How to Choose Your Energy-Saving Light Bulbs

Since energy-saving light bulbs became standard, shoppers have had a lot to think about when making their light bulb purchasing decisions. You don’t simply look for a screw fitting or a bayonet fitting any more – you’ve got to pay attention to a whole lot more detail. Here we look at the key things you’ve got to consider when you are buying energy-saving light bulbs to make sure you get the right bulbs at the right price.

Look for the Right Fitting

In the past this was practically the only decision you had to make, and it’s still important although today there are many more options to choose from. Coming back from the shops with a bag full of bulbs that fit none of your lights is frustrating. The best thing you can do is to take an old bulb along to the shop with you. Compare the new bulbs to find the right match. If you can’t take the bulb, look at reference material that shows the most common fittings and see which one will match your lights at home.

Choose the Right Type of Bulb

The standard type of energy saving bulb is the CFL – compact fluorescent lamp. You can also buy halogen lamps and LEDs – look at the range of Electrical Supplies and bulbs to find out how they differ in terms of appearance. The cheapest bulb to run is the LED. LEDs use much less energy than regular bulbs and will last up to 25 years. They are expensive to buy but you can keep them for much longer than other bulbs.

The most expensive is the halogen bulb. Halogen bulbs are not much more efficient than a standard bulb and do not have a long life span. The light from these bulbs is similar to the light from traditional bulbs which is why many people prefer them.

The CFL is cheap to run and cheap to buy, which is why it is the most widely available type of bulb. In the past this type of bulb was slow to get bright but that issue is not so much of a problem now. These bulbs are more efficient than standard bulbs but the light emitted is not to everyone’s taste.

Pick the Colour and Brightness

The brightness of the light used to be measured in watts and now, with energy-saving bulbs, is measured in lumens. The higher the lumen rating, the brighter the light. To light a complete living room you need a combination of bulbs that add up to between 1,500 and 3,000 lumens. One bedside lamp will be around 400 lumens. The colour of the bulb is measured on the Kelvin scale and it is a scale of colour temperature, with the traditional light bulb giving around a 2,700 rating while, for comparison, a candle is 1,600. The CRI score is also important – the Colour Rendering Index is a measure of how accurately the light represents colour. A rating of 80 is just about acceptable, but halogen lights have a rating of almost 100, making them almost perfect.

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