Introduction: Torchiere Light Misbehaving?
Using too much power? Creating too much heat? Stopped working? In general being a bit of a fire hazard as well as making you feel guilty for pulling more than your fair share of electricity from the power grid?
Mod it with a compact fluorescent light (CFL)!
As nice as they are (and that's pretty nice), many torchiere lights use 300 watt halogen bulbs. They also generate lots of excess heat. With this mod, you can replace the 300 watt halogen bulb with a 25 watt CFL. This will improve the efficiency several times over. Plus, the CFL generates less heat, so air conditioners won't have to work as hard in the summertime.
As a bonus, the light will no longer be a fire hazard.
As an extra bonus, if just 1 million American households do this mod, there will be so many wattages saved, it will too many for me to count, wait, perhaps I can count it ... 1 million x 275 watts x 1 hour per day = 275 million watt hours every day. Or in more common parlance, 275,000 kilowatt hours. And that's assuming that there is only one light used for only one hour in only 1 million households. It's likely much more than that. Plus, there is a significantly smaller amount of heat generated -- less heat for the AC system to deal with. Now, is there someone out there smart enough to quantify the amount of electricity saved due to lower air conditioning loads?
Here's a related instructable that I found AFTER I made this one. Really. https://www.instructables.com/id/EVC73BPF2FRV6W6/
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Step 1: Parts and Tools
You will need a torchiere light. I like to use the older style that has an on/off switch instead of a dimmer switch. You can even use one that has stopped working since the most likely point of failure is the halogen bulb-to-socket connection. The dimmer-switch style may not be very friendly to compact fluorescent lights (CFL). If you do use a dimmer-style, always turn it up to full power, or better yet, use a "dimmer-compatible" CFL. (Note, according to https://www.instructables.com/id/EY6SM8KF4DEPVX1/ using a non-dimmable CFL in a dimmable fixture is hazardous.)
Indoor/outdoor pigtail lamp holder (about $2)
Two wire nuts
Two cable ties
Electricians tape (don't get the cheap stuff)
Compact fluorescent light (CFL)
Step 2: Hack the Light
CAUTION: UNPLUG THE LIGHT BEFORE DOING THIS MOD -- just in case you forgot.
Remove the halogen bulb and the metal heat shield. Cut the two wires close to the bulb holder. Tug on them gently to obtain a little more length. You now have what I call "bulb holder pigtails".
Step 3: Install the Lamp Holder
Strip off about 1/2" of insulation from the lamp holder pigtails and the bulb holder pigtails. Connect the lamp holder pigtails to the bulb holder pigtails using the wire nuts. Twist the wires together before screwing on the wire nuts.
CAUTION: Attaching the wire nuts correctly is very important. Life threatening voltages and fire danger will be present if not done correctly. If you don't know how to use wire nuts correctly, consult with a professional or expert to learn how to do it safely.
After connecting the wire nuts (and tugging them to insure they won't fall off later), tape them securely with electricians tape. Do a really good job to prevent later problems.
Use the cable ties to secure the lamp holder to the light structure. Then, replace the heat shield to conceal the wire nut connection -- this is very important! If the wire nuts fail, then the metal heat shield will prevent injury or fire danger.
Always remember to treat your CFL's with respect. Don't break them and don't dispose of them in household trash. If broken, you must use special cleaning procedures. For disposal, take them to a recycler.
Now, go and enjoy all the benefits of your CFL Torchiere lights -- nice, diffused, reflected light. Tell all your friends. Ahhh, life is good.