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Tip #156

Install an insulation blanket on your water heater.

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Fort Collins Utilities is an equal opportunity residential and commercial utility service provider. We do not discriminate in the terms, conditions or provision of services based on race, color, religion, sex, disability, familial status or national origin.

Fort Collins Utilities es una empresa proveedora de servicios públicos residenciales y comerciales con igualdad de oportunidad. No discriminamos en los términos, las condiciones o la provisión de servicios en base a raza, color, religión, sexo, discapacidad, estatus familiar o nacionalidad de origen.

CFL Failure & Disposal

CFLs occasionally burn out, but more often will continue to operate, gradually producing less light as they age. At some point you'll want to replace bulbs for brighter light. ENERGY STAR® qualified CFLs must produce at least 80 percent of the bulb's rated light output at 40 percent of its rated life.

Only rarely do CFLs fail more dramatically, with a combination of flickering, sputtering, a puff of smoke or melted plastic. ENERGY STAR qualified bulbs must use plastics that do not support combustion, and most are protected by internal fuses. If your bulb fails as described above, turn off the power to the fixture as quickly as possible.

If your CFL bulb fails early, contact the manufacturer, who is ultimately responsible for warranty claims. Be sure to save the proof-of-purchase and register receipt to document your claim.


All fluorescent bulbs, including CFLs, contain small amounts of mercury, an environmental concern. Mercury is a toxic metal associated with contamination of water, fish and food supplies.

Several local retailers offer free CFL recycling for broken and unbroken bulbs. When recycling at any of these locations, please seal all CFL bulbs in a plastic bag.

Visit or download our recycling and disposal options (PDF 1.8MB) brochure for additional information.

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