007 law tier 2 2014-2017 backstop final rule of 45 lumen per W equating to CFL standard requirement…

    I think, Kevin, there is a bigger picture here too?
    Why Ban Light Bulbs anyway… or Buildings, Cars, Toilets, Showers and much else as part of a society consumption reduction desire?

    Apart from doubtful eventual savings and compromised performance and usability, even if it is still assumed that products need to be targeted in the overall perspective of resource politics, then alternative information, taxation and in particular market policies should be considered before product bans.

    This applies particularly to electrical products, only indirectly coupled to any energy source use, and in turn particularly to targeted light bulbs, which from their main evening-night time use really only consume small amounts of off-peak surplus capacity electricity anyway, as also referenced (on website)

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