I’ve heard that it takes more energy to turn on a CFL than to keep it on. So, isn’t it true that it’s wasteful to turn off the lights every time you leave a room if you’ll only be gone for a few minutes?
That’s a great question. It’s true that, when you turn on a CFL (compact fluorescent light), it demands a small amount of extra power. But that surge lasts for 1/120th of a second and equals the amount of electricity to power the light for a few seconds at most. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, turning off a CFL for more than 5 seconds will save more energy than will be consumed in turning the light back on again. So, rest assured that you’ll save energy, rather than waste it, by turning off CFLs as you leave a room.
- Li Ling for Ask The Home Team