Affordable Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs

Retailers make it easy for you to switch

compact fluorescent light bulbs

With the simple twist of a Compact Fluorescent Light Bulb, CFL, you can save serious energy and money on electricity costs. Energy Trust teams with select retailers and manufacturers through the Bonneville Power Administration’s Simple Steps program to bring you special pricing on ENERGY STAR® qualified CFLs so it’s easy and affordable to boost your lighting efficiency.

Today’s CFLs provide high-quality light, smart technology and good design. Best of all, they use about 75 percent less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs and can last at least six times longer. Many shapes, sizes and color temperatures are available for all household applications. CFLs are ideal for light fixtures that remain on for extended periods of time or are situated in hard-to-reach locations.

simple steps

You can find reduced prices on CFLs, including specialty globes, high-heat reflectors, three-way twists and candelabras, at the retail stores below.* Just look for the Simple Steps logo to find qualifying bulbs:

  • Ace Hardware
  • Batteries Plus Bulbs
  • Big Lots
  • Bi-Mart
  • Costco
  • Dollar Tree
  • Fred Meyer
  • Goodwill
  • Grover Electric and Plumbing Supply
  • Haggen
  • The Home Depot
  • Orchard Supply Hardware
  • Pacific Lamp Wholesale
  • Perry's Supply
  • Platt Electric Supply
  • Safeway
  • Walgreens
  • Walmart
  • Wilco

*Supplies are limited and stores may sell out. To ensure the availability, please call the participating store first.

Light output
ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs provide the same amount of light (lumens) as traditional bulbs, but use far less energy (watts). To find the right CFL for your needs, look for the lumens listed on the packaging and choose the lumen level that relates to the incandescent wattage you’re replacing (see table below).

CFL typical light output (minimum lumens)    

450   

800 

1,100 

1,600  

2,600 

Incandescent bulb (watts)

40

60

75

100

150

Color temperature
You’ll also want to be sure to look at the color temperature when choosing your bulbs. Color temperature is what determines the difference between a cool white bulb and a warmer bulb, which is often more desirable depending on the use—the lower the color temperature, the warmer the bulb.

Installing CFLs
To take full advantage of their superior energy savings and long lamp life, it’s best to install CFLs in frequently-used light fixtures that are on for at least 15 minutes at a time. It is not recommended to use CFLs in closets, recessed can lights or fixtures with dimmer switches or timers unless you buy specialty CFLs designed for those applications. Check the bulb packaging and it will note if the bulb is compatible with dimmable fixtures.

Safe handling
CFLs contain a very small amount of mercury. Learn more about safe CFL handling and where to recycle CFLs in your area.