Ikea's incandescent light bulbs go dark

Not such a bright idea anymore.

Not such a bright idea anymore.

Thomas Edison had a really bright idea when he invented the incandescent light bulb back in 1879.

But despite a culture war lit by Michele Bachmann over the dim fate of the glowing orbs, they are destined for the history books.

That's why, pretty soon, you won't be able to find them at Ikea. The retailer, including its massive showroom next to the Mall of America in Bloomington, is phasing them out.


The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 mandates that the energy-hog light bulbs be phased out starting in 2012, but Ikea says that, besides the law, it's simply keeping up with consumer demand.

Fifty-five percent of Americans say they have already changed the majority of light bulbs in their homes to energy-saving lights, even though most don't even realize the old bulbs are coming off the market. They're just doing it because they know it saves them money in the long run.

The Swedish retailer, with a U.S. base in Pennsylvania, is the first in its class to officially make the move away from incandescent bulbs. In honor of Edison, we thought we'd post the original patent request for his invention.