The emergence of LED lighting has created quite the shift in lighting technology and manufacturing. When we ask our clients about lighting preferences and shifting their new and existing fixtures to LED, most people only seem to know a couple of basic facts about LED lighting, with particular concern of the price tag. Although price comparisons of incandescent light bulbs and LED bulbs will undoubtedly show quite a price discrepancy, it is crucial to understand the rest of the advantages to get the complete scope of the cost savings and benefits provided by LED lighting.
1. Length of Life: An average 60-watt incandescent bulb consumes approximately 525 kWh of electricity a year. A store bought, interior LED bulb will consume approximately 65 kWh and lasts approximately 750 hours. An average store bought LED bulb will last approximately 30,000 hours with some up to 50,000 hours. Yes, this does save you money in replacing bulbs, however that is just the beginning.
2. Reduction of Energy Usage: In simple terms, an average 60-watt bulb will operate at 20% efficiency with the remaining 80% of the energy being lost or converted to heat. An LED bulb will operate at 80% -90% efficiency with only 20% (or less) being lost or converted to heat. Now the savings have been significantly increased as your electricity bill is affected by at least an 80% reduction relative to lighting.
3. No UV Emissions: LED illumination produces little infrared light and close to no UV emissions. This makes LED lighting the perfect source for areas that contain materials sensitive to heat and areas that have items prone to fade like wood flooring, delicate fabrics, expensive artwork, etc.
4. Environmentally Friendly: LED lights do not contain the toxic chemicals and materials like mercury that are dangerous to the environment. They are also 100% recyclable. Therefore, one LED bulb will eliminate materials costs and production costs of approximately 25 incandescent bulbs. Savings for the environment and much smaller carbon footprint!
5. Frequent Switching / Immediate Lighting: LED lights have the ability to brighten up immediately and when switched on, while traditional lighting usually takes several seconds to reach full brightness. Additionally, conventional light bulbs will drastically reduce in life expectancy with frequent on/off switching, while LED’s do not.
6. Extreme Temperature Environments: LED lighting is ideal for use in extreme cold temperatures where fluorescent lamps fail. They are the best option for freezers and outdoor use in winter temperatures.
7. Durability: LED lights are made to be extremely durable and resistant to external impacts, shock and vibrations. They are the best option for extreme exposure and rough conditions as they are manufactured with sturdy components.
8. Design Flexibility: Given that LED lighting can be adhered to thin tapes and plastics, they can be molded and shaped in many ways to produce fantastic results in terms of colors and distribution. Many of these new effects are being used for mood and mind illumination and are already being used in airplanes and light therapy. When applied to a home environment, the effects can be quite dramatic.
9. Low Voltage: LED lighting can be run off a low-voltage power supply and by connecting to an external solar energy source. This is again a cost effective use of powerful lighting for large outdoor spaces and yards.
It is safe to say that LED technology will only get better with time. Given all the positive attributes and the vigorous research that is underway, it only makes sense that all household lighting will be converted and the pricing will drop substantially. Until then, if you are remodeling anywhere in your home, consider it the ideal time to begin your transformation to a more durable, brighter and less costly mode of light. Along with the direction of an interior designer or decorator, your LED environment will be as satisfying to your senses as it will to your wallet in the long run.