PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – If you have been shopping for light bulbs recently, you may have noticed some things are changing.
Specifically, you’re seeing fewer and fewer incandescent light bulbs on the shelves.
Just about a year from now will mark the beginning of the end for incandescent altogether and many consumers aren’t happy about it.
John Codman is stocking up because of a new federal law that most people don’t even know about.
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 raises efficiency standards for light bulbs. That means, the old energy-inefficient incandescents won’t pass.
At the beginning of 2012, 100-watt incandescent light bulbs will be phased out. In 2013, the 75-watt bulbs will be phased out with the 40-watt bulbs being phased out in 2014.
For Codman, it’s not so much the hassle of having to replace his light bulbs as it is about the federal government telling him what kind of lighting he can and can’t use in his home.
“I’ve looked at the Constitution and I can’t see that they have any authority about what kind of light bulbs we’re using,” Codman said.
The controversy stems from newer bulbs like the compact fluorescent light bulb. They don’t light up instantly and if you break one, you have mercury to clean up.
However, all may not be lost.
There’s a company in Massachusetts that says it’s leading the way toward the future of light bulbs with LEDs.
“The LEDs are 80 percent more efficient and they will last 25 times longer,” Dr. Makarand Chipalkatti with Sylvania said.
LEDs are just now entering the market for use in homes. They’re mercury-free, light up instantly. and they’re dimmable.
Of course, there is a catch and it’s an expensive one at that.
LED bulbs can run as much as $20, though prices are expected to drop.
As for Codman, he’s no light bulb snob. He does have some CFLs in his house and he said he’s even tried the LEDs. He just prefers the incandescent light bulbs in his home.