Monday, November 29, 2010

CLF , LED , Halogen lamps

What is the difference in light bulbs

Here is an example of the three most common light bulb choices out there for your 6 inch recessed lights. The recessed lights are fitter with wall washer trims and are designed to  flood the walls with light. Washing the walls with light is a technique that makes a room feel larger and brighter. 

1)  Left - EcoSmart 16-Watt (65W) Daylight R30 CFL Light Bulb. ($7-$10) 

2) Middle -EcoSmart PAR30 15-Watt (60W) LED Flood Light Bulb (E)* ($40-$60)

3) Right- Standard R30 Halogen 65watt bulb

The standard R30 will no longer be manufactures in 2012 because of it's large consumption of energy. For that reason we should focus on the other two options. The CFL is has been the main bulb replacing the halogen bulb for client who were energy conscience.  As you can see it doesn't cast the quality of light that we get out of the old halogen lights. The light beam doesn't cast as far and the edgers are not as crisp. The reason for is that fluorescent bulbs are not a directional light source. The bulb glows in all directions and most of the lumens are wasted inside the fixture. The lighting color is closer to the halogen spectrum. It does cast a warmer glow that does  better match the tone of the halogen but there is still a small amount of flicker produced by the florescent bulb. The CLE is dimmable but only to 20% and with even more flicker at lower levels. There is always the mercury to worry about in the CFL. It is only a pencil tips worth of it but still of it. That is less the the amount produced by power plant produce to supply the power for the halogen bulbs but this mercury is in your home and not some far off power plant.

The LED does produce a better stream of light. The bulb is naturally directional. It does not have the same spread of your halogen light. There is a more stark difference between what is in light and what is not light. The color is on the colder side. This can be good depending on the effect you are trying to obtain. The LED is almost completely dimmable. LEDs are still a new technology.  It should not be too long until we see prices come down and light qualities may even surpass the old Halogens
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