You may have noticed that the energy efficiency label on the packaging of LED lamps has changed, and some LED lamps now have a rating of E; do not be alarmed, they are still energy efficient! The reason the energy labels look different is that the rating system has changed in Europe and in the UK, and this blog post tells you everything about the new energy efficiency labels for LED lamps. Some customers were quite intrigued to purchase a 5W or 6W LED lamp and find out that the energy efficiency label says it is E or D. We had quite a few calls and emails from customers concerning this, so we thought we should explain to the best of our ability what all this means. How come an A+++ energy-rated LED lamp is now a D energy-rated lamp? Read below to find out more concerningThe new rules for energy labels for lighting products.The old energy label vs the new energy labelThe new energy efficiency requirementsThe contents of the Light Products New Energy LabelHow to Read the Packaging for a LED LampNew Energy Efficiency Label - FAQConclusion and Further ReferencesWhat are the New Rules for Energy Labels for LightingThe reason there are no more A++, A+, etc is that there are some alterations to the rules for energy efficiency labels. These were triggered by the new EU 2019/2020 Single Lighting Regulation (SLR, laying down ecodesign requirements for light sources and separate control gear) and the new EU 2019/2015 Energy Label Regulation (ELR, laying down energy labelling requirements of light sources). The SLR replaces and repeals three regulations: (EC) No 244/2009, (EC) No 245/2009 and (EU) No 1194/2012, giving a single point of reference for compliance, and it defines in new terms the light sources covered under the regulation and separate control gear. By light sources, we mean anything that emits light such as LED lamps, LED modules, LED luminaires, etc. These new and more stringent minimum efficacy thresholds on light sources and separate control gear push the lighting industry forward to innovate and improve energy efficiency beyond existing technology. Furthermore, they encourage design for a circular economy, reducing refuse and increasing reuse. Products now need to be designed to be more reliable, even upgradable, and the "right to repair" is now enabled; furthermore, they need to contain more recyclable material and be easier to dismantle. All these are good both for consumers and for the earth, for less waste will end up in a landfill. The ELR replaces and repeals two regulations: (EC) No 874/2012 and (EC) No 2017/1369. It defines the new energy labelling requires for packaging, sales literature, websites, and distance selling. All products requiring energy labels will need to be registered into the EPRLEL database, and a QR code that links to the technical product info is mandatory. In the UK, these rules were incorporated into the UK law under The Ecodesign for Energy-Related Products and Energy Information (Lighting Products) Regulations 2021 2021 No. 1095. According to Integral LED, one of our lighting suppliers, "These are new European Commission regulations which were ratified and published in December 2019. Since the UK has left the European Union, it decided to replicate the technical requirements and combine them into one UK regulation known as a Statutory Instrument. In practical terms, this means the new lighting regulations will apply to EU member states and the UK in a near identical fashion – only specific regulatory markings are likely to vary, for example, CE/UKCA and EU/GB flags on point of sale energy labels."The Old Energy Label and the New Energy Label: what's the DifferenceIt is not just the label that changed but the energy rating has also changed. The old ratings lost clarity as the efficiency essential to the previous regulation had maxed out. There were products rated A, A+, or A++, while the E and F ratings had become redundant. There was a need for better energy ratings to make things more clear and improve the understanding of the energy rating classifications. Here is what the old EU Energy Label used to look like, with a rainbow colour scale going from Green to Red, and a lettering scale from A+++ to E. Here is what the new EU and UK energy labels look like; the revised scale is still green to red in colour, but the lettering scale is from A to G, with more energy efficiency needed to achieve these levels. Just as a quick reference, many lighting products that were rated A++ in the old energy label will now be rated C or D in the new energy label. See here some of the newest LED lamps with the best energy label rating. The New Energy Efficiency RequirementsJust as a comparison, what used to be 120lm/W in the A++ class before 2021, now it is class E in the new energy efficiency requirements.The reason lighting products have lower ratings now on their new label is not that they are less efficient; rather, they consume the same amount of power as they always have, but now their energy efficiency has been lowered. The old energy ratings A+, A++, and A+++ no longer exist; the new scale is from A to G, and B and C ratings are the best in class, the most energy-efficient lights. Unfortunately, there's no way to compare the old label with the new one due to the new energy efficiency requirements. Full explanations and details regarding the Energy Label can be found via this website, and there's a PDF that can help you understand more concerning the label. The focus has shifted from Watt to Lumen; yes, wattage is important, but more light output is appreciated. For example, a 20W halogen spot is equivalent to 190lm LED 12V and 110lm LED 230V, while a 15W incandescent bulb is equivalent to 140lm LED and 130lm energy-saving bulbs. The contents of the Light Products New Energy LabelAccording to the new rules, the new energy labels need to contain certain items, such asThe supplier's name and model number. This refers to the manufacturer's name and the model number of the LED lamp. Energy Rating: the new energy rating on a scale from A to G. Power Consumption: the number of kWh/1000h consumed by the LED lamp; it is rounded up to the next single watt. QR code: QR code to access the detailed product information sheet registered in the European Commission's EPREL database.A wide range of Integral LED lamps can be found on our website, and there are many LED lamps with high efficiency available via LED Light bulbs.How to Read the Packaging for a LED LampOn light products' packaging, you can now find a lot of useful information by reading its label. The new rules are being applied from the 1st of October 2021, and the lighting manufacturers need to indicate either by icons or text concerning the following features:Energy label: The light sources energy consumption in kWh per 1000hWattage: the on-mode power for the light source in WLuminous Flux (lm): indicating how much light the light source emits. A high Lumen value means a more distinguished light. Kelvin (K): is a colour temperature scale used to indicate how warm or cold the light output is perceived. Outdoor use: it indicates whether the light source can be used outdoor - this has to be on the packaging. Beam angle: the angle of the light output in degrees or the range of light output angle.Dimming: the dimming icon indicates whether the light source is dimmable or not. Lifetime: it indicates the light source's lifetime in hours from the start of use until the light output has degraded to less than 70% of the original output. Ra-value (Colour rendering index, CRI): the Ra-value indicates the light source's ability to reproduce a lifelike colour; daylight, for example, has a Ra-value of 100. Here is a list of LED lamps with CRI 80.QR Code: Further product information will be available to consumers via the new QR Code included in the labels. The product manufacturer is responsible for ensuring the QR code links to a relevant information source, this could be for example the new EU product database or their own website. New Energy Efficiency Label - FAQQ: Why are there two different energy labels with my product?A: Over the last 20 years, the energy efficiency of products has improved. This means the information on the energy label needs to change to ensure it can continue to help you find the best products. As the new information is phased in, there will be a short time when products may feature both the old and new labels.Q: Why do the two labels show different information for the same product?A: The new label will show different energy ratings for your product. This may seem strange but the new label has been updated to take into account how you use your products at home, as well as provide more detailed information on other features of the product. This will give you a more accurate and realistic idea of how your product will perform over its life.Conclusion and Further ReferencesThe matter of the energy labels for the light bulbs/LED lamps is a complicated and vast one, and in this guide, we do a quick overview of this issue. There is nothing to worry about if you purchase a LED lamp that has an energy rating of E or D according to the new label; you simply need to check the lumens output and make sure it is low wattage, and it will save you £££ of your bills. Read more on this topic via the following links:Guide to energy performance certificates (via Energy Saving Trust).New Lighting Regulations 2021: what you need to know (via Integral LED)Energy ratings: everything you need to know (via Energy Saving Trust).The New Energy Label for Light Sources (via Label 2020 Europe). The New EU Energy Label Explained (via gov.uk). About the changes to energy rating labels this year (via ML Accessories).
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We used to rely on trusty halogen lamps or classical incandescent lamps, but their time is over; we now need to choose the light colour temperature that we need for our LED lamps. The GU10 halogen lamps and the E27 or E14 incandescent bulbs used to be quite simple to use and replace, and their price has gone down after a while. But we are now in a new age, the age of energy saving, the age in which we use LED lamps to save not just on the electricity bill but also save the planet. However, the LED lamps do not all offer the same light colour: they now can be programmed or set to offer a particular kind of colour in a chart of light colour temperature. What are the Light Colour Temperatures for LED Lamps?If you want to change your old halogen or incandescent lamp and wanted to get a like-for-like replacement, you may be surprised to find out that such lamps are no longer for sale. What you will discover, however, is that there are energy-saving alternatives to these high-energy-consumption bulbs. There is a LED lamp that can replace the GU10 halogen lamp, and there's an E14 (small Edison Screw) and E27 (large Edison Screw) LED lamp to replace the incandescent lamps. But this time you need to choose both the light colour temperature and the wattage. Here are the most popular light colour temperatures for LED lamps:Warm white light: from 2000K to 3000KNeutral white light: from 4000K to 4500KDaylight white: 6000K - 6500KThe Correlated Colour Temperature (CCT) is measured in degrees Kelvin - from 1000K to 10.000K. The lower the Kelvin temperature is, the warmer the light is, and the higher number of Kelvins, the brighter/whiter it is. For example, the candle lamp from 10 years ago offered a colour temperature of approx. 2000K, a halogen lamp would offer either 3000K (when it was yellowish) or 4000K (when it was blueish), and the sunlight offers approx. 6000K light. The higher the colour temperature of a LED lamp, the whiter the light appears. Note: Philips calls warm white around 2700K, neutral white around 4000K, and cool white at 5000K or more. Also, via Wikipedia, we see an enriched version of the categorization of the different lighting colour temperatures. The question is, what is the light colour temperature you need for your lamp?LED Lamps Colour Temperatures and Where to Use ThemIt can be confusing where to use a cool white lamp and where to use daylight or a warm white lamp. This didn't use to be a problem, but now the home user and office worker alike are put in front of the dilemma of choosing the light colour temperature for the setting he's in.There's a variety of colour temperatures, and as the households and offices are switched to LED, the colour temperature has to be just right. We need to identify the correlated colour temperature (also called, CCT) of the existing light bulbs and find the LED alternative, the perfect replacement. Based on the room where you need to change the lamp, there are recommended correlated light colour temperatures for the LED lamps. Remember, the colour temperature of the lamps you use has an important impact on the way we feel and the functionality of the space we use and the activities we perform there. Where should we use Warm White LED Lamps?Warm white light refers to CCT of 2000K - 3000K, and it is more relaxing, calming, and inviting. It is recommended to use warm white LED lamps in locations such as the bedroom, the bathroomthe dining roomthe living room decorative lightinghospitality ambient lightingWherever we need to create a warm, inviting glow, we should use a warm white LED lamp. In the bedroom, for example, we should always use warm white light, because the cool white light can disrupt our circadian rhythm and can negatively affect the quality of our sleep. In the bathroom, similarly, when we use a warm white light, warmer tones are more flattering and relaxing. When it comes to the dining room lighting, it is recommended not only to use warm white lights but also dimmable lamps, so that you can adjust the lighting as appropriate. Similarly, in hospitality lighting and decorative lighting, warmer light colours are recommended. Light fittings that use warm white light are table lamps, floor lamps, pendants, chandeliers, and downlights. Cool White LED Lamps: where to use them and why?The cool white LED lamps, or the cool white colour temperature is recommended in settings where we need to stay alert and focused. At the office, for example, it is recommended to use cooler temperatures, since we need to focus on work and concentrate on the tasks at hand. Similarly, in the kitchen, we can use cool white light to help us stay awake while making breakfast or dinner. Sometimes even in the bathroom, you can use a cool white light to keep you alert in the morning. Some of the locations where cool white LED lamps are recommended are office/work environments, accent lightingbathroom lightingbasement lightingtask lighting garage lightingPlease bear in mind, however, that the correlated colour temperature you need depends on the task or activity to be performed, so if you need to stay more alert in the bathroom, then cool white light can be used, but if you just want a relaxing atmosphere in the bathroom, the warm white light is recommended. Here is an example of a cool white LED lamp and a cool white LED fitting.Daylight LED Light Bulbs and where to Use themThe daylight colour in LED lamps is >5000K, basically 6000K and 6500K. Such lamps emit colour similar to the sunlight, a colour that is not just yellowish (warm white) or blueish (cool white) but whiteish (daylight). Locations, where daylight colour temperature can be used, are security lightinggarages lighting display areas - display lightingtask lighting. The LED flood lights used as security lighting outdoor can offer daylight CCT, shining a bright sun-like light to light the path or expose the intruders. Similarly, if you want to highlight a display or shed light in the garage, you can use daylight LED lamps. Such light is crisp and invigorating, and many task light fittings and security lights use it. They are the preferred light colour temperature in industrial and commercial settings and applications. ConclusionOne of the most common questions we have been asked at Sparks for the past few years, as we make the transition from halogen and incandescent lamps to LED lamps, is what colour temperature the LED lamps should be. As LED technology is developing, there are more and more options for the increasing number of settings, scenes, activities, and tasks. To find out more about what kind of colour temperature you need for your LED lamps, you can give us a call or contact us via email. Note: we now have CCT lamps where you can choose the LED colour temperature before installing it, and if you change your mind later, you can change it again. See these CCT lights here.
On the 1st of September 2018 the EU ban on halogen bulbs has come into full effect; after more than half a century of brightening our homes and streets with halogen lightbulbs, these are finally banned across Europe. The remaining stocks can still be sold, and the capsule lamps, linear lamps, and low voltage incandescent lamps in the oven lights are exempt from this ban, but a continent-wide ban came into effect for halogen. The halogen lamps are to be replaced with LED lamps, mainly to slash emissions and cut down the energy bill, and to prevent the carbon emissions. It is estimated that a consumer would save up to £112 per year when you switch from halogen to LEDs, though there's an initial investment - with many long-term benefits and savings. We all understand the main reason for switching to LED lamps, but there are still some questions that need an answer, such as, Why are Halogen Lamps Banned? According to the European Union directive EC 244/2009, there has been a progressive banning of the less efficient light sources (such as the high wattage incandescent lamps and energy-consuming halogen lamps) with the aim of improving the energy efficiency and cutting the carbon emissions across all countries in the EU. First, the traditional incandescent light bulbs were banned in 2009, and now it is the halogen lamps turn (see our interview with BBC on this topic). The main reason for banning the halogen lamps is because they use much more energy than the LED lamps or the compact fluorescent alternatives, plus, they have a shorter lifespan (2000h, which is approx. 2 years of use when used 3h per day). The ban affects the classic style halogen lamps made of glass, those operated without a transformer, which emit light in all directions, using lamp caps such as E27 (Edison Screws), B22 (bayonet lamps BC), E14 (small Edison screw SES), and B15 (SBC) types. Do I need to Change my Halogen Lamps to LEDs? The EU directive doesn't force any individual user to immediately switch from incandescent lamps or halogen lamps to LED lamps; however, it is recommended to reduce the energy consumption not only for saving money on electricity bills, but also to reduce the carbon emissions. How does the halogen lamps ban affect the regular homeowner? Halogen lamps will still be available for purchase, because retailer such as Sparks Electrical are still permitted to sell through any existing stock; however, these are phased out, and it will be increasingly difficult to source. Of course, some specialist light bulbs where a LED alternative is not available yet (such as G9, G4, and R7s - used in ovens or cooker hoods) will still be available, but as their energy-saving replacements become available, these also will be phased out. What about Brexit and the Halogen Lamps Ban in UK? That is a good question: does Brexit affect the halogen bulb ban? The answer is, Not really, since the UK still follows the EU legislation, and light bulbs manufacturers are decided not to make both high wattage light bulbs and LED lamps to meet the need of both markets. Is switching to LEDs a Cost-effective Solution? Many people are not even considering to switch from their existing incandescent or halogen lamps to LED lamps simply because their light bulbs work just fine - so why fix something that's not broken. Also, as we all know, LED lamps are a bit more expensive than the halogen lamps, at least initially; the prices have decreased year by year as the technology advances and the manufacturing costs are lower, but still, a LED light bulb is a bit more expensive than a halogen lamp. However, a halogen lamp may need to be changed after 2-3 years of use, while a LED lamp may last between 10-20 years (based on 3h or use per day). You as a consumer do not have an obligation to replace your existing halogen bulbs now, before they expire; however, if you want to save money on your electricity bills and extend the lamp life, and if you want to reduce the carbon footprint, then the replacing of halogen lamps is a must. It's worth considering switching to more energy-saving LED bulbs as the nights are getting longer and lights will be on more. Are All LED Lamps the Same? Can they All be Trusted? Switch from Halogen to LED lamps (picture via Integral LED) The LED lighting market is flooded with all kinds of LED lamps, and many times we hear stories of people buying LED lamps which fail either to dim or to work properly. There are fire risks associated with counterfeit or faulty LED lights which are often sold on well-known e-commerce website (as indicated by ECA here), so consumers are advised to only buy electrical goods from reputable retailers. We at Sparks carefully source the LED lamps we sell, and if there are any faulty ones, we replace it like-for-like. However, when it comes to LED lamps we all need to pay a little more attention to such details as the lamp cap used (GU10, E27/ES, SES, BC, etc), the wattage you desire (for example, a 6W LED lamp can be equivalent to a 60W halogen lamp), the colour temperature desired (warm white, cool white, daylight, etc), and whether the LED lamp needs to be dimmed. When it comes to dimmable LED lamps, there may be only some LED dimmers that are recommended with the dimmable LED lamps, so you may have to also change your wall dimmer. It is best to check with a registered electrician on this matter of dimming, since they may need to change your dimmer switch also. If you have any other questions regarding the EU ban on Halogen Lamps, please leave us a comment or read the further articles linked to below. We at Sparks still stock halogen lamps (as stock lasts) and we warmly recommend the alternative LED lamps which are more energy-efficient and longer lasting. Let's save the planet together. Let's reduce the carbon footprint, and let's reduce the energy consumption in our homes, workplace, and public places! More info on EU ban on Halogen Lamps Articles on this topic which inspired us and highlighted some of the main points on the EU ban on Halogen Lamps and their replacement with LEDs: EU product ban on halogen bulbs came into force on 1 September - Households to save Billions Following Halogen Lamp Ban (via Professional Electrician). All you need to know about the Halogen Lamps Ban in the EU - via the Evening Standard. Europe is banning the Halogen Lightbulbs - via the Guardian. EU bans production of 60W incandescent lamps - in 2011, on Sparks blog. EU's ban on Halogen Light Bulbs takes Effect on 1 September 2018 - via EuroNews. Everything you need to know on EU Halogen Light Bulb Ban, via Which. Via Fortune Environment, EU Ban on Halogen Light Bulbs Takes Effect this September. Here's what you need to know about Halogen Light Bulbs being banned in the EU - via inews. The EU's bright spars han the halogen bulbs, via Express.
We get asked hundreds of questions concerning how to do more energy saving lighting, from, "Do I need to replace all my downlights with LED lights" to "do you have low voltage LED lights" and "is this LED lamp dimmable". Our consultants over the counter and on the phone at Sparks and Lights are ready to advise all those who want to save energy, so why not pop into our lighting showroom in Archway, North London, N19 5SE! Oh, by the way, they are doing some nice road repairs at the Archway gyratory, so it will be quite awesome when all these construction works will be finished in a month or two... One of the question people ask us is, How can I keep my existing low voltage downlights and use LED lamps? Many times the low voltage LED lamps are either more expensive or they may not work with the existing installation. Furthermore, nobody wants to "rip out all the 12V downlights" in the kitchen and in the bathroom, just so that he would install GU10 downlights that work with LED lamps. So at Sparks we have a simple solution to this situation: GU10LH + 141724 The GU10LH Lampholder is a simple mains voltage lampholder with tails that can be installed in the low voltage downlight to convert it to mains voltage GU10 recessed lamp. Of course, the 12V driver must be removed (and the MR16 lampholder too, if possible). Adding and installing this GU10 lampholder by a registered electrician (please, don't DIY this one!) will allow you to convert a low voltage downlight into a GU10 downlight. Megaman LED Lamps - retrofit dimmable GU10 lamp offering a warm white or cool white light, the ideal LED lamp for your ceiling light. This LED light bulb is dimmable with a leading edge or a trailing edge dimmer; in other words, you can dim this LED lamp even without having to install a LED dimmer. So you don't need to dig out and replace your existing wall dimmer - you simply install this Megaman 5.5W GU10 LED lamp, and you're sorted out! This is only one of the many ways of keeping your existing LV downlights yet using them with LED lamps. It requires the help of a registered electrician, but the procedure is simple. Here's a simple checklist of the features and benefits of such a situation: Do you want to keep your existing ceiling downlights in the kitchen or the bathroom? Check. Do you want to use energy saving lamps - LED lamps - and thus save £££ on your bills? Check. Do you want to minimize the electrical work done to your ceiling while switching to energy saving? Check. Do you want to dim your LED lamps without paying extra money for LED dimmers? Check. Do you want to want to switch to LED lamps and not spend tons of money on it? Check. Do you want to make sure you don't book your electrician again and again, but you have a clear job for him? Check. What do you think? If you are an electrician or a home owner, or you have found a better way to keep the existing low voltage recessed lights and yet use LED lamps, let us know in the comments.
The advancement in today's LED technology allows people to choose not only to use a LED lamp instead of an incandescent or halogen one, but even to choose the light output (the lumens), the light colour temperature (daylight, warm white, neutral white, and cool white), and the size and shape. It is safe to say that soon the LED lamps will be available at a lower cost than ever, and they will replace the high consumption lamps with more energy saving light bulbs. What's even more interesting is that many of the existing LED lamps are also dimmable, allowing people to dim the LED lamp sometimes all the way to 0%! However, there are a few problems with the LED dimming - at this point in time. Problems with LED Dimming The LED lights offer a bright light in the light color you desire, so many times you may want to dim them. There are a few questions that rise up here: Are all the LED lights dimmable? Can we dim a LED light with any dimmer? How low can you dim an LED lamp, and how long can you keep it dimmed? If you dim the LED lamp, is the energy consumption also reduced? Is the LED lamp life decreased drastically if you dim it? First of all, at this moment in time NOT ALL the LED lights are dimmable; those who are dimmable are clearly marked "dimmable". If an LED light bulb is not dimmable, it may not be marked so - but unless it is marked dimmable, don't assume that the LED lamp is dimmable. Secondly, the dimmable LED lamps cannot be dimmed from ANY dimmer. Simply changing a dimmable halogen lamp with a dimmable LED lamp doesn't guarantee that the existing regular dimmer will work with the LED lamp. Most LED manufacturers have a list of recommended LED dimmers / LED dimmer modules that would work with a particular dimmable LED lamp, and it is best to make sure you use one of those dimmers, otherwise dimming may not work and the lamp/installation may be damaged. Thirdly, the whole point of dimming is not only to decrease the level of light but also to save energy and consequently, money. So yes, dimming the LED lamp will save you even more energy and money. Lastly, if the LED lamp is dimmable, dimming the LED lamp should NOT have an impact on the lifetime of the lamp. All these considered, there are now more questions with most of our customers such as, So then how can I make sure I have the right LED dimmer for my LED lamps? Is there such a thing as a "universal LED dimmer" that works with most LED Lamps? And what do I do with my existing dimmers - do I need to buy the expensive ones and throw them away? In other words, Is it that Simple to Transform a Regular Dimmer into an LED Dimmer? Six months ago we would have recommended replacing the entire dimmer with a brand new LED dimmer - which costs a lot of money, may not be in the plate and finish you desire, and may not work with all your LED lamps. But now there's such a thing as a "universal LED dimmer" made by Varilight - see the JP250P V-Pro 1 Gang 2 Way Trailing Edge 10W-250W LED Dimmer Module Replacement. It is a normal size as a regular dimming module, so it can easily replace the existing dimmer in the back of your dimmer switch. Of course, such a replacement should be done by a registered electrician - don't try to do any DIY with electricity and electrical devices such as these - so that it may be tested and work properly. Do you need a smooth and silent dimming for your LED lights? Are your LED lights dimmable? Do you want to keep your existing dimmer plate and not replace it with one from this list of LED dimmers? Then your best solution is this LED dimmer module from Varilight, which is currently in stock and very highly recommended. In conclusion, to answer the question in the title: yes, it is that simple to transform a regular wall dimmer into an LED dimmer - if the size of the dimmer module behind the dimmer plate allows it, you can simply replace it with the highly recommended Varilight JP250P trailing edge LED dimmer module. For more details on this, don't hesitate to contact us or leave us a comment below.
Many customers have asked us to advise them on what is the correct colour temperature for their LED lights; in this article, we present a quick guide to choosing the colour temperature of the LED lights.Keep reading to find a quick guide on:Warm White vs Cool White - what's the difference?Where should we use Warm White Lights?Where should we use Cool White Lights?Where should we use Daylight Lights?Conclusion: what colour temperature do we need? Before the LED lighting revolution, it used to be so simple: incandescent lights, halogen lamps, and fluorescent lamps; now, things are more complicated, for every LED lamp has a certain Wattage, Lumen output, and Colour Temperature. It used to be quite easy before, when the halogen lamp reached its end of life, you would simply change it to another halogen lamp. Similarly with the incandescent lamps and the low voltage lamps. Nowadays, however, you need to make sure you order the right brightness, the correct colour temperature, and the exact lamp beam so that all these match the existing lamps on the ceiling or the wall. There are many guides, comparisons and charts out there related to the colour temperature of LED lights, and with the recent advancement in LED technology, there are now CCT selectable lamps, which are available via Sparks here. But in this article, we would like to explain the difference between warm white, cool white, extra warm white, daylight, and other colour temperatures that are mentioned on the box of the LED lamp or the integrated LED light fitting. Quick Guide to the LED Lamps Colour TemperatureWarm White vs Cool White - what's the difference?What is the difference between warm white light and cool white light? The colour of light emitted by a lamp can be warm or cool, on a spectrum, depending on the need. The CCT, the Correlated Colour Temperature, in lighting, describes how the colour of the light appears from an LED Lamp or LED light fitting, and it is measured in Kelvins (K). There is a scale from 1000K (which is a very red light) to 10.000K (which is a very blue light). The higher you go on the Kelvin scale, the closer the light emitted resembles blue daylight. The higher the colour temperature, the "cooler" a lamp will look, that is, the more blue-ish the light emitted is. Here is a quick guide to the Kelvins, the Type of lamp used, the colour temperature, the appearance, and the place it is used. Kelvins (K) AppearanceHow it Looks/feelsLight TypeLocation1000Kcandlelight redyellow light1800Kvintage-look filament lamp,orange lightultra warm whitevintage lighting2000K-3000KOrange to yellow or gold white lightCalming light, Cosy, Inviting, and Intimate LightWarm WhiteBedroom, living room, dining room, decorative lights, garden lights3000K-4500Kbright white, blueish whitebright light, vibrant light, inviting, blueish white, crispCool Whitebathroom, home office, work environment, kitchen, commercial properties, outdoor lights4500K-6500Kvery bright whiteappears as daylight, illuminating, powerful bright lightdaylightfloodlight, security light, garage and workshop, hospital, schools6500K-7000Kcool daylight10000Kblue skyblue lightIn simple terms, the colour temperature of an LED lamp is based on how the colour of the heated metal changes as its temperature is increased, from red to yellow and then blue.The range of colours at different temperatures has become useful for describing the colour tint of white light. At Sparks we stock a variety of warm white LED Lamps, extra warm white LED lamps, cool white LED lamps, and daylight LED lamps. The difference between warm white and cool white is that the warm white light is more yellowish while the cool white light is more blueish. Where to use Warm White LED Lights? What about Cool White LED Lamps?Warm white and cool white are the most popular colours of lights; warm white can be either 2700K or 3000K, and cool white is 4000K. Daylight, for instance, is 6500K, and it mimics the daylight. The question is, where is it suitable for warm white light to be used, and what about the cool white light? Based on our experience with hundreds of customers and on the vast knowledge out there related to colour temperature in LED Lamps, here is our advice.Warm White Lights - All Around the HomeWarm white lights are recommended to be used at home, especially in the living room, dining room, and wherever at home you want to create a warm atmosphere, an inviting and relaxing light. The 3000K and 2700K warm white lights offer an orangey-yellow light, similar to what the older incandescent or halogen lamps used to offer. They are ideal for use in the bedroom for ceiling, wall, or table lighting, and you can also use them in the living room, the dining room, the conservatory, and even in the garden as summer lights for example. To create a warm atmosphere at home, warm white light bulbs are recommended for the table lamps, bedside lamps, and desk lights. You can say that there is soft white light between 2700K and 3000K, and the warm white is between 3000K and 4000K on the Kelvin scale. Check out the GU10 warm white lights, G9 warm white lights, E27/ES warm white LED lamps, and the E14/SES warm white LED lamps available at Sparks. Cool White Lights - In the Office and in Busy AreasWhere are the cool white lights suitable to be installed and used? They emit a brighter and more vibrant light, a more blueish light, and they appear closer to daylight. It is recommended to use cool white lamps in more lively areas, where you want to make sure people stay awake and do activities. For example, you can use a cool white LED lamp in the bathroom, in the kitchen, and in utility rooms at home. Also, they are recommended to be used in the office and other work environments. Also, you can use cool white lights in the garage or other places where you need brighter light for completing tasks. The cool white lights mimic the light colour temperature offered by the fluorescent tube lights. Wherever there used to be a fluorescent lamp, the cool white lights are recommended. They are perfect for commercial properties. You can say that cool white is between 4000K and 5000K on the Kelvin scale. See the cool white G9 lamps, E27/ES lamps, E14/SES lamps, and GU10 lamps at Sparks. Also, check out the cool white LED panels, ideal for office lighting, and the cool white LED battens.Daylight Lights - OutdoorsThe brightest and closest to the daylight are the daylight light fittings and daylight LED lamps, 6000K and 6500K. Where are the daylights most suitable to be used? It is recommended to use them where daylight is required. For example, you can use daylight lights and LED lamps outdoors in the yard, forecourt, floodlighting, security lighting, and sports venues. At home you can safely use daylight lighting to light up the driveway or as garden lights. You can accentuate or highlight features outdoors with daylight lighting, but indoors it is recommended to use cool white when you do the same. We can say that daylight is between 5000K and 6500K on the Kelvin scale. Such light shines bright and exposes every detail, hence it is the preferred light temperature for hospitals, large offices, and classrooms. At Sparks we distribute a wide range of daylight flood lights, daylight LED striplights, daylight security lights, and even daylight LED lamps and tubes. Conclusion: What colour Temperature do we need at Home or Office?In conclusion, you can say that it is up to the preference of the homeowner and the atmosphere you want to create in different venues and rooms around the house or at the office. If you want to create a more relaxed atmosphere, warm white lights are recommended. If you want to create an atmosphere for studying, working, and doing activities, cool white lights are the best. If you want to mimic the daylight in order to highlight or light up the driveway or the facade of the house, daylight is the most suitable. If you want to have a table lamp for reading a book or light up a living space, warm white lights are recommended, since they offer a more relaxing light. but if you want the people visiting or working in a room to be alert and have higher visibility, cool white is more recommended. This is valid for both indoor and outdoor lighting. For more information on the colour temperature you need, do not hesitate to contact us.Disclaimer: the images used for the different color temperatures have been taken from the world wide web - they were not created by us. If they are bound by copyright, we can take them down - simply let us know.
Maybe your lightbulbs burned out over the winter, or maybe you just made a New Year's resolution to upgrade to LED lighting - who knows? But if you're disposing of old and expired lightbulbs, there are a lot of complicated recycling guidelines. Some can be thrown out with the rest of the rubbish; others need to be collected. In this article, we hope to dispel some of that confusion. When a lightbulb is recycled, it gets sent to the reprocessor where it is crushed. 98% of the material (glass, plastic, and metal), can then be reused. It's the circle of life. Incandescent Lightbulbs Incandescent lightbulbs are non-recyclable and should be disposed of along with the rest of the household waste. These bulbs are made of a different type of glass than bottles - and the fine wires in the processing are very hard to filter out. Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) Fluorescent light fittings are Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Category 5, and must be collected separately for disposal or dropped off at collection points. The handy site Recolight provides a map of the nearest collection points to your postcode. If you have a house full of CFL lightbulbs and a trek from the nearest collection point, it's probably best to wait until you have a collection of expired bulbs - just make sure they don't smash! Fluorescent Tubes Fluorescent tube lights fall under the same regulations as CFLs above: drop them off at your nearest collection point. For larger projects like commercial refitting, you can request a lamp collection. Halogen Lamps Halogen lightbulbs cannot be recycled with regular glass and should be disposed of with regular household waste. Metal Halide BulbsAs with energy-saving lights, high-output metal halide lamps should be recycled in the same manner as CFL bulbs. Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) LED bulbs contain no harmful substances and individual LEDs can be disposed of in household waste. However, it is advisable to check the disposal guidelines for the housing and equipment in which they are housed, which often contain plastics. Photo by phozographer on Flickr (Creative Commons)