Light bulbs, are necessary items in our modern lives but are given hardly any thought or consideration until they fail. What’s their cost for replacement and energy efficiency and how do the different types compare? Burley Electrical Services has prepared a brief list to help decide what is best for your home or business.
Incandescent Light Bulb Ban
Incandescent light bulbs were the standard since Edison developed them in the late 1870’s. A wire, usually tungsten enveloped in a glass covered vacuum or filled with inert gas, served modern civilization from the late 19th century to the near present. The problem is that nearly 95% of the energy used by the bulb is converted to heat, and less than 5% is utilized as light. Usage in the U.S. was to be phased out by 2014.
Fluorescent Light Bulbs
Fluorescent light bulbs are low pressure gas lights filled with mercury-vapor and utilize gas-discharge to produce luminance. Mercury vapor is excited by the passing of electrons through the light and produce short wave ultraviolet light that react with a coating to produce visible light. Coatings are altered to produce multiple colors. The higher the color temperature, the closer it becomes to white light. Low temperate bulbs tend to be reddish-yellow, while higher temperature lighting is closer to white light. Some color inhibits sight while others are more efficient. Cool white is 4100 K (degrees Kelvin) and is used in most office lighting. Daylight is a bluish-white light rated at between 5000 and 6500 K. Residential light uses warm-white fluorescents and are about 2700 K. From the long straight tubes in commercial building to the “curly-twisty” incandescent replacements, compact fluorescent lights (CFL) contribute to the majority lighting of America.
Fluorescent Light Bulb Problems; Ballast, Disposal & Flickering
Now the downside, fluorescent lighting requires a ballast of some type. The bulbs are filled with argon gas, and a small amount of mercury. The starting ballast is an electronic device that regulates the voltage passing through the bulb. The ballast provides a high start up voltage and switching to a lower running voltage. Mercury is a poisonous metal that is a liquid at room temperature. It results in environmental concerns when discarded and health concerns when broken. The light produced by fluorescence flickers may have health concerns for epileptics, the autistic and vertigo suffers among others.
Halogen Light Bulbs
Quartz-halogen light is a tungsten wired filament incandescent light filled with iodine or bromine. It operates at a high temperature by using a halogen cycle. As the tungsten evaporates it is deposited on the bromine causing a chemical reaction; the tungsten to redeposit on the filament. They produce high and constant illumination over their lifetime in a compact package. Used in projector bulbs, vehicle external lighting, halogen ovens, stage lighting and public lighting.
Sodium-vapour lights are gas discharged lighting using sodium vapor. They are used principally in street lighting and give poor color (people see better in white light verses the yellow of typical sodium vapor lighting). They are not generally encountered in commercial indoor or domestic lighting.
LED or Light Emitting Diodes
LED or light emitting diodes have a initial high entry cost, but a much lower energy consumption and increased operational time providing economy over the life of the product. Many LEDs are rated for 10,000 hours of use before failure. Wattage, lumens and color temperature are used in rating LED lighting. LED lighting is projected to grow to a $25 Billion industry by 2023, a projected 25% compound growth rate from 2014.
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Contact Burley Electrical Services to get your LED or other lights installed today for your commercial or residential property!