Light sources based on the technology of light-emitting diodes (LED) represent an innovative and revolutionary solution for main or complementary lighting in homes, offices, commercial premises, industrial interiors as well as exteriors, including street lighting.
Energy efficiency is not the only main advantage of LED lights, but it is also their environment-friendly aspect in which they hardly find any competition. However, there are huge differences among the LED products on the market and that is why you should be very careful in the process of choosing (try our guidelines further on this page).
Advantages of LED Technology
- up to 85% less energy consumption compared to incandescent bulbs
- lifespan at least 25 times longer than that of conventional bulbs
- full lumen output immediately after start
- dimmability and control of light intensity
- long-term costs savings compared to incandescent bulbs
- zero content of mercury and other environmentally hazardous substances
How to Choose the “Right One”?
To get as many benefits as possible from LED technology in lighting, it is necessary to choose the right products. There is a short description of key factors:
When you decide to replace traditional bulbs with LED sources or when you are choosing lights for a new room, you should always pay attention to luminous flux (or luminous output) of the light source. Luminous flux is a value in lumens (lm) and simply means how much light the source emits – for example, luminous flux of a traditional 60-Watt bulb is about 700 lm or 410 lm for a traditional 40-Watt bulb (more in the table below); the adequate replacement will be therefore a LED source with the corresponding luminous flux.
|Traditional bulb:||15 W||25 W||40 W||60 W||75 W||100 W||150 W|
|Luminous flux:||119 lm||217 lm||410 lm||702 lm||920 lm||1 326 lm||2 137 lm|
Colour Rendering Index
Colour Rendering Index (CRI) is another important factor that should not be forgotten. It is a number between 0 and 100 which states how faithfully the light source shows colours. If the CRI equals 0, you are not able to recognize colours, and if it is close to 100, the colour rendering is natural. CRI of light sources and fittings should be around 80 at least or higher.
Colour temperature (CCT) is very important if you want to have lighting that is comfortable and functional. CCT is stated in kelvins (K) and says how cool or warm the white light of the light source or fitting seems. The rule is simple – the more kelvins, the cooler light.
- The colour temperature of 3000 K corresponds with the warm white colour of light, typical for incandescent bulbs. Warm white is suitable for relaxation and resting.
- The colour temperature of 4000 K is the so-called neutral white colour of light and from 5000 K, we talk about cool white colour of light. Neutral white and cool white are good for work and various activities that strain your eyes (e.g. reading).
Type of LED chip used in the light is crucial for lifespan, luminous output and lighting qualities of the source or fitting. SMD, High Power or COB LEDs made by reputable world producers should be preferred. DIP LED type (i.e. many small LEDs next to each other) is now considered as obsolete owing to its low luminous intensity and shorter lifespan.
Safety and Ecology
If you want to be sure that the product you are buying is safe and eco-friendly, choose those certified in compliance with European standards and holding a corresponding label – CE and RoHS most frequently.