Author
Message
Horseman
Team Member
Offline
Posts: 3120
Feedback: 100% (2)
Posted: 4/24/2012 6:41:19 AM EST
I've been starting a project at home, to replace my light bulbs with LED type bulbs.

There doesn't seem to be much reason to stick with incandescents. I don't really want CFs in my house.

LED lighting is still generally pretty expensive, but I've found that a bit of patience surfing on Amazon and elsewhere is paying off... there are lots of bulbs on sale for a quarter of list price or less.

So, figured I'd start a DIY thread to share pointers, gotchas, and ideas!
SGocka
Member
NRA
Offline
Posts: 19914
Feedback: 100% (1)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 6:46:13 AM EST
I installed an LED bulb in my exterior light fixture. It's on a light sensor so I wanted something that would last a long time and be cheap to run.

The LED is great. Plenty bright but it was pricey. I believe I paid around $30 for the bulb.
Even the mighty republic bleeds when struck.
89hawk
Offline
Posts: 1070
Feedback: 100% (2)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 11:08:56 AM EST
Where are the deals? Home Depot had 40 wat leds for $10.
I bought one for a lamp with a dimmer. It dims a little but not like a standard bulb.
Horseman
Team Member
Offline
Posts: 3121
Feedback: 100% (2)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 11:19:28 AM EST
So far:

I picked up six of these standard shape light bulbs off Amazon. They're still on sale. This was to replace two, three-bulb fixtures' worth in the laundry nook. They look really good, cool white and no flicker. There was one of the six that seems to be sized too big in the screw, and didn't fit. I swapped it off with a different one that I'd picked up (I think at Lowe's when I was first pondering LED lighting). The color is not the same with the replacement, but it's not noticeable. All of them are much whiter, and I think nicer looking, than the incandescents or CF I had in there. I'll try the oddball one in a different socket and see if I can use it.

Also got some of these color changing spots as well. They're destined for some track lighting, so I'll get those put in when I can get some help with the ladder work. They came in very OEM packaging, wrapped in bubble wrap and packing tape. Each one has a little card sized remote control.

Horseman
Team Member
Offline
Posts: 3122
Feedback: 100% (2)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 11:21:35 AM EST
Originally Posted By 89hawk:
Where are the deals? Home Depot had 40 wat leds for $10.
I bought one for a lamp with a dimmer. It dims a little but not like a standard bulb.


I think that might wind up being one of the big questions: how do these bulbs work with dimmers, and do we need to refit any fixtures to make them work their best?
Pita_146
Skunk Jihad Specialist
Offline
Posts: 33179
Feedback: 100% (4)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 4:21:14 PM EST
Tag for info.
fiver:
Many people think it is sad, but I would cease to function as a human being without my phone.
I don't care what they think, I get shit done. Hell, I even get vibrate alerts if my favorite girl is getting naked on the internet.
TheGrayMan
Confusion, misdirection, obfuscation
Military
Offline
Posts: 24003
Feedback: 100% (5)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 4:30:06 PM EST
Please tell me the color is better than the CF bulbs.

I've tried several brands of those, and they're ghastly.
"How can you know so little about this and be occupying a chair at the time that you do?"

-Christopher Hitchens to Ron Reagan Jr. on the topic of terrorism-
ti8589
Offline
Posts: 402
Feedback: 100% (3)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 4:32:03 PM EST
You have to look at the color rating of the bulb. I have LEDs in my home rated at 2700K and they look like std incandescent bulbs.
mylt1
Offline
Posts: 5287
Feedback: 100% (4)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/24/2012 8:16:47 PM EST
Originally Posted By TheGrayMan:
Please tell me the color is better than the CF bulbs.

I've tried several brands of those, and they're ghastly.


its all in the bulbs you buy. i have CFL's in almost all my lights now and they all produce light that is on par with either soft white or warm color lights. i may make the switch to LED's but not till we are in our new place.


as for dimming, there are special LED bulbs designed for dimming applications. they are the only options as far as i know. it will be listed on the package if they are able to be dimmed or not.
myfault
Offline
Posts: 334
Feedback: 0% (0)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/25/2012 8:59:49 AM EST
Originally Posted By 89hawk:
Where are the deals? Home Depot had 40 wat leds for $10.
I bought one for a lamp with a dimmer. It dims a little but not like a standard bulb.


what kind of dimmer did you get? I'm wondering if they have to be rated for led just like the cfl ones.
Pita_146
Skunk Jihad Specialist
Offline
Posts: 33199
Feedback: 100% (4)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/25/2012 9:52:02 AM EST
Does anyone have recommendations for LED bulbs? I've found it hard to find good, honest reviews. Also, do the LED bulbs act as spots, or do they throw light in all directions like a typical bulb would.
fiver:
Many people think it is sad, but I would cease to function as a human being without my phone.
I don't care what they think, I get shit done. Hell, I even get vibrate alerts if my favorite girl is getting naked on the internet.
Still_learning
Offline
Posts: 1279
Feedback: 0% (0)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/25/2012 7:14:10 PM EST
[Last Edit: 4/25/2012 7:16:11 PM EST by Still_learning]
Originally Posted By Pita_146:
I've found it hard to find good, honest reviews.



Boy!, you got that right.

Finding decent specs on lamp output is also very difficult. The light output rating and the beam pattern are almost never specified or is buried if you can find it. I really feel we are in an era of caveat emptor with these lamps. The marketplace (sellers as well as buyers) is so immature, how/why did Congress ever mandate incandescents away before finding a suitable replacement.

$40 for a light bulb???

Unknown characterisitics of a component that costs $40???

I do "photonics" as a profession and I am very unhappy with what I've found.
ACEB36TC
Member
Online
Posts: 3036
Feedback: 0% (0)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/26/2012 4:23:33 AM EST
I put 130+ LED "par" type bulbs in our new home over two years ago and couldn`t be happier. We found that the bulbs we purchased were designed around "Lutron" type dimmers and used all Lutron stuff in the entire home. They work like a champ! I have had ZERO failures so far and our monthly bill is absurdly low. These bulbs put off almost no heat. They are bright and effective in all locations. I bought them through a co. in California called "environmental lighting". You can find them on the web. The folks there knew their stuff! Quick shipping and fair prices. My home is 8000 ft. under roof with 3200 ft. hvac. (big porches!) Out electric bill averages about $250/month. I love it!
Still_learning
Offline
Posts: 1280
Feedback: 0% (0)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/26/2012 6:52:59 AM EST
[Last Edit: 4/26/2012 6:58:07 AM EST by Still_learning]
So, ... C you tell us which bulbs bought and for which applications? Things like make, model, light output ratings, equivalent incandescent rating, color balance,... would be great info.


Let's see,... $35/bulb * 130 bulbs = $4500 YIKES!

Still, it might be of interest to me for one application I have in mind. I would like to replace some 75W halogen track lighting (spots and floods) with LEDs. The reason is to reduce the electrical load on the branch circuit and to reduce heating in the well insulated room during the summer months. That there might also be a life cycle cost savings is an added benefit. In this application, I am not willing to reduce the light level just to save on electricity. I need good color quality and high light levels (bright, total output of light must be high).
ACEB36TC
Member
Online
Posts: 3038
Feedback: 0% (0)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/28/2012 4:32:01 AM EST
Originally Posted By Still_learning:
So, ... C you tell us which bulbs bought and for which applications? Things like make, model, light output ratings, equivalent incandescent rating, color balance,... would be great info.


Let's see,... $35/bulb * 130 bulbs = $4500 YIKES!

Still, it might be of interest to me for one application I have in mind. I would like to replace some 75W halogen track lighting (spots and floods) with LEDs. The reason is to reduce the electrical load on the branch circuit and to reduce heating in the well insulated room during the summer months. That there might also be a life cycle cost savings is an added benefit. In this application, I am not willing to reduce the light level just to save on electricity. I need good color quality and high light levels (bright, total output of light must be high).


Actually it was closer to $70/bulb. I did the math and I`m VERY pleased with our decision. I am of the school of "long term" consequences. JjUST CALL THE FOLKS IN CALI,,,,THEY KNOW THEIR STUFF!

ACEB36TC
Member
Online
Posts: 3039
Feedback: 0% (0)
Link To This Post
Posted: 4/28/2012 4:32:15 AM EST
Originally Posted By Still_learning:
So, ... C you tell us which bulbs bought and for which applications? Things like make, model, light output ratings, equivalent incandescent rating, color balance,... would be great info.


Let's see,... $35/bulb * 130 bulbs = $4500 YIKES!

Still, it might be of interest to me for one application I have in mind. I would like to replace some 75W halogen track lighting (spots and floods) with LEDs. The reason is to reduce the electrical load on the branch circuit and to reduce heating in the well insulated room during the summer months. That there might also be a life cycle cost savings is an added benefit. In this application, I am not willing to reduce the light level just to save on electricity. I need good color quality and high light levels (bright, total output of light must be high).


Actually it was closer to $70/bulb. I did the math and I`m VERY pleased with our decision. I am of the school of "long term" consequences. JjUST CALL THE FOLKS IN CALI,,,,THEY KNOW THEIR STUFF!