LED Light Bulbs for Energy Efficiency

Nowadays many of us are looking for ways to be more efficient when it comes to saving energy and saving money! There are many emerging technologies that will help with this.

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LED light bulbs have been improving in efficiency and cost in the last few months. CFL light bulbs contain mercury which many people don’t like, and Incandescent light bulbs are cheap but not very energy efficient. I for one am starting to replace dying light bulbs with LED, especially in those areas where I need constant lighting. Price is still not the best but in the long term I expect to save, plus the prices have dropped from a year ago, so it’s a good time to start.

LED light bulbs will eventually be what we use to replace incandescent bulbs – CFLs are a temporary solution to energy-efficient lighting. The reason LEDs have not yet displaced CFLs from the market are twofold: the first generation LED bulbs had a narrow and focused light beam, and the cost of the LED bulbs was too high.

Recent developments in LED technology, however, have been addressing these issues. LEDs have been ‘clustered’ to provide more light, and mounted within diffuser lenses which spread the light across a wider area. And advancements in manufacturing technology have driven the prices down to a level where LED bulbs are more cost-effective than CFLs or incandescent bulbs. This trend is continuing, with LED bulbs being designed for more applications while the prices are going down over time.

The ‘sticker shock’ of the new LEDs remains a deterrent to their widespread acceptance by consumers. The following comparison charts illustrate the value of the latest LED bulbs when compared with CFLs and incandescents for overall efficiency as well as cost-effectiveness.

Cost Comparison between LEDs, CFLs and Incandescent light bulbs:

LED CFL Incandescent
Light bulb projected lifespan
50,000 hours
10,000 hours
1,200 hours
Watts per bulb (equiv. 60 watts)
10
14
60
Cost per bulb
$35.95
$3.95
$1.25
KWh of electricity used over

50,000 hours

500
700
3000
Cost of electricity (@ 0.10per KWh)
$50
$70
$300
Bulbs needed for 50k hours of use
1
5
42
Equivalent 50k hours bulb expense
$35.95
$19.75
$52.50
Total cost for 50k hours
$85.75
$89.75
$352.50

Energy Savings over 50,000 hours, assuming 25 bulbs per household:

Total cost for 25 bulbs
$2143.75
$2243.75
$8812.50
Savings to household by switching

from incandescents

$6668.75
$6568.75
0

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