Philips manufacturers compact fluorescent lightbulbs some of which come with a very generous warranty and a promise of a long life. Mouse Print* reader Chet M. sent us the packaging on one such bulb with a seven year life expectancy that he thought was misleading.
That little dagger symbol leads to a tiny disclosure on the back of the package.
The problem with basing this bulb’s life on only three hours of use daily is that this is a special purpose bulb, with a built-in light sensor. It is meant to go on automatically when it gets dark, and then turn off at daybreak. In most parts in the world, the night is always longer than three hours. Typically, it might be nine hours or longer, meaning the actual life of the bulb might be just over two years — not the seven promised.
Mouse Print* brought this issue to the attention of Philips. A senior manager of the lighting division replied:
“The company was by no means trying to be misleading, just following accepted industry practices, and as soon as we were made aware the issue, we quickly updated the packaging. Philips stands by its products and services and we take all consumer inquiries/feedback seriously, using it as an opportunity to improve our offerings.”
True to their word, the company sent us a picture of their new package which removed the seven year claim on the front, and incorporated into their warranty that under normal usage, the bulb was guaranteed to last for two years.
In this instance, Philips is a shining example of a company fixing a legitimate consumer issue in record time. We salute them.