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Author Topic: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?  (Read 34491 times)

steven r

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Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« on: August 03, 2006, 04:49:02 PM »

There has been a lot of discussions here about CFLs. The pros and cons and the challenges using them with X10. Many of you have mentioned some brands work better than others. I'd like for those of you successfully using them to share with the rest of us in the "fluorescent dark ages" (e.g. I currently have none.) some brands that have and haven't worked for you. I'm also interested if anyone has tried any of the dimable CFLs.

Thanks.
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-Bill- (of wgjohns.com)

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2006, 10:57:45 PM »

The brand I have been using is "Conserv-Energy" model # BPCE13T (this is the "60 WATT replacement") bought in an 8-pack at Costco.
Claims output of 800 Lumens, using  13 WATTS, with a lifetime of 8000 hours.

I run them on AM466 3 Pin Appliance Modules (some of them hacked to disable "local control" and some of them not).

Been working for me for several years now.

The package says for questions call: 1-866-326-BULB (2852).

Otherwise I tried some Westinghouse 100 WATT replacements in exactly the same setup that kept burning out (not sure why).
« Last Edit: August 03, 2006, 11:00:05 PM by -Bill- (of BXVC) »
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JimC

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2006, 07:04:27 AM »

Bought mine at IKIA, not sure who the manufacturer is. They work fine with the socket rocket and seem to have a long working life. These are the only ones that I have tried. The package states that they draw 11 watts and that the light output is equivalent to a 60 watt incandescent light bulb. I use several of them outside, one in my post light and two in other outside light fixtures. I only put these in this spring so not sure how they will work in the cold winter nights. I have one in an inside lamp (not X10 controlled) that has been in use for over two years and it is still working fine.
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steven r

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2006, 10:58:31 AM »

...I use several of them outside, one in my post light and two in other outside light fixtures. I only put these in this spring so not sure how they will work in the cold winter nights....
While winters aren't really bad in the south, I'd be interested in that also.

I've also heard they shouldn't be mounted upside down. Is this true? I've thought of using one for the front porch light but the bulb is upside down.
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JimC

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2006, 11:58:40 AM »

Quote
I've also heard they shouldn't be mounted upside down

I don't recall seeing this on the packageing but will take a second look when I get home this evening. I currently have one mounted upside down in the basement.
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Brian H

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2006, 12:15:51 PM »

My Greenlite 13 watt ones. Just say if outside keep away from direct elements and if memory serves me also said if not upside down light output maybe lower than rated.
I have found that Durabright bulbs by TCP cause excessive noise on the X10 line signal range.
Can't comment too much on what works in X10 Appliance and Lamp Modules as I have a different brand that has less Local Current than X10s and may effect the CFLs performance.
I did find that one dimmable by GE 29 watt FLE29BQBX/DX/829. Did dim and start with an X10 Lamp Module as they start at full on and then dim. Some of the fancier brand lamp modules with ramp up and down failed to work.
One more thing 2 wire wall switches don't like them at all as they try to steal power through the load.
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steven r

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2006, 12:19:59 PM »

...One more thing 2 wire wall switches don't like them at all as they try to steal power through the load.
Don't lamp models also steal power through the load?
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Brian H

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2006, 12:21:50 PM »

They have the neutral in the plug so the hot and neutral can power the module and not have to rob through the load.
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steven r

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2006, 12:23:13 PM »

..if memory serves me also said if not upside down light output maybe lower than rated....
Sounds like they're recomending an upside down position for those.
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Tuicemen

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2006, 04:13:21 PM »

I've been using CFLs since they first cam out (ones with the replaceable bulbs) Not sure of the manufacturer but some were very noisy! I've since switched the whole house to the ones -Bill- (of BXVC)  described from Costco and ones made by Noma 9 & 13 watt ones ( Canadian tire carries them here. ) neither of these cause problems when used with a appliance module(never tried them in a lamp module) I have them mounted upright and sideways none upsidedown!  I've yet to find in the stores here ones that state they can be dimmed but see they're listed on the net! ;) :D ;D
Update:
Actually found one of the old CFLs in the furnace room  and one in the ceiling fan in the master bedroom still in use and both are upside down  ::) but neither is controlled by X10! ;) :D I see the bulbs have out lasted my memory! ;) :D
« Last Edit: August 04, 2006, 04:19:57 PM by Tuicemen »
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Brian H

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2006, 04:14:53 PM »

Looking at the box from a newer purchase didn't give that data so my original post was from fuzzy memory. I dug out an older box and it says basically.
Light output measured with base up. Light output measured base down varies by more than 5%. Doesn't say more or less just 5% ::)
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steven r

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2006, 11:39:03 PM »

...Light output measured with base up. Light output measured base down varies by more than 5%....
Light output could simply be a function of the way the bulb directs the light and not an actual change in physical output.

...Doesn't say more or less just 5%...
Probally less. If pointing it down resulted in more light outout then it would of read "Light output measured with base down. Light output measured base up varies by more than 5%."
« Last Edit: August 04, 2006, 11:43:14 PM by steven r »
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froggy

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #12 on: August 20, 2006, 02:12:14 PM »

I am using CFL's with an X10 dimmable lamp wall switch, but had to place an incandescent lamp in one of the three light fixtures being controlled by the switch to make it operate.  The control device used in the wall switch requires a small current to flow in the off position to allow the switch to work.  I tried using CFL/s in all three fixtures without success.   I learned about this situation when trying to get a photocell sensor to control some outside lights a few years ago.  A small night light bulb is big enough to provide the current path needed to allow the switch to work.  This fix only works with FULL on power.  The dimming feature will NOT work.
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Brian H

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Re: Which Brands of CFLs Work Best With X10 and Why?
« Reply #13 on: August 20, 2006, 06:33:21 PM »

Yes the two wire switches steal power through the load [light bulb] so all CFLs may not work. The three wire ones may work, that is the ones with a required Neutral wire not the third wiire being a control traveler.
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