In California, the 2005 Building Energy Efficiency Standards require the installation of high-efficacy lighting. And, to prevent you from swapping high cost fluorescents with low cost incandescents, screw-in CFLs do not count. So, 2 1/2 years into this energy saving experiment, our first triple tube 4-pin fluorescent failed. So much for that 10,000 hours average rated lifetime. I guess the plug-in CFLs fail just as well as the screw-in CFLs.
Anyways, our triple tube 4-pin fluorescent was installed in a bathroom. If the bulb stayed lit for 2-3 hours a day for 2 1/2 years, that comes to 1,825-2,737 hours. In reality, our usage is probably far less than that. How weak. 25% of its average rated lifetime. Now I have to hunt for an expensive replacement bulb.