How to select an LED bulb
These are the things to look for in an LED bulb:
- hours of life (on hours). typically anywhere from 50,000-100,000
- socket type. The household bulb type we all know and love is the A19 bulb with Edison E27 socket. recessed cans are R-series bulbs and can also be PAR series bulbs. see your lighting store to identify a bulb type.
- color temperature, measured in Kelvin:
- 6000-6500K cool white/daylight
- 5500K daylight
- 5000K pure white. optimal. you can actually see things! room is much brighter. just plain white.
- 4500K some mfr's definition of warm white
- 4000K-4500K neutral white
- 3000K soft white
- 2600K-3700K some mfr's definition of warm white (closer to the orange incandescent bulbs)
- 3W LED=15W incandescent (chandelier, candelabra),
- 6W LED=45W incandescent
- 8W LED=60W=630 Lumens(LM) incandescent
- 10-11W LED bulb=75W=800 Lumens incandescent bulb
- 20W LED=150W incandescent
- more compact? for corn bulbs and other types of bulbs, you can actually get higher light output and better light density per LED when manufacturers use brighter LEDs as opposed to more less-bright LEDs.
- Whether there is a warning that comes with the bulb not to use in an enclosed space such as a globe. LED bulbs generate heat, and because they are electronics, electronics don't like heat. by the way, my R30/BR30 LED with the heat sink fins works fine in my recessed can.
- Do you need a Dimmable bulb? The LED's might be wired in series: for my 11W R30 bulbs there are about 30 of them, and at a 2V drop each, that makes about 60V or 1/2 your total voltage (1/2 your dimmer slider) before you start seeing any fruits in the dimmer, so Dimmable LED's are not as perfect in dimmers as are incandescents, but they use less and won't heat up your dimmer as much!
- $$[$]price. sometimes you can get a better price, but going for a cheaper price doesn't always get you the best quality. I like going for quality. for instance, when I was looking at some bulbs, I noticed that an A19 bulb was rated at 80 LM (Lumens). a 60W light bulb is rated at 630 lumens. also, I noticed some really cheap A19/A-type (standard household) bulbs which required a controller, which means more money and complications (when you read the manual/spec)... if the company on the web doesn't list a price or won't sell to you online, DON'T SHOP THERE, they are probably in china or is only for resellers who deal overseas, those are typically at the top of the search engines.
- TEST IMMEDIATELY! I got 1 bad one (DOA or Dead On Arrival) out of 4, so immediately test them and send them back if they do not work. DOA policies are typically 14-30 days from purchase (see paperwork for DOA and warranty and return policy). Sears.com has some good lighting products, they carry smarthome.com.
2/17/2012 diogen only makes a warm white A19 bulb. they are sold just about everywhere. but diogen makes a wide color temp range for candelabra which others don't. Home depot also sells bulbs, but I wasn't too impressed with what they had on the shelves, not very bright, or they were warm white (blech).
- you can choose a different color temperature, which can be BRIGHTER than incandescents at the same equivalent wattage
- uses about 14% of the electrical power of an equivalent incandescent bulb
- retrofit for household, automotive, business, exotic lighting, signage, and many other uses.
- lasts a LONG time, 50,000-100,000 hours compared with 2000-2500 hours for incandescent
- Whether there is a warning that comes with the bulb not to use in an enclosed space such as a globe. LED bulbs generate heat, and be4cause they are electronics, electronics don't like heat. by the way, my R30 LED works fine in my recessed can.
- currently expensive, but prices are supposed to be coming down
- if it's bad, can't throw away because it's electronics, must recycle or return to place of purchase within DOA period if DOA (dead on arrival)
LED Panel Lighting
standard "A" bulb replacement lighting (may or may not work in globes)
A21 bulbs are 360° light like traditional incandescent bulbs, light goes in all directions.
A19 bulbs are half-moon 180° light shaped like traditional incandescent bulbs but are directional.
the top 4 work good for lamp shades, especially the stark/pure white.
also, the brighter the bulb (higher wattage), the lesser the chance of depression during winter from light deprivation (if you stay indoors all the time).
corn bulbs that might work in globes
we need a corn bulb twith the following qualifications:
- *CORN BULB
- *E27 BASE
- *DIMMABLE! (what would be really nice is if this would work at not just 1/2 the range of the dimmer, but 90% of the range of the dimmer!)
- *THIN, round 36 degree profile, as thin as possible, preferably slightly wider than the E27 socket
- *must not be higher than normal incandescent A19 bulb
- *must not be thicker than normal incandescent A19 bulb, preferably much thinner so I can get my fingers around the bulb
- possibly use outdoor, maybe sealed, could be plastic or glass, don't care, this is optional, I don't have to have it, but the bulb is going in a fixture outside, so exposed to humidity, maybe sun (it will be off during sun) when replacing them in outside lamps
- uses many large chips, OR many small ones, pack 9W and more inside this package.
- 2 kinds: 1 kind where chips must be densely packed - as high density as possible (is 3-4x normal possible?), and one where chips are not so densely packed.
- diffuser would be nice so we don't hurt our eyes, but optional (does a diffuser cause heat? does it cause less light to be produced?)
- must work in an enclosed space (this is something you should advertise as a feature! some bulbs say you can't)
- warranty of 20 years would be nice, but 5 years will do OK
- lifespan of 50,000-80,000 hours
- can handle motion light controller "flicker" (indecision)
E12 candelabra, E14 chandelier
track lighting, motion light bulbs
If they have these models, they probably have other models as well, so look around.
I have discovered that motion lights can be used with dimmable A bulbs as a retrofit, but mostly the fixtures out there are completely designed as a unit, 1 solid piece. won't cause discoloration of the objects they illuminate.