Given how much they cost the payback period is probably something crazy like 50 years.
stuzzo: Bunnings have recently been selling 5 watt Led Bayonet and Edisons for about $12.
Skolink: In my opinion downlights should only be used for beam lighting of a desk, not for room lighting, so I think no spill is a good thing.
Also they were halogen downlights that alsmost caused a fire, not CFL downlights. Birds had put straw and the old 'insulfluf' paper insulation over the light.
The ones that are constantly failing are the GU5.3 base (bi-pin) because the contacts are so useless, but the GU10 lamps fail fairly often too.
The LED lamps I saw have a fairly wide and even beam, and are sealed with a glass pane so provide *some* reistance to heat flow.
At $100 I don't think I will buy any myself though, I'll just persevere with the little Ecobulb CFL downlights I have.
Skolink:stuzzo: Bunnings have recently been selling 5 watt Led Bayonet and Edisons for about $12.
How many lumens?
richms: If your halogens are almost setting the house on fire, they are incorrectly installed.
The problem with the MR16 replacements I have found is that while the middle of the beam can compete with a 35w normal halogen, there is virtually no spill into the rest of the room. Fine to light up a display case or artwork, not for room lighting.
The CFL replacements have the opposite problem - no beam at all, and while the total light output is probably close to a halogen, they are all spill with no beam so the place looks poorly lit.
timmmay: LEDs might be suitable for that. I don't see any great gain using LEDs, unless you like the look of them. They probably won't be turned on that much will they?