With prices that continue to decline, LED bulbs provide the same warm glow as traditional bulbs but offer numerous key advantages and are available for desk lamps, recessed fixtures, kitchen track lighting and task lights. Energy Trust added a purchasing guide to its website to help consumers find the right LED bulb for their needs.
LED bulbs are long-lasting and extremely energy efficient. ENERGY STAR® qualified LEDs are rated to last at least 25,000 hours, which is about 25 years of lamp life on average. For comparison, a compact fluorescent bulb lasts seven to 10 years on average and a standard incandescent bulb lasts about one year. ENERGY STAR qualified LEDs also use up to 85 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs and maintain a constant, well-distributed light output over their entire rated lifetime. While incandescent and fluorescent bulbs emit light in all directions, LEDs can emit light in a specific direction, increasing efficiency and effectiveness by only producing light where it’s needed.
Before purchasing LED bulbs, consumers should consider how the bulb will be used. Does the fixture have a dimmer? Is it indoors or outdoors? There are LEDs for all of these purposes, and it’s important to select an appropriate bulb for the intended use. Installing a non-dimmable LED bulb in a dimmable fixture can cause it to flicker and buzz. Consumers should also look for ENERGY STAR qualified LED lighting products, which must pass a variety of tests from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to prove they’ll provide optimal performance and deliver on the promise of LED lighting’s many great benefits.