The 75-Watt Bulb Has a Dim Future

The phaseout of traditional 100-watt incandescent light bulbs last January—a move to meet new federal efficiency standards—struck panic in the hearts of some consumers. Home Depot (HD) reported an up-to 20 percent spike in sales of 100-watt bulbs for 2011 as people rushed to stockpile for the future. At least one Ohio woman made sure to squirrel away enough bulbs to last 50 years. A month from now, on Jan. 1, 2013, traditional incandescent 75-watt bulbs also will go the way of the Dodo, as the second stage of the phaseout goes into effect. This time around, however, shoppers seem more relaxed. “Last year we saw some consumers buying up product, but that’s really slowed down,” says Bill Hamilton, president of light bulb merchandising at Home Depot. “Customers are beginning to embrace the new technology.”

Read more: