Light Bulb Waste - Reduce and Recycle

A list of resources that can help reduce and recycle light bulb waste.

Why Use Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs)

Reduce Waste, Save Time, Save Energy, & Save Money

ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs last up to 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs.  An average U.S. home uses 15-30 light bulbs throughout the house.  Replacing your household light bulbs with CFLs reduces waste because you replace fewer bulbs, saves you time because you spend less time changing them, and saves you money because you buy fewer light bulbs.
Lighting accounts for about 20% of the average home's electric bill.  ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs use up to 75% less energy than incandescent light bulbs to produce the same amount of light.

Replacing a 75-watt incandescent bulb with a 20-watt CFL will reduce electricity consumption by roughly 550 kilowatt-hours over the life of that bulb.  This amounts to nearly 500 pounds of coal that didn't need to be burned to power the CFL.
 
If every home in the U.S. replaced just one incandescent light bulb with an ENERGY STAR qualified CFL, in one year it would save enough energy to light more than 3 million homes and prevent greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those of about 1,000,000 cars.
 
A coal-fired power plant will emit 10 milligrams of mercury to power an incandescent light bulb compared to only 2.4 milligrams of mercury to power a CFL for the same amount of time.  Even though CFLs contain up to 5 milligrams of mercury, using a CFL instead of an incandescent bulb reduces overall mercury emissions by at least 2.6 milligrams per bulb.  If a CFL is recycled, the mercury is recovered, reducing emissions even further.

Handle With Care

  • If a bulb breaks, carefully clean up the pieces to prevent exposure to mercury vapor:
  • Do no use a vacuum for cleanup.
  • Open a window and leave the room for 15 minutes.
  • Sweep pieces together with a brush or broom.
  • Clean up glass with a wet rag or towel.
  • Place broken pieces and rag or towel in a zip-top plastic bag.
  • Wash hands thoroughly.

Recycle CFL & Incandescent Light Bulbs

missouriAmerenUE
Web: https://www.ameren.com/missouri/my-home/energy-efficiency-look-up
Note: Ameren UE has partnered with 90+ businesses throughout Missouri to collect CFLs from residents.

missouriBatteries Plus
Web: www.batteriesplus.com/t-light-bulb-recycling.aspx
  • Materials Accepted: CFLs, fluorescent tubes, circular fluorescent, U bend fluorescent, spot/flood lamps, UV and germicidal lamps, incandescents, halogen lamps, cold cathode, metal halide, high pressure sodium, mercury vapor, and ballasts.
  • Fees apply for some items. Contact the store nearest you for details.
archEdele & Mertz Ace Hardware
Phone: 314.421.2131
Mail: 1822 South Broadway, St. Louis, Missouri 63104
  • Materials Accepted: CFLs.
  • They are a participant in AmerenUE's CFL recycling program. Residents can drop off their used CFLs for recycling free of charge. Broken bulbs will be accepted if they are contained in a zip-top plastic bag.
archHome Depot
Phone: 314.865.0700
Mail: 3202 South Kingshighway Boulevard, St. Louis, Missouri 63139
  • Materials Accepted: CFLs.
  • Individuals can bring in any expired, unbroken CFLs, and give them to a store associate behind the returns desk free of charge. This is a national program.
missouriLens Masters
Web: http://www.thelensmasters.com/4973.html

Fax: 314.427.2226   Phone: 314.427.1660
Mail: 11309 Midland Boulevard, St. Louis, Missouri 63114
  • Materials Accepted: CFLs, incandescent bulbs, ballasts, U-tubes, signage lamps.
  • Residents can drop off various shapes and sizes of light bulbs for a nominal fee.
archMetro Lighting
Web: http://www.metrolightingcenters.com/?display=recycling
Phone: 314.645.9100
Mail: 6801 Arsenal, St. Louis, Missouri 63139
  • Materials Accepted: CFLs.
  • They are a participant in AmerenUE's CFL recycling program. Residents can drop off their used CFLs for recycling free of charge. Broken bulbs will be accepted if they are contained in a zip-top plastic bag.

Think Green From Home (a service of Waste Management, Inc.)

  • Materials Accepted: CFLs.
  • Their $16.95 kit holds up to thirteen bulbs (they also offer a kit for tubes). They deliver the kit to you. You line the box with their Mercury VaporLok bag, fill the box with your used bulbs, and then ship the full box to them using their prepaid shipping label.

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