A Simple Guide To Buying And Installing LED Home Lighting

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What You Should Know To Benefit From New Ultra Low Energy Domestic LED Lighting.

Whether you are simply curious about the new LED home lighting solutions starting to appear in mainstream DIY and hardware supply stores, or already know a bit about LED technology and are keen to do your bit to help in the coming struggle against climate change (global warming) or just want to take steps to slash your fuel bills, the fact is that LED lighting is the future.

So you’re going to have to come to grips with this and learn what the future of domestic lighting means to you personally.

This article aims to clear up some of the confusion that surrounds the various low energy domestic lighting solutions currently available to consumers, looks at what you need to know about low energy lighting and installing low energy light bulbs and provides a simple guide and helpful LED lighting advice for anyone unfamiliar with evaluating and buying LED home lighting.

If you just want to jump in and start installing LED lights though then follow these links to check out some of the best LED spot lights and standard globe shaped LED light bulbsavailable these days.

Some Background About Domestic Lighting Solutions

The lighting systems we are most familiar with in a domestic setting are based on GLS (General Lighting Service ) light bulbs – these are incandescent filaments that burn (quite literally) and in so doing convert their input energy into about 98% heat (as you would expect for something that is burning) with the remainder given off as incidental light.

GLS bulbs have a typical lifespan of about 1000 hours, at which point, having converted your these-days-not-very-cheap electricity into vastly more heat than light, they need to be replaced. Put another way, if you started out in life with a single GLS light bulb that you used for just 4 hours per evening, you would need to re-purchase well over 100 replacements during the course of your life.

At approximately $1 per light bulb say, that’s $100. And if you think that’s a high price to pay for having a little light in your life, the cost of running your GLS bulb far exceeds the replacement costs at somewhere above $1000 in electricity bills.

And that’s just ONE measly little light bulb for a few small hours each evening. Now you know why your electricity bill is so much bigger that you would like it to be. There’s more here about calculating lighting costs if you’re interested. in the meantime…

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  • Jason

    Can 1-10v analogue dimming drivers be used with mains voltage rated LED GU10 lamps?

    I’m refurbishing my home and the the wall dimmer is rated 1-10v analogue dimming only. As I don’t want to use downlights that would require me to replace the whole thing if it blows, I want to use normal GU10 fittings and place something like Philips MasterLED GU10 lamps in them.

    Right now I’m confused because apparently analogue dimming drivers have a third control wire needed, but on a GU10 lamp there are only 2 contacts for the live and neutral?

    • I see that you specifically mean the type of dimmer that uses a DC control signal and which is thus suitable for dimmable LED drivers since these invariably expect a 0-10V control (either via a manually controlled “switch” or an automated system so that lights fade up/down in response to light levels/PIR sensor etc).

      The point about GU10 LEDs though is that they already incorporate driver circuitry in the base of the lamp and are thus incompatible with low voltage/DC power supplies and by implication your existing dimmer switch. If you want to fit LED GU10 lamps then replace the dimmer switch with a suitable mains resistive dimmer