Are you “Bright” Enough?

Are you "Bright" Enough? LED Lightbulbs

What’s the one item in your house you don’t think about until it’s gone?  While some may argue items such as food, toilet paper, or others, there is one key aspect of everyone’s house that is needed daily and hasn’t improved much since the 1800s (until now).  That item is a light bulb.

For the majority of the last two centuries, most consumers have used incandescent light bulbs.  While these act as true “point sources” of light, they are terribly inefficient and most of the energy used escapes as heat.  This causes them to burn more energy, die sooner and rack up your power bill.  In fact, they are so inefficient that the government has decided that we can’t buy them anymore.

So what now? Are we reverting back to caveman days? Should everyone stock up on candles and flashlights?

Ok so it’s not that dramatic.  There are still two major bulb types.  The first, called compact fluorescent lamp, or CFL, has been around for a few decades.  While CFLs may have seemed like the future of lighting at one point, the inclusion of mercury and an unpleasant color has “dulled” their growth.

Thus enters the LED light bulb, or “light-emitting diode.”  While LEDs has been around for years in digital clocks, cell phones, and even Christmas lights, their growth in household lighting is just beginning.

There are many scientific reasons behind how LEDs work and why they are more efficient, but in its simplest sense, LED technology allows the same amount of light to emit at a much lower power.  A LED bulb with light equivalent to a 60-watt incandescent bulb can use as low as 6-8 watts, increasing light efficiency by up to 85%. This saves not only your wallet, but also the world (in a sense).  By using less energy, there is a large reduction in CO2 emissions.  Don’t care about saving the world or money? What about time?  A single LED bulb can last upwards of 25 years!

With the majority of light/energy companies focusing their research efforts in LED technology, LEDs will soon act as the main household light source.  What once was an expensive lighting alternative is now growing cheaper and cheaper.  Most LED bulbs will now pay back the price difference over CFL or incandescent in just one year.

What should I know about LEDs?

Before you run out to the nearest store to save energy, your money, and the world, let 4th Strand give some tips on what you should consider before buying.

  • Most LEDs list two wattage levels, their true wattage and the “equivalent wattage” (to incandescent).  Make sure to purchase the wattage right for your applications. In general, the higher the wattage equivalence, the brighter the light.
  • Need it for a dimmable light switch?  Buy a bulb that is clearly labeled as dimmable.
  • Numbers such as 2700K or 5000K are color temperatures in kelvin.  The numbers coordinate with light appearance types.  5000K is typical daylight use, 3000K is a bright white/neutral color, and 2700K is a soft white/warm color.
  • Make sure to purchase the bulb shape meant for your application (exterior, recessed, etc.).

Whether you want to purchase LED bulbs for your house or not is entirely up to you, but before long you may not have a choice.  Compared to incandescent, LED bulbs use approximately 10% as much electricity, costing 10% of your bill, and creating 10% of the CO2 emissions.  And while they were once thought of as an unrealistic household light source due to the “bluish” tint, they now are being used in retail stores and showrooms to make color “pop.”  Even new technology televisions are employing LED technology to make the best picture for you.

Make sure you are educated the next time you purchase a light bulb for your house.  If you choose LED, it may be the last time.


Do you own LED light bulbs?  Are you planning on switching?  Have any questions before you buy? Let us know!

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One Response to Are you “Bright” Enough?

  1. I think LED bulb light is the best power saving as well as Eco friendly LED bulbs. I have a great experience with LED bulbs and lamps.

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