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Q1: What is LED lighting?
LED lighting has been around for many years and is now really coming into its own. For years, the Light Emitting Diode (LED) was simply used as an indicator or display light in various small-scale applications. Think of those old instruments, calculators, or the panel on your VCR. LED is a solid-state technology. This means there are no glass bulbs, pressurised gases, mercury or burning filaments. In the traditional bulb, heat was the main result while light stood as a mere by-product of electrifying the filament. With LED technology, what you have is a circuit board and a computer chip. The properties of the chip create light that is generated and focused through a plastic diode to create light. Depending on the chip and materials used, different colours in the colour spectrum can be created. Early on the easiest colour to create was red, which is why your calculator and VCR had red display lights rather than any other colour. For many years, there were no advancements in LED technology and very little change in lighting technology over all; changes that did occur were mostly just plays on a theme. Metal halide, fluorescent, etc. were all just different ways to do the same thing with different effects. In recent years, LED technology has completely changed and reinvented the light bulb and the way we think about lighting in general. This was not really possible prior to the technological revolution of the 1990s and the rapid advancement of the microchip. The same advancements that spurred the computer to reach dizzying levels of efficiency have also done the same for the LED. Just as computers have become faster and cheaper, LED lights have become brighter, smaller, less expensive, and more sophisticated.
Q2: Are E26 and E27 light bulb bases interchangeable?
Yes. The E26 is the standard 120 Volt American base. The E27 is the European variant and is rated at 220 Volts. E26 is 26mm in diameter and the E27 is 27mm in diameter. The sockets / bulbs are interchangeable except for the voltage rating. Therefore, LED E26 bulbs that are universal line-voltage can be used in both E26 and E27 sockets.
Q3: What are the advantages of using LEDs over traditional incandescent lighting?
There are quite a few advantages to using LEDs. Generally they are heatless, use 90% less energy, and last up to ten years. They are also smaller and do not contain any dangerous chemicals like mercury. LEDs can readily be put in places that have always been too small or out-of-the-way for many incandescent lights, as well as in places that were always very dangerous or difficult to get at. Also, the more sophisticated LED apparatuses like wall washers and spotlights are DMX-controllable, which means they can be used in some really impressive ways. The bottom line is that LEDs are easier and safer to use than all previous lighting technologies. LEDs will also save you money by consuming less power, lasting much longer, and generating much less heat, which in turn combine to result in lower climate control costs.
Q4: What types of LED lighting products are readily available?
Today there are hundreds of different products available in varying brightness levels, coolor temperatures, and sophistication levels to meet every lighting need - from those of an architect's latest high-rise project, to those of a homeowner's kitchen renovation. There are replacement bulbs for screw-in Edison-style bulbs and for nearly every style of Fluorescent. Plus, the LED replacements are of the "plug and play" like with no other modifications needed. There are also many different types of architectural lighting, such as wall washers and spotlights. Finally, our most popular piece of LED lighting is the light bar, which can be used anywhere. From display cases to under-cabinet lighting, our light bars offer a novel (and cost-effective!) approach to accent lighting.
Q5: How do I compare my current lighting with LED lighting so I can make intelligent decisions?
In the past, we have generally referred to the brightness of a bulb in terms of its wattage, or the amount of power that the bulb uses (or energy it consumes). Because of the disparity between incandescent and LED technologies, we have to change our language a bit in order to account for progress. When referring to brightness, we now find ourselves comparing lumens (see Q9: What is a lumen?). However, when comparing LEDs with incandescent, there is no easy mode of comparison because the typical incandescent is projecting light in 360 degrees - everywhere, not just where you need it. Because LED lights are directional, they focus all the light they generate exactly where you want it, and not where you do not. Another consideration is colour temperature. In the past, this has been very difficult to control because you basically got whatever colour your particular bulb produced. Typically this was a Warm White (about 3000K) if you had an incandescent bulb, and a Cool White (around 5000K) if you had a fluorescent bulb. Because the LED is an intelligent, solid-state technology, we are able to produce LEDs that not only produce Warm White and Cool White, but are able to produce up to 16 million different colours, each a different temperature.
Q6: Who is using LED lighting?
EVERYONE! Architects and lighting designers are specifying entire lighting packages in their new designs. Contractors are using them in everything from custom kitchens to retail stores. Many homeowners are replacing their incandescent with LED bulbs. LED lighting can replace every instance of old lighting technology, as well create entirely new lighting applications due to its versatility. Your imagination is its only limitation.
Q7: With all the buzz around compact fluorescent bulbs, should I skip this step towards efficient lighting altogether and move directly to a LED bulb?
Compact fluorescents are great bulbs, but they lack all the advantages of LEDs namely size and environmental friendliness because they contain mercury and do not last as long.
Q8: Will the LED fluorescent tube fit in my existing holder?
Yes! The only tube on the market that can do this. Two options simply remove the starter from the existing holder and install the fluro tube or isolate the ballast and have 240v direct. It's that simple. Our LED tube is C-ticked approved N21484 diffused lens output lumens 2950
Q9: What is lumen?
Lumen is amount of light emitted from light source.
If a light source emits one candela of luminous intensity into a solid angle of one steradian, the total luminous flux emitted into that solid angle is one lumen. Alternatively, an isotropic one-candela light source emits a total luminous flux of exactly 4 lumens. The lumen can be thought of casually as a measure of the total amount of visible light emitted. For example, a standard 100 Watt incandescent bulb emits about 1500 lumen.
Q10: What is Lux?
Lux is lumen per square meter.
The difference between the lux and the lumen is that the lux takes into account the area over which the luminous flux is spread. 1000 lumens, concentrated into an area of one square meter, lights up that square meter with an luminance of 1000 lux. The same 1000 lumens, spread out over ten square meters, produces a dimmer luminance of only 100 lux.