Why use LED lights?

LED lights are everywhere at the moment.

But why are they so popular all of a sudden, and why are they more expensive than regular bulbs?

Green America is a NPO that works towards creating a greener world, and they have created this clever break-down on the pro’s and cons of LED lighting:

LEDs were first introduced to the market in 1962. They work by the movement of electrons through a semiconductor material. Initially, LEDs only emitted red light, so their uses were limited to indicator lights and lab equipment. Now, however, they are available in the visible, ultra-violet, and infrared spectrums, which means they now have a much wider variety of uses, including inside your home.

PROS: Longevity—With a lifespan of approximately 25,000–35,000 hours, an LED bulb lasts 2 to 4 times longer than a CFL, and 25 to 35 times longer than a standard incandescent bulb.

Efficiency—While incandescent bulbs and CFLs generate most of their energy in heat, LEDs are cool to the touch—which translates into less wasted energy. It also means your air conditioner won’t have to run as high in hot weather. LEDs are more efficient than even CFLs: A 16.5-watt LED bulb is equivalent to a 20-watt CFL and a 75-watt incandescent. According to the US Department of Energy, adoption of LED lighting over standard incandescents over the next 20 years will prevent 40 new power plants from being constructed, generate more than $265 billion in energy savings, and reduce lighting electricity demand by 33 percent in 2027.

Other benefits—LEDs have other advantages over incandescent lights, including a smaller size and greater durability and reliability. Unlike CFLs, LEDs can also withstand extreme temperatures, and they do not contain toxic mercury.

CONS: Limited usage—LEDs only produce light in one direction, which make them great for 
recessed lighting, but not so good in lamps and light fixtures intended to light up an entire room or area. (For example, in many lamps, an LED bulb will end up aimed at the ceiling, rather than offering the 360-degree glow of a CFL or incandescent.) Like the first-generation CFL bulbs, most LED bulbs don’t illuminate instantly when they’re turned on. And it may be difficult at this time to find LED bulbs as bright as the brightest CFLs.

Color quality—Some users may find LED light a bit stark. “LEDs are most efficient when they emit a blue-white color, but many homeowners prefer a warmer (yellower) color of light,” notes Naomi Miller. When selecting an LED bulb, look for a ‘Lighting Facts’ label on the box, she says. It includes a spectrum bar that will indicate whether you’ll get a yellowish or bluish light.

Expense—According to Miller, “There are good LED products starting to be available, but they may be very expensive. It may be a year or two before the product quality improves and the cost comes down.”

BEST USES: LEDs are great for recessed and outdoor lighting, or lamps that produce a focused beam of light. They also make great indoor and outdoor holiday lights. They are not yet ideal for light fixtures and lamps intended to illuminate large areas of your home.

On June 29th, 2017, posted in: News, Uncategorized by , ,

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