Future looks dim for incandescent light bulbs

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The future's looking dim for some old fashioned light bulbs. Starting next year, manufacturers will no longer make the 75-watt incandescent light bulb. This comes after lawmakers phased out the 100 watt bulb this year.

"Sure it'll save energy so I think that's good," said Missy Benson.

Saving energy is exactly what the government wants people like Benson and her husband to do. The phase out of the 75-watt incandescent light bulb in 2013 is part of the government's goal to become more energy efficient.

New standards require light bulbs to be at least 25-percent more efficient, but for many the price people must pay isn't always perfect - at first. Six 75-watt light bulbs cost about four dollars. Four compact fluorescent lights, or CFL's, cost more than double.

"But at the same time you'll use less wattage so you're going to save the energy and its going to be the same brightness and everything," said Home Depot Supervisor Theresa Hankins. "In some cases it might be even brighter."

Hankins says fluorescent lights last roughly seven to ten years longer and pay for themselves in three to six months.

"So we don't have to replace them so we don't live in such a throw-away society," said Benson.

Hankins says one of the biggest concerns among people who buy fluorescent light bulbs is the high mercury content but The Home Depot has a recycling center inside anytime you need to throw yours out.

The Home Depot says even though 75-watt bulbs will begin to phase out, they will continue to sell the ones they have until they're all sold out. In 2014, the government will also do away with 60 and 40-watt incandescent bulbs.

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