With the federal phase out of inefficient lamps set to commence on Jan. 1, 2012, the fourth annual Sylvania Socket Survey found that, for the first time since the study’s inception in 2008, a majority of Americans (55 percent) reported that they are aware of 2007 congressional legislation that will phase-out most standard incandescent lamps. This survey shows efforts to raise consumer knowledge of the phase-out are working, with awareness growing by 19 percent in the last year and 29 percent since 2009. However, just under half of Americans remain unaware of the changes coming in the lighting industry.
Commissioned annually by Osram Sylvania, the Socket Survey measures the evolving consumer lighting landscape.

While this year’s results indicate the amount of people optimistic about new technologies is up—with 56 percent of respondents reporting that they are eager to use more energy-efficient lighting solutions—one third of respondents admitted they are worried about the phase-out. For a third year in a row, 13 percent of respondents said they plan to save up or “hoard” 100-watt (W) incandescent bulbs, a consistent statistic that remained flat with the 2009 and 2010 findings.

The survey also found that a vast majority (87 percent) of respondents still use incandescent lamps in their homes, but 53 percent plan to switch to a new technology. Also related to consumer habits, the survey found that, within the past year, the majority of consumers have evaluated the types of lighting options they use, and 62 percent of respondents reported that they have changed or switched out a light bulb within the last year for energy-efficiency reasons. Finally, 9 out of 10 consumers consider brightness, bulb longevity and price important when choosing a lamp.

On the prepardeness front, the survey found that, while overall awareness of upcoming legislation is high, only 31 percent of Americans knew specifically that the 100W incandescent lamp will no longer be made after Jan. 1, 2012. Unfortunately, 34 percent are worried about the phase-out because they prefer using traditional light bulbs. One third of Americans said they will keep using traditional lamps and simply switch to a lower wattage.

ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR will include more phase-out information next month.