A typical CFL lightbulb will save a consumer $30-50 over its 6 year lifespan.
In the past we all bought bulbs based on the amount of power it used. We all got the call — “bring me home a pack of 100W bulbs from the hardware store.” While consumers were basing their bulb purchase on the amount of power it used, in reality they were trying to buy a certain amount of light and chose between the 40, 60, 75, or 100W incandescent bulb. Given the range of efficiencies the new bulbs provide, buying a bulb solely on the amount of power it uses no longer makes sense and we’ll have to shift to buying lumens. For example, a typical 60W light bulb produces around 800 lumens. The CFL that produces 800 lumens only uses 15W. To help consumers during this transition, bulb packages will likely contain a claim like “as bright as a 60W bulb” or “15W = 60W” to indicate the bulb is a suitable replacement for your old 60W incandescent bulb.