Electrical Business


For the first time, majority of Americans aware of light bulb phase-out

November 18, 2011 | By Anthony Capkun

November 18, 2011 – With the U.S. federal phase-out set to commence January 1, 2012, the fourth annual Sylvania “Socket Survey” finds that—for the first time since the study’s inception in 2008—a majority of Americans (55%) report they are aware of 2007 congressional legislation that will phase-out most standard incandescent light bulbs. However, just under half of Americans remain unaware of the impactful changes coming into effect in the lighting industry.

While this year’s results indicate the amount of people optimistic about new technologies is up—with 56% of respondents reporting they are eager to use more energy-efficient lighting solutions—one-third of respondents admit they are worried about the phase-out. For a third year in a row, 13% of respondents say they plan to save up or “hoard” 100W incandescent bulbs—a consistent statistic that remained flat with 2009 and 2010 findings.

Additional findings of the 2011 Sylvania Socket Survey include:

• 87% of respondents still use incandescent bulbs in their homes, but 53% plan to switch to a new technology (such as CFLs, LEDs or halogen) after the 100W is eliminated in January 2012.
• Within the past year, the majority of consumers have evaluated the types of lighting options that they use, and 62% of respondents report they have changed or switched out a light bulb within the last year for energy efficiency reasons.
• 9 out of 10 consumers consider brightness, bulb longevity and price important when choosing a light bulb.
• While overall awareness of upcoming legislation is high, only 31% of Americans knew specifically that the 100W light bulb will no longer be made after January 1, 2012.
• More than half (56%) are excited about the phase-out because Americans will use more energy-efficient light bulbs, while 34% are worried because they prefer using traditional light bulbs.
• One-third of Americans say they will keep using traditional light bulbs, just switching to a lower wattage, like 75W. This number is up 7% from 2010 and 14% from 2009.


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