It used to be that incandescent light bulbs ruled the market place. Every light in every home had incandescent bulbs. Beginning in the 1880’s with Thomas Edison’s carbon-filament bulbs, incandescents were synonymous with the words light bulb until the 1990’s , when Compact Florescent Light (CFL) bulbs began to be widely used. Since the invention of the CFL, light bulbs have only become more and more optimized and efficient. This brings us to today’s light bulb marketplace and the invention of the LED light bulb.
Light Emitting Diode (LED) light bulb technology has come a long way. Initially, the light wasn’t technically omni-directional, and there was this slight flickering that, while not too noticeable, was very bothersome to some. Recent innovations have not only fixed these problems, but addressed several other issues that older light bulb types had.
Why Get an LED Bulb
Most new LED bulbs are dimmable, meaning there are now good energy-saving replacements for bulbs in chandeliers or wall sconces that are controlled by dimmers. LED bulbs are also instant-on and off. No more waiting 2 to 3 minutes for them to “warm up” like CFL bulbs.
LED bulbs are the longest-lasting bulbs on the market. They are typically rated for 25,000 to 50,000 hours. The package will indicate life based on 3 hours usage per day–so a 25,000 hour bulb will last (@ 3 hours / day) approximately 23 years!! They are the perfect choice for fixtures that are hard-to-reach, such as high recessed fixtures or outdoor flood lights.
LED bulbs are among the most energy-efficient light sources available. And although their efficiency is only slightly better than CFL bulbs, their longer life and smaller size (about 5x) gives them a distinct performance edge.
Most LEDs do not have a glass envelope. They’re made of more solid material, making them more durable than other types of light bulbs. They’re safer because they’re shatterproof.
LED bulbs used to be notorious for having a poor color appearance. However, with the most recent innovations in LED light bulbs there is almost no discernible difference between LED lighting and CFL lighting. If you still prefer the yellow glow of incandescent bulbs, there are LEDs available that are designed to give that effect.
Because LEDs last so long and use much less energy, they leave a far smaller footprint environmentally. Unlike CFL lamps, they contain no mercury. However, they still typically contain some trace amounts of lead or even arsenic. And since over 95% of an LED bulb is recyclable, it makes sense to find out what your community has provided for recycling them. Check with your local government or trash hauler.
Check to see if your local or state government OR energy provider offer an LED upgrade or recycling program. As local and national government is pushing for cleaner, more eco friendly electricity and appliances they have begun offering awesome deals for local homeowners. From recycling programs to vouchers and tax breaks, find out what your local or state government offers as well as your energy supplier.
The combination of low energy requirements and very long life always adds up to big savings when replacing incandescent bulbs — and even CFL bulbs!
Which Bulb to Get?
As you can see there are many reasons to upgrade from the older incandescent bulbs into the future of lighting, LEDs. There are so many options out there with LED bulbs it’s hard to know where to begin. From custom colors, to lighting, to direction there are are so many options available including:
- Dimming bulbs
- Color changing bulbs
- Directional bulbs
- Variable sizes
- Floodlight and spotlight bulbs are readily available for recessed fixtures, track lighting and outdoor flood lights
- Decorative, candle-shaped bulbs are now available for use in chandeliers and wall sconces
- Globe bulbs are suitable for bathrooms and vanities
- A-line (good old-fashioned light bulb shape) bulbs are available for almost general room lighting.
Color temperature is a characterization of the light itself. Low color temperature (2,700 – 3,000°) is the warmer yellow color of candles and incandescent lighting. High color temperature (4,000 – 6,000°) is the colder, more blue light. Bulbs that give off soft light work best for indoor applications and smaller areas. Bulbs that give off bright light work best for outdoor lighting and indoor task lighting.
For those more familiar with a wattage measurement on the old incandescent bulbs, here is a great way to tell what a high or low lumen bulb will mean compared to an old wattage bulb.
When coming to the store, bring the bulb you’re replacing with you so that we can help you match the base, size, and other properties.
LED bulbs are the future, and they’re here now. For more information on LED bulbs or to buy one today visit our website at http://www.koopmanlumber.com/locations.html to find the store nearest you. Thanks for reading!