Re: CFL Bulbs: Love 'Em, Hate 'Em, or Both?
I'd certainly agree that the energy savings are worth any minor hassle. Its true that a 100w bulb only burns through 24c a day if your costs are 10c a kw/hr, mine are closer to 13 near me, but still. However, times 365 at my electrical costs and that is $100 a year. I might not leave lights on 24/7, but with my wife staying at home with the kids, usage at night, etc I'd say we probably average out over 150w all the time (when averaged).
So in a year if I used incandescent that it well over $150 a year in electrical usage (about 10% or a little more of my electric bill for the year). Onerous, no, but using CLFs means that my electric bill is about 8% lower then it would be otherwise. The CFLs paid for themselves in less then 6 months.
The slow 'warm up' time annoys me occasionally, but in most rooms starting at only 20% illumination (around abouts) isn't going to be a big deal. The only room where it is really annoying is my basement. Probably in part because of the cooler temperatures down there, but it is really dim at first. Only 2 can lights with 65w equiv. reflector CFLs. I'd love to upgrade it to 3 cans, but it would be a royal pain in the butt as I would need to drill through a lot of ceiling joists and cut up a lot of drywall to do it.
I am hoping the price of LEDs comes down enough that it is worth while to buy a couple of them for those lights (they are the most used in the house as well as my wife and the kids spend most of their day down there, so a little extra energy savings would be nice as well).
Now if only LEDs will come down in price a little, and get a little more efficient (the Philips LEDs that Home Depot near me is carrying are only about 70% as efficient as the CFL reflectors they carry in a warm color temperature).