Question – Using CFLs Rather Than Incandescent Bulbs
Can I use a higher watt CFL than the fixture recommends?
I just installed a ceiling fan that calls for 2-40W max B base bulbs. Rather than use incandescent bulbs I thought I’d use CFL’s. I bought 9W bulbs because they are supposed to be a substitute for 40W incandescent bulbs, but there just isn’t enough light. I know that I can’t use higher wattage incandescent bulbs, but what about CFL’s?
I got this info off the GE site, but am still a little skeptical, I don’t want any problems later. “Because the wattage of a CFL bulb is much lower than that of an incandescent, you can use higher wattage CFL giving you the equivalent light of a higher wattage incandescent. For example: If your fixture says not to exceed 60 watts, you can use a 15 watt CFL to get the same amount of light as an incandescent bulb or use up to a 42 watt CFL and increase the amount of light.”
Do you agree with this information and if so, what would the max. wattage be of each of the two CFL’s I could use without causing any problems?
By the way, exactly what damage/harm does it cause to use higher wattage than the maximum recommended?
We have CFL’s in our ceiling fans and have reduced our electric bill and receive more light output as a result.
The Watt limitation is mainly to prevent the lamp socket form overheating and causing damage. In some cases I suppose it has to do with enclosure space as well. Fixtures are designed and limited to this heat factor produced by the lamps, which is based upon incandescent lamps – I’m sure we will see new labeling to accommodate CFL’s.
CFL’s should not be used in totally enclosed fixtures.
Read all the Specifications that comes withÂ the CFL.
Do not use Dimmer Switches on CFL’s unless they state that they are designed for your type of dimmer.
You Can Avoid Costly Mistakes!
Here's How to Do It:
Wire It Right with the help of my Illustrated Wiring Book
Great for any Home Wiring Project.
Perfect for Homeowners, Students,
Handyman, Handywomen, and Electricians
Wiring GFCI Outlets
Wiring Home Electric Circuits
120 Volt and 240 Volt Outlet Circuits
Wiring Light Switches
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Electric Range
Wiring 3-Wire and 4-Wire Dryer Cord and Dryer Outlet
How to Troubleshoot and Repair Electrical Wiring
Wiring Methods for Upgrading Electrical Wiring
NEC Codes for Home Electrical Wiring
....and much more.
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
Electrical Tips to Help You Wire it Right
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wires!
The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester that I use to easily Detect Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
The Quickest Way to Check for Faulty Electrical Wiring!
The Plug-In Outlet Tester
This is the first tool I grab to troubleshoot a problem with outlet circuit wiring. This popular tester is also used by most inspectors to test for power and check the polarity of circuit wiring.
It detects probable improper wiring conditions in standard 110-125 VAC outlets
Provides 6 probable wiring conditions that are quick and easy to read for ultimate efficiency
Lights indicate if wiring is correct and indicator light chart is included
Tests standard 3-wire outlets
Light indicates if wiring is incorrect
Very handy and easy to use.
Strip Off Wire Insulation without Nicking and Damaging the Electric Wire!
The Wire Stripper and Wire Cutter
My absolute favorite wire stripping tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and this is the tool I use to safely strip electrical wires.
This handy tool has multiple uses:
The wire gauges are shown on the side of the tool so you know which slot to use for stripping insulation.
The end of the tool can be used to grip and bend wire which is handy for attaching wire onto the screw terminals of switches and outlets..
The wire stripper will work on both solid and stranded wire. This tool is Very Handy and Easy to Use.