I have a modern touch lamp in the lounge which I was actually given as a birthday present from my sister. It had a standard bulb in it but when it finally gave up I realised that the only bulb I could now get was an energy saving bulb. I bought this Phillips Softone energy saving 8W bulb from B&Q for £1.05. I did think that it was quite expensive for one bulb but then I read that it is supposed to last for an average of 10,000 hours with 5000 switches so I should get my moneys worth out of it.
The wattage of the bulb is 8w and it is energy class A. The light output is listed as 700 lumens which means nothing to me, but I can say that although it is a soft tone it does give a good bright light and seems to light up more or less straight away, unlike a different make of energy saving bulb which I have which seems to give a very dull light for some time after being switched on. It is a screw fitting so is easy to screw down into the lamp and then twist to secure the bulb.
It has a 5 year guarantee however I have not made a note of when I have bought it to take it back if it doesn't last that long and to be fair I think I would just buy another bulb if I needed to. I think that this bulb is a good quality bulb which does give a bright but soft light and it comes recommended by me.
Ah, the common household lightbulb. Useful for erm lighting things! In the energy conscious society in which we now live, we tend to go for the longlife bulbs. This is an all round good choice for those who want to be energy efficient. A simple eight watt bulb, which is supposed to be the equivalent of a forty watt bulb.
We use them in the lounge on the Ikea uplighters, you know those things that look like lamposts? The light that the bulbs give off is not quite as stark as higher watt bulbs. I would describe it as subtle and genial. For lighting a room like a lounge though, these are ideal, where you require slightly softer lighting. These bulbs do light up the room, but give way to a pleasant ambience.
The bulbs continue to burn bright through their life span (which is up to eight years.) Ours have been in the lounge for about two years to date and going strong. If you need to watch tv or chill, then this lighting is great. Not so effective in the kitchen, where I prefer a stronger light to really see what I am doing.
The screw cap bulb means you can use it in most sockets and the rounded curvy shape is natural looking and blends in with most furnishings. The colour of the lighting is pale yellow/white with soft tones. It will not hurt the eyes nor will it ever get ridiculously hot, though I advise not touching it anyway after a few hours.
The recycled packaging it comes in is another small plus when it comes to being energy conscious. The bulbs can be bought from all leading supermarkets and I think we paid about two pounds or so. You can buy individual bulbs or sets as well. Very useful for ambience and mood setting and for general household lighting.
I was really uncomfortable with 'ordinary' energy-saving CFL lightbulbs - they look awkward, protrude from older lamps & make my eyes hurt!
So I was really excited when I saw these in the local Baumax... & had to check them out!
The 8W lightbulb is an equivalent to a 'normal' conventional lightbulb of 40 Watt.
The packaging says it produces the light of 380 lumen.
It is shaped very pretty (in my opinion!) & basically looks almost like a conventional lightbulb! a bit more 'square' maybe..
It fits into a normal lamp..
'Softone' means it's supposed to be 'softer' than the other harsh energy-saving lighbulbs, & that is why I bought it.
Unfortunately, I have to report this one hurt my eyes too.. (Apparently I do sit too much in front of the computer all day!!)
So if you expect really soft light - this ISN'T it!!
My Dad complains it's not strong or 'sharp' enough for him to read by it, though.. (He sees a bit poorly from up close, & is sometimes too vain to wear glasses!) So it's not to go into the kitchen as a main source of lighting!
Basically, it would be good for things 'inbetween' - where not very strong & not very low light be desired...
Also, this still contains some mercury (1.41 mg) which is a toxin, so it's probably best to not have it in a room with carpeting, especially if it's non-removable carpeting.. (just in case, if it broke..)
Their spec site says it's 'warm white' but it doesn't feel very 'warm' to me.. just 'white'..
It is not dimmable - not suitable for dimming & electronic switches..
The packaging also says, 'The natural movement of internal components may give a slight rattle sound, this is normal.' (?)
Haven't really used it enough to notice.. (it's waiting in the packaging for a more appropriate location!)
The good thing is it's energy class A (best) & has a lifetime of 8 years (the spec site says 'Life to 50% failures' is 8000 hours..).
The packaging says it uses 5 times less electricity compared to 'a 1000 hr soft colour bulb of similar light output'. (I'm thinking this is the 40W against 8W comparison..)
I'm quite happy with the packaging, as it's recycled carton. Maybe a bit less colors could be used for printing on it - it's more difficult to recycle paper or carton that is glossy or has many colors.. (& if you burn it bad heavy metals from colors may fly into the air..) not sure about the exact colors used though, to be honest..
Still wondering about end-of-product life of this beauty though.. It mustn't be thrown into trash (the packaging says!!) & as far as I know stores mainly gather undamaged ones for recycling, what about if it breaks? seems some further research needed for that..
The Phillips website says it's great to use when lamps can't be replaced & I'd agree to this - the long CFL bulbs hanging out of lamps just look clumsy, while this ones fit nicely into lamps adapted for older conventional incandescent lamps too!
They recommend temperature +10 to +45°C for most even output of light.. but say it ignites flawlessly from -20°C up. (Haven't really tested that yet though either :))
'Light output after 1 minute' is said to be 80%, so I guess this is probably faster than some CFL bulbs that start very slowly too..
'Closed fixtures are required for outdoor applications' - not quite sure what this means (closed lamps? and why?) but I thought I'd mention it just in case.. (& maybe someone else will know..?)
The packaging says, 'Made in Poland' (hope they respect safety measures, working with mercury etc.) while the company 'Philips Lighting' is from the Netherlands.
It does feel good to support European products.. (as local as possible)
Not sure of the exact travel (or CO2-emissions) involved in getting the bulb into my hands, maybe in the future store-owners & manufacturers can see to this too?!
Overall, if you wish for an energy-saving alternative to incandenscent bulbs that looks almost like the conventional lightbulbs - this is it!
Extremely compact covered energy-saving lamp that produces soft white ligh