2014 brings new energy efficient lighting standards that’ll change the way we light our homes (Image: U.S. DOE)
As you may have heard, January 1, 2014 marks the final phase-out of traditional 40 and 60-watt incandescent light bulbs. And although this sounds intimidating, there’s no need to panic! Here’s a quick guide to help you make a smooth transition.
Why are light bulbs changing?
In 2007 the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) was signed into law in an effort to increase energy efficiency standards in the US. Among its provisions was the gradual phase-out of the inefficient incandescent light bulbs we all know and love.
I still own incandescent bulbs. Can I continue to use them in my house?
Yes. Just like 100W and 75W bulbs that were phased-out over the last two years, you are not banned from having or using 40W and 60W incandescent bulbs. The phase-out simply applies to the manufacturing and importing of inefficient general service bulbs in the US, not their use or purchase. In fact, even though the act forces production to stop on January 1st, 2014, incandescent light bulbs will still be available in stores until supplies run out.
Are any light bulbs exempt?
In this case there are many exceptions to the rule- 22 to be precise. Specialty incandescent bulbs such as 3-way bulbs, appliance bulbs and candelabra-based incandescent bulbs are exempt from the EISA. These bulbs will remain legal to manufacture and bring into the country.
View a full list of exempt bulbs from the U.S. DOE Here
What about the light bulbs in my ceiling fan?
Almost all Hunter ceiling fans are equipped with candelabra-based incandescent bulbs (one of the exemptions) or energy efficient CFL bulbs - both of which will continue to be available in stores.
What light bulb should I buy now?
There are numerous energy efficient light bulb options to choose from. In order to find the best bulb to meet your needs, there are a few factors to consider: the amount of light needed, the color of light desired, the bulb’s lifespan and your budget.
For help choosing a light bulb, visit the NRDC’s Light Bulb Buying Guide
For additional information regarding the light bulb ban, visit these helpful resources: