8 Things You Need to Know Before You Switch to LED Bulbs

led bulbs
https://energy.gov/energysaver/led-lighting

LED bulbs have grown in popularity over the past few years and it's not hard to see why. Not only do they last longer, but they can save you a ton in energy bills when compared to the less efficient incandescent. However, before you pop into the store to purchase new LEDs to replace your current lights, here are some interesting facts to consider.

Brightness:
For one, you'll find that there's a kaleidoscope of LED light hues to choose from, but it's wise to not just pick any old one. How do you know which hue is the right fit for your space? While the brightness in incandescent is measured in watts, the brightness of LED lights is measured and reflected in lumens (lm). The higher the lumens rating written on the box, the brighter the light emanated by the bulb within.

Color:
LEDs are able to display a wider spectrum of color than incandescent, which means you'll be spoilt for choice with options ranging from purples to yellows, reds, and whites- all in different tones. However, “going with a more traditional option like soft white or yellow is probably a good idea in the long run, as these shades tend to mimic the warmth of natural light and feel more familiar in general”, said Mario, founder, and CEO at Sonica Led. Plus, you have to choose something neutral that you'll be satisfied with in the long run, as LED bulbs tend to have a really long life span.  

Cost:
When compared to incandescent bulbs, LEDs are a bit pricier because they offer more value for money in the long term. They have a longer life span, produce less heat and even come with technological features like remote controlling from a mobile device. The best way to get a fast return on your investment in LED bulbs is to replace a large portion of your bulbs with LEDs at the same time. You'll see significant drops in your energy bill in no time.

LEDs and Dimmers:
Surprisingly, most LED lights are incompatible with traditional dimmer switches, which means that you might have to replace those switches with more LED friendly ones. You see, dimmers work by decreasing the amount of energy that gets sent to a light bulb, thus saving you energy. However, LEDs are already energy-efficient, so there's really no need to be using dimmers with them in the first place, as their brightness is by no means an indication of the energy being used. But for those who prefer to keep their dimmers, there are LED optimised dimmers that you can purchase to replace your traditional ones, or you can purchase a dimmer-compatible LED light. Both are rather expensive options, but it's better to know beforehand what you'll be getting yourself into, and they're well worth the cost in the end.

Placement:
LED bulbs need to be placed in an open fixture to allow heat to escape through the bulb's base. This keeps it cool and prevents overheating, thus prolonging its lifespan. That said, LED bulbs are great for bringing light into little nooks and crannies such as below the kitchen counter or inside the pantry, as they emit a brilliant glow of warm light that completely fills the space. So try and fit the bulbs into open ended fixtures, while keeping with the style of your home.

Longevity and Maintenance:
To ensure longevity, try and get a good quality LED bulb, one that's durable and resistant to breaking, and a price is usually a good indicator of that. Maintenance of the bulb is easy and involves occasionally checking the fixtures connected to the bulbs to ensure that no faulty connections happen over time. If you happen to have an issue with your LED bulbs fizzing out, get an electrician to come check it out. It could be an easy fix involving a general issue concerning your home's electrical circuitry.  

Fitting:
Are you getting the right size LED bulbs to fit your fixtures? Consider the fact that different light bulbs go with different fittings, and the best way to know if the LED bulbs you're buying will fit on your fixtures is to carry the incandescent bulbs that you'll be replacing, to get an accurate size measurement.

Tech Features:
As mentioned, you can operate an LED light bulb from a smartphone device. But what's, even more, fun is the fact that you can also adjust the colors on your LED bulb to create a smorgasbord of colors using platforms like LIFX and Phillips Hue. Now, if that's not impressive, then I don't know what is.

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