Lightbulbs - out with the old, in with the new

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Don't let the lights go out.  2014 begins the phase out of a certain type of light bulb in the U.S.

After January 1, stores will no longer be restocking their shelves with 60 and 40 watt incandescent light bulbs.

According to a survey of Americans they were just as surprised.  Almost 60 percent said they didn't know the country's top-selling 60 and 40 watt incandescent bulbs are going to be discontinued.

So far, it seems a lot of people are already stocking up, since stores have put up signs letting customers know about the change, sales of those bulbs are up.

This is all part of the government's plan to phase-out traditional lighting; the energy efficiency law requires these bulbs can no longer be made or brought into the U.S.

It all began in January 2012, with the phase out of the 100 watt incandescent bulb, followed by the 75 watt bulb.  This change, however, is not going to happen overnight.

There are reports that stores like Home Depot could have enough of the traditional bulbs in stock to last well into the New Year.

The new law states the incandescent bulb just does not make the cut for energy efficiency, as they wast 90 percent of their energy as heat rather than light.

Although some members of Congress have tried to repeal this law, lighting companies are actually meeting the challenge – coming out with new, more efficient bulbs and at lower prices than before.

Alternatives to traditional lighting include LED lights that use about 75 percent less energy; and compared to traditional 40 and 60 watt bulbs, which last on average one year, LED bulbs could last up to 25 years.

The choice is the public's – stock up on the old standbys, incandescent or spend more money for a newer longer lasting alternative bulb.

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