Exactly - On a CFL or LED-L the label ignores component MTBF
Posted Mar 4, 2011 10:40 AM
They are all claiming the 12K-Hr to 16K-Hrt life of the fluorescent lamp tube or the 50K-Hr life of the LEDs in the unit...
But the real Mean Time Between Failure of these new lamps is a whole lot lower, because of the ballast board for a Compact Fluorescent Lamp and the power supply/lamp driver on a LED Lamp.
All of which are being built with the cheapest resistors and capacitors they can specify.
Even on permanently installed electronic fluorescent ballasts I see a lot of early failures (1-2 years) from capacitors blowing their tops or power transistors committing electronic seppuku with a big hole out the side, they aren't meant to run 24/7/365 without a rest.
An old-school magnetic ballast would take the same constant duty for 20 plus years without a hiccup.
And they are far more sensitive to environmental conditions. I just pulled a 13W CFL from my attic that was installed in 2007, and didn't have all that many hours on it. And we have an attic fan to moderate the Southern California environment, and it was sitting there OFF the vast majority of the time.
Just takes one transistor diode or capacitor to fail on the ballast/driver board, and the whole thing is trash.