Incandescent Light Bulb Ban: Understanding Your Lighting Options

Oct 2, 2023

Heard about the new federal incandescent bulb ban? Read about how California has banned CFL light bulbs? Wondering what you’ll do when those lingering incandescent light bulbs in your fixtures burn out and you need to replace them?

The light-obsessed pros at TCP have the info you need. We’ve been leading the lighting industry toward innovation for over 30 years, so we’re no stranger to changes in technology.

We break down what you need to know about the incandescent light bulb ban and how it will impact residential and commercial lighting options in the coming year. Then we offer sound insight into LED alternative lighting choices that will save you money and time while illuminating a brighter future for all of us.

Why Were Incandescent Light Bulbs Banned?

Incandescent light bulbs are incredibly inefficient. In fact, they produce more heat than light when they warm that iconic tungsten filament. And the familiar warm glow they emit is not the brightest, weighing in at about 15 lumens (a measure of brightness) per watt. Plus, they don’t last very long, generally burning out after about 1,200 hours (less than 2 months) of illumination.

The incandescent light bulb ban that became effective August 1, 2023 targets all these shortcomings with an emphasis on energy efficiency. It stipulates that all “general service lamps” (aka, household light bulbs) must emit a minimum of 45 lumens per watt. Built into the law were step-down periods that allowed manufacturers and distributors to adjust production and retailers to sell their last incandescent stock in stores through July. Another bill is set to go into effect in 2024 that raises the minimum to 120 lumens per watt, effectively catching up with the California CFL ban according to the Department of Energy.

The goal of this regulation is twofold: conserve natural resources and save consumers money on utility bills. Department of Energy designers of the legislation predict that over the next 30 years this law will:

  • Reduce carbon emissions by 222 metric tons — or about as much as 28 million homes create in a year
  • Save businesses and homeowners $3 billion in utility costs

Note that this law does not make buying and using incandescent light bulbs illegal — it prohibits manufacture of bulbs that don’t meet the minimum stated standards, which will end up simply making them unavailable to consumers looking for replacement bulbs.

Benefits of LED Alternative Lighting Options

Looking for the silver lining in all this legislative talk? Here it is: The best incandescent alternatives are Light Emitting Diode bulbs, aka LED lighting. And we are always delighted to shine a big ol’ spotlight on the many benefits of switching to LED lights!

As you make the transition to more sustainable lighting options, like LEDs, you can expect to enjoy:

Higher Efficiency

What exactly does it mean when we say LED lighting is more energy efficient than incandescent light? It means that LED bulbs put out more light energy than they consume to produce that light. And when it comes to your business or household budget, that means you’ll have to pay for less energy to keep getting all the brightness you need. Need that in more concrete terms? Check out our LED Savings Calculator to see clearly the ROI a switch to LED lighting can generate for you.

A Cleaner Environment

How can replacing light bulbs translate to a cleaner environment? TCP has been committed to designing and producing the most environmentally friendly lights possible since our very inception. Among other things, that means submitting to rigorous testing at third-party EPA-recognized labs to make sure our products meet or exceed safety, performance and packaging standards, as well as demonstrating an absence of toxins like mercury. We also work hard to offer outdoor alternatives to fluorescent light bulbs that can help businesses achieve Dark Sky Compliance for the improved health of humans, animals and our entire ecosystem.

Less Frequent Replacements

If you’ve ever been inconvenienced by an incandescent light that burned out after only a month or so, this incandescent light bulb ban should be welcome news. LEDs are called sustainable lighting for several reasons — one of them being a lifespan of up to 25,000 hours depending on the bulb. How does that translate to your everyday life? Think of it this way: Incandescents typically need to be replaced in less than 2 months, but most LED lighting options are good for more than a year. Specifically, you can expect more than 400 days of worry-free illumination before you’ll have to replace most LED bulbs. That’s particularly valuable for hard-to-reach lights, like those in stairwells or high ceilings.

More Control Over Ambience

Most of the people we’ve encountered who bemoan the incandescent bulb ban cite the “warm glow” they love from those old-fashioned bulbs. And we are the first to admit that there’s been a learning curve in that aspect of sustainable lighting. But the latest technological breakthroughs have helped us create a broad spectrum of LED lighting options that put you in direct control of the mood in any space. From understanding the importance of high-CRI light bulbs for keeping colors true to developing color-selectable LED lighting that lets you change a room’s lighting temperature with the flip of a switch, we’re proud to deliver alternative lighting that outdoes incandescents at every turn.

Find Incandescent Alternatives at TCP

Rather than allowing the incandescent light bulb ban to darken your outlook, embrace it as an opportunity to level up your everyday illumination. We’ve rounded up our strongest residential and commercial alternative lighting recommendations to help you make the switch without missing a beat.

No. 1 Residential Lighting Option: Anew Lighting

We designed our Anew Lighting line to be the go-to incandescent alternative for anyone who’s had a less-than-great experience with other LED lights. These beauties make the switch to LED lighting super easy and stress free with:

  • The same recognizable A19 shape as incandescents
  • The same E26 base that fits all your existing fixtures
  • The warm, full-spectrum glow of incandescents without irksome blue light spikes

By redefining the classic elements of those familiar light bulbs with our contemporary understanding of the links between better lighting and health benefits, Anew lighting makes it easy to support your family’s well being while saving money and helping protect the planet.

LED Lighting That Mimics Sunlight: SOListic

Let the sun shine in your office, classroom, healthcare facility or other business with TCP’s SOListic lighting options. Our advanced LED chip technology allows these bulbs to deliver clear, bright illumination that closely mimics daylight without the spikes in blue light that other LEDs struggled with. Their high Color Rendering Index (CRI) means colors stay true, and the wide variety of bulb types — from tubes to flat panel luminaires to wide-beam spotlights and more — makes them a perfect match for upgrading to the latest LED commercial lighting trends while staying well within your budget.

More Commercial Alternatives to Fluorescent Light Bulbs

TCP commercial LED lighting options are a sound investment for your company’s brand image, team morale and bottom line. From energy-efficient flat panels for the office to high-CRI high-bay lighting for manufacturing facilities to specialized alternatives to fluorescent light bulbs for classrooms, healthcare facilities, retail shops and more, we obsess over every detail to make sure our innovative technologies help your team work smarter and safer than ever.

Whatever your company’s industry, size or scope, you’ll be surprised at how TCP lighting levels up your business with brilliantly sustainable and cost-effective lighting solutions.

TCP: Your Source for Sustainable Energy and Lighting Solutions

Ready to discover the alternative lighting options that bring safe, energy-efficient illumination to your home or business? TCP is your go-to source for navigating the incandescent light bulb ban with seasoned, innovative ease. Contact us today to start bringing your best life to light with top-quality TCP LED lighting options.

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