Friday, February 15, 2008

Why is there Mercury in my CFL?

I just had my first bulb CFL burn out, which I am rather upset about. It's only lasted a year - although my husband leaves the bathroom light on all the time...that doesn't help. And this is an anomaly for me - I have other CFLs that are 3 years old and still going strong.

At any rate, I'm saving the receipts and boxes of the new CFLs I buy so I can return them if they don't last as long as they're supposed to. Now I have to find out where to recycle my bulb in St. Paul, which has a small amount of mercury in it. By the way, why is there mercury in a CFL? I'm glad you asked - check out this video:

http://wcco.com/video/?id=38401@wcco.dayport.com
"The mercury is critical to the operation of a compact fluorescent bulb. It exists in powder form, inside the glass twists of a CFL bulb. When plugged in, the electricity excites the mercury producing ultraviolet energy. Without that process there would be no glow and no light."

2 comments:

Cat's Staff said...

Humidity in bathrooms can shorten their life. Make sure your running the ventilation fan when showering and leave it on for a little bit after. I have to do that anyway, or when I open the bathroom door the smoke detector right outside the door will go off. There are some CFL's designed for extreme temp/humidity conditions.

Maria Surma Manka said...

Really? I had no idea - thanks for the tip!!