Difference Between Fluorescent and Incandescent Light Bulbs
By Laura Lee - February 8, 2022

When it comes to choosing a light bulb, there are so many options: LED, fluorescent, incandescent, halogen, etc. We know LED bulbs are cheaper and last longer – but what about incandescent and fluorescent bulbs? Which one is more cost-effective? How do they work? Well, you’re about to find out.

Table Summary

Incandescent BulbFluorescent Bulb
Lasts about 1,000 hoursLasts around 9,000 hours
Doesn’t emit mercury vaporContains mercury
High operating temperatureLow operating temperature
Stylish, modern, large lightbulb mounted on a tongue and groove interior wall

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Fluorescent (CFL) light bulbs emit light by sending an electrical discharge through an ionized gas. They are more energy-efficient than traditional incandescent bulbs but also cost more than them and take longer to achieve full brightness. These bulbs are known to reduce replacement costs and last up to 20 times longer than incandescent bulbs. They also emit less heat and distribute light evenly. Unlike incandescent bulbs, fluorescent light bulbs contain mercury, which harms the environment. When these bulbs are discarded, the mercury in them evaporates and pollutes the water and air.

Incandescent light bulbs generate light by heating the filament present inside them. They are very sensitive to voltage changes, which affects their longevity. Although incandescent bulbs are not as energy-efficient as fluorescent ones, they do not emit mercury vapor, which means they might impose fewer risks to the body than the other option.

Incandescent VS Fluorescent Light Bulbs

At the end of the day, fluorescent light bulbs are considered better than incandescent bulbs for several reasons: they last longer, have a lower environmental impact, and save more energy than their traditional counterpart. But before you go to the store, consider researching the difference between LED and fluorescent bulbs – might change your mind again.