Bulb Bewildered? Learn Which Light Bulb is Right for Your Space
Incandescent. LED. Compact Fluorescent. Halogen. Bright Lights. Dim Lights. Red Lights. Green Lights. Today’s consumers are so overloaded with new lighting information, trends, regulations, products, and more, they are constantly racking their brains, trying to make sense of it all, when they really just want simple answers to simple questions like…
What it is the best replacement for incandescent light bulbs?
The only light bulb in today’s market that no longer meets basic efficiency requirements is the 100-watt traditional incandescent. A 100-watt bulb is now required to use no more than 72 watts of electricity. At the start of next year, January 2013, bulbs as bright as current 75-watt incandescents will not be able to use more than 53 watts of electricity. And beginning in January 2014, these new energy efficient lighting standards will apply to 60- and 40-watt incandescent bulbs as well.
So what’s the next best thing? We recommend replacing your traditional incandescent bulbs with LEDs (light-emitting diodes), CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps) and/or halogen incandescent bulbs.
Although LEDs are considered a bit more expensive than other bulb options, the overall savings on maintenance and electric bills make them a worthy investment. LEDs also last longer than most incandescents and CFLs because they don’t have a filament that will burn out.
CFLs are a cheaper alternative to LEDs, yet still an efficient replacement for incandescent. CFLs use 75% less energy than standard incandescent lights and last about 10 times longer. Also producing about 75% less heat, CFLs are safer to operate and can cut home cooling costs.
Halogen lamps are a refinement of incandescent technology, offering up to 20% greater energy efficiency, longer service life and improved light quality. While the new advanced halogen incandescent bulbs are a type of incandescent, they do in fact meet the new efficiency standards.
Traditional incandescent bulbs are still available for certain specialty applications, including heat lamps, appliance lights, aquarium bulbs, and candelabra, decorative, tinted and colored lights.
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