Following on from our article last week when we explained what LED lights are and in which shapes they are most commonly available, we now go into detail on the many benefits of LED lighting.
LED lighting has found its way into our homes and will become the standard in domestic lighting within the next couple of years. (Photo source: Fotolia)
LEDs have an extremely long lifespan compared to other types of lamps. Let’s compare: a halogen lamp has an average lifespan of 3,000 hours, while the lifespan of LEDs ranges from 50,000 up to 100,000 hours. Given a use of 8 hours per day, the halogen lamp will last about a year. LEDs on the other hand will last for at least 17 years. However, this does not mean that they will always last this long in real life. LEDs are controlled by a feed and electronics. The latter needs to be of sufficient quality in order to match the LED’s life expectancy.
This long lifetime has an additional advantage. The lamps or fixtures require far less replacement. This is a real benefit for lighting in locations that are difficult to access, for instance high ceilings in entrance halls and staircases.
Durable construction and limited heat
LEDs are not sensitive to vibrations and cold. They can also be watertight, making them weatherproof and easily applicable in outdoor conditions.
In addition, they emit only a limited amount of heat, increasing their safety when you touch them while they are lit. Small children cannot burn themselves, which is certainly not true of traditional light bulbs and halogen lamps. The limited heat emission is also an advantage for lighting in low-energy or passive homes. The heating system needs to answer the heating need, not the lights.
Dimming and colours
In principle, LEDs are dimmable. However, not every fixture or LED lamp available in stores are so equipped. Whether or not these lamps can be dimmed depends largely on the type of controls that are built into the socket or fixture. In general, the LED lamp’s packaging mentions whether or not the light can be dimmed.
Besides monochromatic and white LEDs, there also exist so-called multi-coloured LEDs, which contain three LEDs within a single casing. They are also referred to as RGB LEDs. RGB stands for the colours red, green and blue. With these three colours and the right controls, you can set a wide array of lighting colours, enabling you to choose the proper colour for each mood.
White LEDs are available in various colour temperatures, ranging from cold white light to warm white, comparable to the light emitted by a light bulb.
Low in consumption and environmentally friendly
LEDs have a high degree of efficiency. Nearly all of the supplied energy is transformed into light. Compared with other lamps, they produce far more light per unit of supplied energy (lumen/Watt). This makes them very energy-friendly compared to light bulbs and halogen lamps. This can lead to savings of up to 90% on the energy used for lighting. A direct result is a lower CO2 emission.
In addition, no sulphur, fluorescent powder, mercury fumes or other dangerous metals are used during production, as is the case with energy saving and halogen lamps.
On the rise
The past couple of years, LED lighting was found in bars, hotels and office spaces. Since then, this type of lighting has increasingly found its way into our homes. Its purchase price might be a bit more expensive, but its long lifespan and its much lower energy use result in a payback time of one to three years, depending on the average amount of operating hours per day.