The dimmer switch is on for the 40- and 60-watt incandescent light bulbs. This follows the 75- and 100-watt bulbs’ route to extinction. Under federal law, 100-watt incandescent bulbs were phased out in 2012, and 75-watt bulbs were phased out this year. Starting Jan. 1, the sale of 40- and 60-watt incandescent bulbs will be banned, except that retailers will be allowed to sell their remaining stock. There are exceptions to the ban for appliance lamps, colored lamps, and certain specialty lamps.
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Gary Hurley, energy services manager for Springfield’s city-owned utility, City Water, Light, and Power, says the LED bulb is the one with a bright future.
“Now the price is really dropping down,” he says, “in some places as low as $10 a lamp, which is still expensive by the incandescent standards. But those lamps are also rated for anywhere from 25,000 to 50,000 hours, where your standard incandescent, at best, is 2,000 hours.”
Hurley says the curly compact fluorescent bulb has been no more than a fallback.