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Say again? Think about light bulbs the way we think about appliances? You mean like, "Hey, Jim, can I borrow your truck to move an air conditioner and a light bulb on Saturday?"
Some appliances, like refrigerators, have light bulbs, but thinking of light bulbs as appliances? You mean like, "What about the extended warranty on that LED bulb for my desk lamp? Does the $99.95 cover only my lifetime or the lifetime of the bulb?"
People were first prodded to think about light bulbs as appliances in 2007 when Congress passed the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA). (All legislation enacted since 9/11 must have the words independence, security, or freedom in its title.) EISA mandated the gradual phase-out of the manufacturing, importation, and sale of "inefficient lighting." That's code for "incandescent light bulbs," the kind that have been around since Edison's time. Production of 75- and 100-watt incandescent bulbs was halted last year, and on January 1, 2014, manufacturers will turn out the lights on 40- and 60-watt bulbs as well.
Consumers will then be left in the dark when faced with the task replacing a light bulb. How many geeks does it take to change a light bulb? Five? One to hold the bulb and four to figure out the EnergyStar rating. To keep you from falling asleep at the light switch, Postcards from the Pug Bus has prepared a Lights Out Light Bulb Quiz for Dummies.
2. General Electric's "omnidirectional" light bulb got its name because . . . a) it provides as much light in two directions as a 40-watt incandescent bulb provides in four . . . b) it is the only light bulb with a true north . . . c) it is ambidextrous . . . d) its package includes directions in eight languages.
3. The projected twenty-year life span of an LED (light emitting diode) bulb is calculated in . . . a) dog years . . . b) metric hours . . . c) light years . . . d) nanoseconds
4. L70 is the point at which . . . a) an LED bulb is no longer safe to operate indoors . . . b) you are no longer paying interest on the loan you took out to purchase the bulb . . . c) an LED bulb is only 70 percent as bright as it was when you bought it . . . d) you are only 70 percent as bright as you were when you bought the bulb.
5. A CFL bulb . . . a) is more likely to explode the older it gets . . . b) contains enough mercury to take a child's temperature in an emergency . . . c) is the official light source of the Canadian Football League . . . d) is a favorite of indoor pot farmers.
6. A light bulb's "estimated average energy costs per day" . . . a) are lower during leap years . . . b) are unreliable if division by zero was employed in their calculation . . . c) must have a margin of error less than 30 percent . . . d) cannot be determined if the value of pi is a rational number.
7. The higher a light bulb's CRI number . . . a) the younger the bulb will make you look . . . b) the more the bulb will cost to operate . . . c) the more likely that the bulb will increase your medical costs under Obamacare. . . d) the better it finished in MTV awards voting.
8. Lumen is . . . a) a Greek word that means "dim bulb" . . . b) the name of Dexter's girlfriend in season 5 . . . c) the Roman goddess of light . . . d) Thomas Edison's corgi.
10. Earlier this year 554,000 LED bulbs were recalled by the Lighting Science Group (LSG) after some consumers had complained that . . . a) the bulbs had the wrong bar code . . . b) the bulbs were emitting fire and smoke as well as light . . . c) the sell-by date on the bulbs was 3021 . . .d) the LSG logo resembled that of a satanic cult.
11. If an 8-watt LED bulb is equivalent to a 40- or 50-watt incandescent bulb, how many 75-watt incandescent bulbs are there in a dozen . . . a) 9.375 . . . b) 12 . . . c) E=MC2 . . . d) . . . $2.99.