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It’s Lights Out For Some Incandescent Light Bulbs In 2014

On Jan. 1 40 and 60 watt incandescent light bulbs will be phased out in favor of more energy-efficient bulbs (Credit: CBS 2)

On Jan. 1 40 and 60 watt incandescent light bulbs will be phased out in favor of more energy-efficient bulbs (Credit: CBS 2)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – They’ve been lighting up our lives for years, but now America’s most popular light bulbs are about to become much harder to find.

As CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez reported Monday, beginning Jan. 1 the traditional 60 and 40 watt light bulbs will be faded out of the market place.

The phaseout is part of the 2007 energy efficiency law signed by former President George W. Bush.  The law requires bulbs to meet tighter efficiency standards.

Eros Corpus, owner of Batteries Plus Bulbs in White Plains, told Sanchez that consumers will still have plenty of other light bulbs to choose from that give off the same amount of light but are more energy-efficient.

“The most important thing is there are options to convert to either Halogens, Compact Fluorescents, or the LEDs,” Corpus said.

While the options still on the market may offer the same amount of light and save energy, they also come with a bigger price tag, Sanchez reported.  A 60 watt incandescent bulb costs about 60 cents, compared to an equivalent compact fluorescent light, which costs about $3.50, and a single LED light bulb which can cost as much as $18.

High efficiency light bulbs might be more expensive up front, however, they last longer and are cheaper to operate, Sanchez reported.

You would need 30 incandescent bulbs to last the 20-year lifetime of just one LED bulb.  It would also cost nearly $200 over two decades to operate incandescents, while the LED would cost $21 in the same amount of time, Sanchez said.

John Pugliese removed all incandescent bulbs from his home and said it’s made a difference in his power bill.  “If you just do some of them you don’t see it.  But if you do all your lights, if you have a bigger home it does help.”

The Environmental Protection Agency says if every household replaced just one incandescent with a compact fluorescent light bulb, Americans would save enough energy to light more than 2 million homes for a year.

But if you’re not ready to make the switch just yet, you do have some time.  While the law requires that 60 and 40 watt incandescent bulbs not be manufactured or imported to the United States, retailers can still sell whatever they have in stock.

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