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The Ideal CFL Technology Checklist

When buying  Compact Fluorescent Lamps, consider the following:

1. Must not  not use heat sensitive IC's.

2. Incorporates  amalgam  to ensure light source thermal stability.  Amalgam allows CFL’s to be used in totally enclosed fixtures with less  than 5% loss of lumen output.
Without amalgam CFLs will get too hot inside an  enclosed fixture.

The color temperature becomes much higher and the lamp will either drastically lose lumen output or will simply fail due to the ballast thermal runaway.


3. Employs  Electronic Preheat Circuitry. This technology
protects  lamp filaments from damage caused by rapid cycling ON/OFF.


4. Uses  motion sensors. 
Proprietary circuit design may or may not include this feature at every start. Combination  of measures would yield synergetic effects. Motion detectors may be relay or triac based.

5. Must possess Hot Restrike Protection.
Hot Re-strike Circuitry protects  lamps from damage caused by Hot Re-Strikes. When a CFL has been burning long enough to become fully hot (especially covered type CFL) and is turned OFF and then turned right back ON, this is called a hot restrike.

It requires significantly more lamp start voltage to get the lamp to light up. This mode places very undesirable stress on transistors and capacitors of the ballasts creating pre-mature
failures of covered type CFL’s.

6. Incorporate a circuit that limits the amount of  power used to re-strike the lamp thus protecting the internal electrical components and extending the life of the lamp. End-of-Life Protection Circuitry safely turns the lamps OFF at the end of
their life
span.

As  a CFL ages it requires more energy to both turn ON and maintain a
consistent light output. At End-of-Life, CFL’s without this feature can use so much power that enough heat is generated to melt the plastics and create a fire hazard. End-of-Life Protection Circuit automatically causes the  lamp
to fail just prior to reaching excessive heat levels.