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How To Choose A LED Light Bulb For Your Light Fixtures

Every light fixture benefits from a well-chosen light bulb; and improvements over the past few years have made LED light bulbs a very good choice, indeed. LED bulbs offer both practical and aesthetic advantages over incandescent and fluorescent lights. They are energy efficient, long-lived, and give clear, consistent light. Today's A19 type LED bulbs are omnidirectional. That means that you no longer have to live with a dark spot above the plane of the LED itself. Special engineering has made these bulbs just as bright and effective as a traditional light bulb. 


LED light bulbs use a fraction of the energy of other lights, half that of Compact Fluorescent (CFL) and less than one-fourth that of incandescent bulbs. They have a long life span, several times the life of a CFL, and ten times, or more the life of an incandescent. Together, these more than compensate for the initial higher cost of LED light bulbs, and add up to long term savings. In addition, LED light bulbs do not contain the toxic materials which require special disposal of CFL’s; and they turn on immediately, with no warm-up time. They also generate less heat than an incandescent. The transformer in the base does get hot as it transforms 120V to 12V power, though not nearly as hot as the blistering glass of an incandescent. When handling a hot LED bulb, grasp it by the plastic lens, this will be merely warm.). 


LED light bulbs come in both standard A19 medium base and candelabra base. Most also come in either warm white (similar to the warm, comfortable tone of an incandescent light), or daylight white (similar to a cool white fluorescent). Choose between warm white and daylight thoughtfully. Colored glass light fixtures can look very different depending on which is used. Warm white emphasizes reds and yellows, daylight, greens and blues. Even plain white glass fixtures look noticeably different with a warm white or daylight. white LED bulb installed. 

As with any light bulb, check the size of an LED bulb to be sure it fits properly in your fixture. LED light bulbs vary in length from less than 3 ½ inches to well over five inches; and, in general, the brighter bulbs are also the longer. High output LED bulbs (equivalent to 75W and 100W incandescent bulbs) are quite long to accommodate large, finned heat sinks. Even if the LED bulbs screws easily into the fixture, it may be so long that the end pokes out from the fixture, both unsightly and overly bright. Note that the vanity light on the right is designed to use either a G 16 1/2 small globe shaped bulb or an A15 bulb. We put the longer lamp in here just to illustrate the point.