Boulder City Magazine is a monthly publication full of information about Boulder City and Southern Nevada. Boulder City Magazine features the Boulder City Home Guide, a real estate guide to Boulder City and Southern Nevada.

Home Care
by Scott Sauer
Advanced Structural Inspections

Compact Flourescent Lamps
Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) are becoming a popular alternative to the normal incandescent bulb. They can be found in most stores and have dropped considerably in price as they’ve gained popularity. Although they are still three to ten times more expensive than regular light bulbs, they do provide a longer life expectancy and the same light while using less power.

Fluorescent bulbs require 3 to 4 times less wattage than the comparable incandescent light bulbs, saving up to 75% of the initial lighting energy. The average CFL has a life expectancy of six to fifteen thousand hours, or approximately five years, if used four hours a day. That’s an increase of about 10 times that of the average incandescent. |

However, they are less efficient when used for shorter periods of time. Optimal savings is achieved when used in areas that will require lighting for more than thirty minutes at a time, such as family or living rooms, bedrooms and kitchens.

Since CFLs use about a quarter of the energy of incandescent bulbs, they are a key part of efforts to fight climate change. By requiring less energy to produce an equivalent amount of light, they reduce the amount of fossil fuel usage, and consequently the amount of carbon dioxide generated.

Compact fluorescent lamps do contain trace amounts of mercury. The amount is not large enough to pose a hazard to users. However, it does become a concern at landfills and trash incinerators where the mercury from many bulbs can potentially escape and contribute to air and water pollution.

It is commonly accepted that the positive effects of using compact fluorescent bulbs outweigh the controversy over mercury usage.

So, if you’re looking for a way to go “green” and save energy in your home, consider changing out your old incandescent bulbs with the more efficient CFL. Over time, you will see the benefits.

For more on this or other home care subjects, contact Scott at

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