If you are a fan of standard incandescent light bulbs, you might want to buy some soon. 100 watt bulbs are gone, and 75 and 60 watt bulbs will be gone from store shelves very soon.
But the good news is you don't have to switch to fluorescent lights anymore, because prices are falling on another alternative: LED bulbs.
Consumers Never Warmed to CFL
Almost everyone has now made the move to CFL, or compact fluorescent, bulbs, especially since the price is now down to almost $1 a bulb.
But very few people who buy them really like them. Homeowners like Tom Heim worry about mercury leaking out if they break.
"It broke right here, and broke at the other end, the base," he said about a year ago, showing a CFL that shattered without anyone touching it.
At Home Depot, lighting specialist Roger Gabel explained that consumers have never warmed to those cool CFLs.
"A lot of people don't like the color, they don't like the light it gives off, they don't like the shape, the weird look," Gabel explained. "People like the familiar shape of the incandescent light bulb, that they have known for years, and that they are comfortable with."
LED Bulbs a New Solution
But there's now good news if you're not fans of those squiggly bulbs: stores are rapidly switching to LED bulbs for home use.
They look like old fashioned incandescent bulbs, but will save energy and last for as long as 20 years.
"It's built to look like a regular bulb, it's a shape people are comfortable with," Gabel said. "Everybody likes this bulb, because it's what people grew up with."
Until this year, LED's had a big drawback: they cost about $25 each. Despite the savings they promise, many people refused to buy a bulb that cost as much as the lamp they put it in.
But good news: a new led bulb from Cree sold at Home Depot and other stores costs just $9, a groundbreaking price point for LED technology.
And prices are expected to fall even more in the months ahead, with some predicting a $9 Phillips LED bulb by later this year. GE has lowered the price of some of its LED bulbs to $13.
They look like standard bulbs, and give off a warm, cream colored light.
So if you are someone who absolutely hates CFL bulbs, especially in your bedroom or living room, the good news is you now have some great alternatives.
And that way you don't waste your money.
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