What are the different types of LED lighting available?
Over the last few years LED lighting has developed considerably which means that many businesses and homes are starting to consider it as an economical and green way of lighting a property. The problem in the past has been that the bulbs were not producing enough light for everyday use and were generally considered to be too expensive. Both these problems have now largely been solved and there are a variety of different types of LED lighting that homes and offices can now choose from.
Discover the benefits of LED lighting.
Types of LED Bulb
In the recent past, LED lighting used to be fairly limited with few designs to choose from. With greater advances in the technology, you can now get a range of styles including candles, GLS, golf balls, reflectors, spotlights and tubes. These have varying powers equivalent to everyday incandescent bulbs and can now be found with a variety of fittings including screw and bayonet. The cost too is now comparable with other bulbs and can provide significant savings in electricity bills.
The light emitted by normal LED bulbs comes in three different varieties which are:
- Warm white which is used in most homes and is similar to current halogen bulbs.
- Cool white is a similar colour to fluorescent tubes such as those you find in shops and offices.
- Daylight colour is a stark white light and has a hint of blue to it, used mainly for highlighting real colour.
As with other lightbulbs you can use a dimmer switch with LED lighting. The caveat to this is that your normal dimmer switch that may have worked with an incandescent bulb won’t work with LED lighting and will have to be replaced. The reason for this is just that LED lighting works at a lower wattage than other bulbs.
LED Lighting Tubes
LED lighting tubes are designed to replace fluorescent tubes and in some cases can be just simple drop in replacements. Other tube designs will need rewiring and a new ballast. These generally work by providing a series of smaller LED lights along the length of the tube and are available in most sizes that you would normally expect.
SMD stands for Surface Mounted Device and they are one of the new generation of LED lighting. Bulbs contain SMD chips that add the extra brightness that has made it a more viable choice for both households and offices.
COB stands for Chip on Board which are another new generation of LED technology and provides a denser amount of light compared to SMD and great optics because you get a consistent beam of controlled light. It provides a better lumen to watt ratio which means that they are considered highly efficient.
The BBC reported recently the development of a light that has a filament shaped LED which is coated with graphene. It is set to be available in late 2015, is probably going to be cheaper than exisiting LED bulbs and boasts a reduction in energy bills of around 10%. Graphene use in lighting was discovered by two Russian scientists working at Manchester University in 2004 and the battle is now on to find new and innovative uses for the material which is highly durable.
Why We Now Use Lumens
Wattage used to be the way that we judged the brightness of a bulb which was fine when we just had incandescent bulbs. The trouble is that different bulbs need different amounts of electricity to produce the same amount of light. We know talk in terms of lumens which is a distinct measure of the light produced – the higher the value the brighter the bulb.
Below is a comparison of different bulbs and their value in lumens.
|LED||4 w||6 w||10 w||13 w||18 w|
|Standard||25 w||40 w||60 w||75 w||100 w|
|CFL||6 w||9 w||12 w||15 w||20 w|
|Halogen||18 w||28 w||42 w||53 w||70 w|
Find out how LED lighting works here.
There’s no doubt that LED lighting is far more efficient at converting watts to light and some manufacturers say that there are 90% savings over the old fashioned incandescent bulbs. LED technology is one of the most exciting developments in green energy over the last few years and research is starting to develop more efficient and cheaper bulbs that can make a real difference to people’s bills in the future.