Now that I’ve had a couple of LED bulbs burn out, I can actually give an LED bulb longevity report.
I’ve been buying LED bulbs since 2010, and now I’ve lost three of them. It’s a little disappointing, but two of the bulbs were Philips 420240 bulbs, which are no longer on the market. The first 420240 failed completely within a couple of weeks of getting it, and I exchanged it for a Cree. The second 420240 lasted a shade over two years. Clearly the 420240 just wasn’t a very good bulb, and it accounted for my first LED bulb mortality.
My other failed bulb is one of the early 40W equivalents I bought at either Lowe’s or Home Depot in 2010 or early 2011. So I got about four years out of that one, which is better than Philips at least.
I’ve been hearing a lot of complaints about CFL bulbs lately. I’ve written about how to address premature CFL burnout before, but I guess it bears repeating. It’s a five-minute fix, usually, to get the bulbs to last a while. So here’s what to do if your CFL bulbs burn out quickly.
CFL bulbs do seem to be more sensitive to minor electrical problems than older bulbs. Fixing the tab in your light socket or replacing your light switch is often enough to make the bulbs last as long as the package said they would.
While installing a new garage door opener, I found a curious statement in the manual: Don’t use LED bulbs. Why can’t you use LED bulbs in a garage door opener? Six words: LED bulb garage door opener interference. Read more
LED lighting seems to change constantly. I read about Cree’s LED bulbs a good 12-18 months ago and they sounded too good to be true. In a way, they were, because you couldn’t buy them anywhere. The wait is finally over–they’re finally available, though only at Home Depot. I tried out their 800-lumen (60W equivalent), 2700K, 9.5W bulb, which currently costs about $13. It’s a good bulb that lives up to the hype.
A longtime friend posted something on Facebook about CFL bulbs–namely, that in addition to containing mercury, that they also emit ultraviolet light. I thought everyone knew that fluorescent lights emit more UV than other types of lights and that wasn’t news, but maybe not.
I pointed out that LED bulbs don’t emit any UV light at all, and the proof is that bugs aren’t attracted to LED lights. They’ll come to an incandescent or a fluorescent light though.
He asked if LED lights pose any hazards if they break. I now have an answer. Read more
Timothy Hunt asked me (via Twitter) if I’ve seen the lightbulb reinvented, an LED bulb that screws into a standard socket but has wi-fi capability so you can tune its light temperature and otherwise control it with a smartphone.
I hadn’t. But I found it interesting, and appreciate the mention. Read more
Micro Center had the Inland warm white A19 LED bulbs on sale this week and had a hard time keeping them in stock. I snagged an 800 lumen (60W equivalent), non-dimmable bulb, which uses 10 watts, for $13. It’s not the state of the art in 10W LED bulbs, but the price is right and it has a 3-year warranty. Read more
PC Magazine asks when it’s worth upgrading to the new Philips L Prize-winning LED bulb, lamenting its high price and long payback time. I can only say what I plan to do, based on my experience with high-efficiency bulbs. I was one of those guys paying $9 for CFL bulbs nearly a decade ago. Read more
I bought a First Alert PIR725 motion sensing socket, which has the distinction of working with CFLs, as well as incandescent bulbs. The premise is simple. Screw it into a bulb socket, screw the bulb into the socket, and it turns the light on when it sees you, then after it senses there’s no one in the room, it waits four minutes and turns the light off.