LED Lighting: A Bright Idea
LED lighting is quickly becoming the lighting type of choice for many homeowners. And why wouldn’t it be? It can lower your energy costs, help the environment, and illuminate your home with a clear, bright light. Here are a few things to keep in mind when making the switch to LED lighting.
LEDs come in a range of light temperatures.
A few years ago, switching to LED lighting meant quite literally “going green.” That is, the light cast from most LED bulbs appeared greenish. While that isn’t the case today, LEDs do have a range of light color temperatures. This means that each lightbulb has a Correlated Color Temperature (CCT), which corresponds to a temperature on the Kelvin (K) scale. The lower the number of Kelvins, the warmer and more yellow the light will appear. The higher the number of Kelvins, the bluer the light will appear.
Understanding this range of light temperatures can help you customize your lighting even more. Deciding which light color to use in which fixtures is a matter of personal preference. Lower Kelvins, or bulbs that are labeled “natural white” or “cool white” would be great for general ambient light. Higher Kelvins, or “daylight” bulbs would be perfect for more focused light, such as for a bedside reading lamp.
LEDs use a lot less energy.
LEDs are able to use so much less energy than incandescent bulbs because LED lighting converts 95% of energy consumed into light. Incandescent bulbs, on the other hand, convert only 10% of energy into light. The remaining 90% of energy used by incandescent bulbs is wasted as heat. Not only does this mean that LED bulbs are going to put off much less heat, but they’re able to provide just as much light with a fraction of the amount of energy as an incandescent bulb.
LEDs will save a lot of money in the long run.
When LEDs first came on the market, it seemed that only the true tree hugger wanted to use them. They were expensive and there weren’t a lot of options. Today, however, the prices are dropping quickly, and they won’t set you back too much more than incandescent bulbs.
The way you should really think about LEDs are more of a long-term investment. So, while the upfront cost will be a bit higher (though not much more) than other bulbs, they will last years longer and use a lot less energy during this time.
If you are planning to live in your home for at least two more years, you’ll get your money back from the LEDs you install today. For example, if you spend $6 on an LED bulb for your kitchen and use that bulb every day for the next two years, you’ll get your money back through a savings on your energy bill. It’s predicted that by swapping out an incandescent bulb for an LED, you’ll reduce the amount of energy consumption by 70-90%. These savings can really add up, especially when you consider the lifespan of an LED, which is impressive on its own. Most incandescent bulbs only last 1-2 years, but some LEDs can last two DECADES, or even longer.
LEDs can be dimmable.
We say that LEDs “can be” dimmable because there is a bit of a catch here. Most LEDs are dimmable, but not all LEDs are going to be compatible with your current dimmer switch. If you are planning to install a new dimmer, be sure it says that it supports LED lighting. Dimmers designed for incandescent bulbs will often cause LEDs to flicker, hum, or buzz.
Still have questions?
White’s Electrical can help. Whether you want to install an LED-compatible dimmer switch, or retrofit your office building for LED lighting, White’s can get it done. Our team of licensed electricians is continually trained, with access to cutting-edge technology and tools. They can complete any size electricaljob quickly, efficiently, and most of all safely.