LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes) are vastly superior to CFLs in terms of efficiency, dimming, and lumen output. An LED is a semiconductor light source; when a light-emitting diode is switched on, electrons are able to recombine with electron holes within the device, releasing energy in the form of photons. The resulting color of the light corresponds to the energy of the photon, producing an effect called electroluminescence.
LEDs have been the go-to solution for task lighting for some time now, but they are slowly showing promise as incandescent replacements. Improved technology has given way to more ambient LEDs, and these bulbs are extremely energy-efficient -- You can now replace your standard 60-watt incandescent bulb with an LED bulb that uses only 12.5 watts of energy and will last a whole lot longer. LED lights use only 10-20% of the electricity needed for the equivalent light in incandescents, and they last about 50 times longer. Due to their unique design, LEDs dim beautifully, emit hardly any heat, are cool to the touch.
When it comes to energy efficiency, the easiest way to start cutting down your monthly bill is through your home’s lighting. By making simple changes to the types of bulbs you’re using, you can be more eco-friendly while saving yourself a pretty penny. Due to all the changes the green lighting industry has undergone in just the last few years, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with all the options that are available. But fear not – if you’re looking for some insight into the wealth of green lighting alternatives available today, this handy guide will give you the basic foundation you need to upgrade your bulbs and reap the financial and environmental benefits of energy-efficient lighting!
SOME IMPORTANT LIGHTING TERMS
Watt: This unit measures the power that is needed for a certain application – for instance you need 100 watts to run a 100 watt light bulb. Technically, this is defined as the amount of Joules per second.
Volts: A unit of measure that expresses how many electrons flow through a given circuit. For example, if you compare this concept to the water in pipes, it is equal to the water pressure, or more specifically, how fast or slow the water is flowing. Generally speaking, the US standard for homes is 110 Volts but in Europe it is 220 volts.
Lumens: These units are used to measure the power of light that is perceived by the human eye. These measurements are intended to gauge the varying sensitivity of the human eye to different wavelengths of light,
Kelvin: This unit is used to measure temperature. In relation to lighting it is the most important number to look at to determine the color of fluorescents and LEDs. The lower the Kelvin temperature the warmer the color of the light, and the higher the temperature the more blue and cool the light is.