What is an LED?
LED stands for light emitting diodes. The technology uses a semi-conductor that emits light when an electrical current is passed through it.
You’ll notice that LEDs are only warm to the touch, rather than hot. They generate a lot less heat and therefore are much more efficient than traditional bulbs. They contain no glass, are hard wearing and non-toxic as they contain no mercury – so they’re better for the environment.
There are so many different types of LED lighting, how do I go about selecting the right one?
LED lights are like most things; you get what you pay for. There are cheap LEDs but they tend not to last as long and can be less efficient. They may also have high levels of ‘flicker’ which can contribute to eye strain or headaches if you spend a lot of time under the light. Good quality, flicker free LED lights will reduce this problem.
In round terms a 60 watt traditional bulb is equivalent to an LED light of about 800 lumens. For a ‘warm white’ light, similar to a traditional bulb, look for an LED light that has a colour temperature of 2700-3000 K.
What is lumen (lm)?
We are accustomed to buying lamps according to their watts (W) – however wattage is actually a measure of energy use rather than the brightness.
Lumens (lm) is a more accurate measure of brightness, and most LEDs sold now state the lumens along with wattage (or amount of energy they consume). In round terms a 60 watt traditional bulb is equivalent to an LED light of 800 lumens.
I already have low energy lighting; will LED provide further savings?
Yes, though the difference won’t be as significant as moving from a traditional incandescent light. LED lights are by far the most energy efficient type of lighting.
How long will LED last compare to traditional lighting?
LED lamps last between 25,000 hours and 50,000 hours, depending on how they are used and the quality of the lighting. This is on average 50 times longer than a traditional incandescent lamp and 10 times longer than a compact fluorescent.
Would switching to LED Lighting help the environment?
Definitely. In December 2018 an analysis of government figures by The Carbon Brief showed that energy efficient products like LED lights have had as great an impact as renewable energy, if not more, in cutting CO2 emissions.
Moving to LED lighting is one of the quickest, easiest and least expensive measures you can take to reduce your CO2 usage, which is great news for the environment.
How much can I potentially save on switching over to LED lighting?
LEDs can be up to 90% more efficient than traditional bulbs, meaning they could pay for themselves in as little as a few months.
We find that clients typically make savings of 60-80% on lighting energy bills, depending on what types of bulbs were used previously.
What is colour temperature/correlated colour temperature (CCT)?
The colour of light varies from the warm yellow of a flame to the bluish light of daylight. Lighting in general and LED lighting specifically is available in various colour temperatures (measured in Kelvin, or K). Indoor lighting typically varies from around 2700 K for a warm light (for bedrooms and lounges), to around 4000 k for a neutral white (good for offices and classrooms).
Do I have to change the whole fitting or can I just change the lights?
In most domestic situations, it is possible to swap a traditional bulb for an LED without changing the fitting, provided that it is compatible. In most commercial situations, due to the types of fittings used, these will need to be changed as well as the lights themselves.
It is a good idea to test a LED in the intended fixture before purchasing large quantities, if possible. LED lamps can vary in diameter, neck size and pin length compared to typical bulbs, so it is important to check that the LED has the correct base and will fit into the existing housing.
Are LED Lights dimmable?
Yes, dimmable LED lights are readily available and will work well with the majority of dimmers used for incandescent lighting. However it is important to check that the power rating of the dimmer switch is sufficient for the number of lamps on the circuit.
What happens with the old lights?
Standard, incandescent bulbs should go into normal waste disposal – in most areas they cannot be recycled. Energy saving lights (compact fluorescent lights) and fluorescent tubes contain small amounts of mercury and need to be safely disposed of. When we install, we ensure that old lights are disposed of safely and in a way that is WEEE complaint.
In terms of household bulbs, many local waste disposal and recycling centres accept and safely dispose of old florescent lamps.
During an install project, is there much disruption?
We know that keeping disruption to a minimum is important for businesses, so it is important to us as well. Before the installation begins, we will agree a schedule that works for your organisation.
For example, when working in schools we can schedule works in school holidays and during evenings and weekends. We also clean up our mess as we go. As one client said, “We hardly knew they were there!”
What happens if a light fails shortly after the installation?
All our products have a five year warranty and we only use high quality lights and fittings that are intended to last for many years. If a light should fail within the warranty period, just let us know and we will gladly replace it.
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