Engineering, Management, Technology Consulting

Changing Bulbs

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Perhaps you are like me and wandered out recently to Home Depot to purchase a replacement bulb. I realized that starting in January the bulb choice was going to change and at Walker Engineering we are always eager to put into practice energy efficiency so I was confident that I was going to purchase a Compact Fluorescent Light (CFL).

What I ran into was indicative of the graphic below showing all the different types that are available today.  And while Mo works daily with the issue of lighting and energy tax credits I was stuck with my prior experience (unsatisfactory bulbs, too white, slow to light) with CFLs and a helpful Home Depot staff unable to explain the Color Rendering Index or the Kelvin Color Temperature scale.

I ran across the article Almost Time to Change the Bulb in the NYTimes and it did address many of my experiences.  Mo adds the advice to this authors that it is best to test through the bulbs you like and are going to use in a room or area prior to selecting paint.  Also painting a test swatch is very important now as the color perception you and others have is going to be affected by the color rendering and your own background.

If you were stymied by being unable to get a warm look to your wood floors with water based floor coverings, something that matches the fading polyurethane you may have grown up with, this choice is going to really challenge you.

Get a notebook out and place it in the cupboard with your replacement bulbs, write down your choice and the detailed specs on the bulb and your comments and observations on the replacement.  Like wine, you are going to forget what you liked and disliked by the time you do the next bulb.  And as Bob Tedeschi points out, the manufacturers are still working on new types of bulbs.

The question is not how many people does it take to screw in a light bulb, but how many does it take to buy a light bulb.