I just purchased a (new to me) CFL and it's producing a bad smell (NOT a smoke smell, it actually smells a lot like mold).
It's an EcoBulb daylight by Feit electric, 6500k 40 watts.
CFL bulbs have a built-in electronic ballast (in the base). I've heard that the ballast can put out a strange (musty) odor when it's going bad. You may have gotten a bad bulb. If the odor persist, I'd take it back and get a different bulb.
I just bought 2 of those exact same bulbs like a few weeks ago! I ordered them from Home Depot, and I was all excited til i realized that every CFL I have tried to grow with LITERALLY seeps out the infamous "Electric Smog" I have been reading about online. At first I thought it was just people being fear mongers, but then I started growing with CFL's, and then i felt it. Dizziness, headaches, blurry vision, stomach feels like crap, pressure in my head, and I knew EXACTLY why I was feeling this way, but didnt want to believe it. Its due to the heat from the CFLs rising and heating up the ballast that it vents out TERRIBLE chemicals into the air, at least this is what ive read, and it seems CLEAR as day to me, considering I have lived what ive read. I am in NO WAY, shape or form trying to insult anyone or try to project like I know scientific fact, but alls I DO KNOW is I cant use them in my room cause its air tight, and all that so called "SMOG" is floating in my room and making me feel absolutely like crap. So I am returning them, and I want to try T5HO Tubes, but in fear now that the same thing will happen. That they too will smell terrible and I wont be able to use them either, but its worth a shot I guess. I also tried to use GE 26 watt 6500/2700k lights from WM, but same thing happend. I thought they were bad until I realized the Fiet ones were doing the same thing, just not AS bad. I will say the Fiet ones were cleaner by far than the GE 26 watt ones, but still I got the same aftermath with my health so in the end it doesnt matter, and is rather disappointing. E-w-301 if you have found a good solution man let me know, cause I am a beginner and I am still searching for some way to grow indoors without a toxic smell. Do you know if Fluorescent tubes are better? Do they smell too? Anyways, good luck with everything.
Common sense would dictate that you would immediately cease using the CFLs if they started doing that. Never let it get to the point of causing the 'haze' that's visible, holy cats batman!
I'm running a 4x 2' T5 HO fixture (from Hydro-farm) and it's not causing anything like your experiencing. Now I will say that my 6500K's caused me to feel a little weird because of the intensity, but it was just that, not chemical venting.