Common mistakes when switching to LED
“Watt is equal to visible light, right ... or?”
This is one of the most common mistakes that can occur when switching from a traditional light source to LED. We all know that LED lamps use less energy than traditional light sources. Still, it is very common to mix up watt with visible light, what we call lumen. Watt is the unit that indicates the power used by the light source or any electrical device for that matter. With halogen, incandescent or fluorescent lamps etc. we were used to choose our lamp depending on the watt, as it was an indication of how much light it emitted. But we cannot do this when it comes to LED lamps. LED lamps use a considerably less amount of energy, a 60W incandescent bulb has a similar light output as a 5W or 7W LED bulb. Therefore we need to turn our eyes to the unit lumen. Lumen is the unit of luminous flux and a measure of the quantity of visible light emitted by a light source.
Still it can be tricky to know exactly how many lumen your LED lamp should have, in order to get a similar amount of brightness as your old lamp. A clue is to check the wattage of your old light source and find a replacer for the same watt. On our site you can easily use the filter on the left to find a LED replacer for the wattage your old lamp uses. You can also read this guide of Watt to Lumen to find the equivalent amount of lumen for your new LED lamp.
Thinking that LED only comes in cold white colour temperatures
There are two concepts that are important when buying LED lamps - colour temperature and colour code. When LED light first were introduced to the marked, it had a very cold almost bluish light. Many people still think that LED lamps only has a very cold white light, but this is not entirely correct. Since it was first introduced, LED has developed fast and is now available in both very warm and colder colour temperatures.
If you want to replace your old incandescent lamp without losing its warm and cozy light you can of course do so. What you need to know is that LED lamps have different colour temperatures. The colour temperature is measured in Kelvin (K) and can range from a very deep glowing red (2200K) to a bluish white light (6500K). The lower the Kelvin, the warmer the light. Make sure you buy the same colour temperature for lamps that you want to place next to each other, otherwise the difference might be too pronounced.
The second concept to be aware of is colour rendering, CRI. This is especially important if you purchase light for your shop, a museum, gallery, showroom or personal art at home. CRI indicates how well a light source renders colours of the object it illuminates. It is measured on a scale of 0-100 where 100 is the best. Normal light sources in our homes have a CRI over 80, but for special applications such as museums etc. a CRI of 90-99 is recommended.
These following products all have an excellent CRI.
Philips LEDspot ExpertColor GU10
- Perfect for accent lighting
- Lifetime: 40.000 hours
- Available in tree colour temperatures
- 5 years warranty
Noxion LED Tracklight 3-Phase Accento
- Replaces CDM
- Perfect for shops & museum
- Lifetime: 50.000 hours
- Warm white 3000K & cold white 4000K
- 5 years warranty
Noxion LED Spot Diamond IP44
- Water resistant: IP44
- Lifetime: 50.000 hours
- Extra Warm white 2700K
- 5 years warranty
Not taking into consideration that LED has a different light distribution
Replacing your traditional lamp with LED you might experience a different, more concentrated light distribution. This may affect the atmosphere of the room or that the light doesn’t illuminate quite the whole area that you planned to illuminate. This is due to the placement of the LED diodes in the light source. LED emit the light forward, where light is needed. Directional light is although very beneficial considering the less energy necessary to emit the same brightness, and the more light that is emitted forward, the less is lost inside the fixture.
To make sure your new LED bulb have the same light distribution you need to check the beam angle. For example, if you want to replace an A-shaped incandescent bulb with LED, choose an A-shaped LED bulb that are omnidirectional, that emit the light in all directions.
Buying a LED bulb without controlling your dimmer’s compatibility with LED lamps
Has it ever happened to you that you bought a new LED lamp, installed it in your fixture, and when you wanted to dim your new bulb to make the dinner atmosphere extra cozy - the bulb just wouldn’t dim? Or perhaps it started to flicker or made a very annoying buzzing sound?
Since LED lamps use a lower wattage than your dimmer at home, this problem can easily occur. A 60W incandescent lamp does not require as much nominal load to give the same brightness (7-9W) and therefore the margin to adjust the brightness is smaller. Therefore we need to use dimmable LED lamps with LED dimmers which are adjusted to the lower wattage of LED lamps. You can also choose a LED lamp that doesn’t require a dimmer to dim. For example, a Philips Sceneswitch is dimmed through your light switch.
Buying a cheap LED lamp
LED lamps are usually more expensive than traditional light sources, but for a good reason. When weighing your options between the cheaper or the more expensive one, you might choose the less expensive LED lamp, to save money. Although, you might regret this. Since quality costs more, you lose quality when choosing a cheaper lamp.
A more expensive lamp from a well known brand has a higher quality overall. Its LED chip, construction and light quality will be better. For example, phosphor is a costly element in the production of LED lamps. Cheap producers use low quality phosphor to reduce production costs. You can see this when the LED chips in your LED spot has a different colours of white. Maintaining the same white colour is a challenging task for LED producers, and therefore the cost naturally rises. With higher quality comes also a longer life time. To buy the more expensive light source is therefore an investment for the long term.
You don't make sure your LED lamp comes with a warranty
The warranty does have an important connection to the quality of the product you buy. You need to remember to check the warranty of your new LED lamp. A warning is if your product comes without warranty. Then there is a risk that your newly purchased LED is of very low quality. All the LED lights and LED fixtures that are sold on our page come with a warranty of one to five years. This ensures you as a customer that you are protected against eventual flaws or faults in your product, making the switch to LED as risk free and as easy as possible.
As you see there are some factors to take into consideration before upgrading your traditional light source to LED. We hope that this blog will hasn’t made you hesitant in you desire to choose a sustainable and energy friendly light solution but that we have helped you to make the switch easy and problem free. If you do have any questions regarding LED or upgrading to LED, please don’t hesitate to contact our customer service and we will help you.