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Now in favour of LEDs

(27 Posts)
PigletJohn Sun 10-Jul-16 22:22:38

For a few years I have been opposed to LED lamps, on the grounds that they were overpriced and no more energy-efficient than CFLs (the older type of energy-saving lamp).

I am pleased to say that prices have at last dropped, and the next generation of lamps is now on the market with noticeably improved efficiency.

Last month Tesco were trying to sell ordinary Osram LED lamps for £10; they have now dropped to £5.

I have recently been buying Philips and own-brand lamps for about £3 at Wickes, and yesterday I collected an order of small spots from Wilkinsons at £2 each. They use about half the electricity of my old CFLs.

At the time of writing there seems to be a shortage of lamps of the same brightness as the old 100W incandescent lamp, which should have an output of about 1400 lumens, and in the new generation should use less than 20W of electricity. I expect they will be along soon. Being small and bright they are more inclined to cause glare, so consider lamps with a golfball or pear-shaped opal shroud to simulate the appearance of incandescent lamps.

BTW the manufacturers are at last prominently making light output, in lumens, on the packaging, so you know how bright they are. Although Philips are still using an outdated and incorrect method.


didireallysaythat Sun 10-Jul-16 22:40:10

Timely news - just starting a renovation. I'm hoping that buying the light fittings with LEDs in the first place will become more common place too.

wowfudge Sun 10-Jul-16 22:44:49

Thank you PJ. I had to buy some replacement bulbs a few weeks ago and found very few places have a decent selection of brighter bulbs. Good to hear LEDs have come down in price - we need seem GU10s!

wowfudge Sun 10-Jul-16 22:45:06

Some GU10s

PigletJohn Sun 10-Jul-16 22:57:52

found one

the advert says it is 1521 lumens (buried in the small print). I have no knowledge of the vendor and would feel more comfortable with a high-street supplier.

I wonder if they aren't being imported en masse yet? With a 16% drop in value of the pound, the official price list might be under revision.

wowfudge Mon 11-Jul-16 07:01:47

Thanks for that link - no issues with buying online, BIL has done it and said the really cheap ones are a false economy, UK sellers tend to have a better product. All our light fittings - apart from the GU10s and lamps - are bayonet fittings.

dementedpixie Mon 11-Jul-16 07:05:01

I got led gu10 bulbs from home bargains for about £3/£4 each and they have been going strong for over a year now with no blowouts (9 bulbs in total)

lovelyupnorth Mon 11-Jul-16 07:06:33

We have been running only led lights for about 3 years bought on line only paid around a fiver each and all put out between 50-60w for 4 or 5 watts of energy. Cracking bulbs more than halved my electricity bill even though in a couple of rooms we are running 3. For the first time ever my oh been happy as the rooms are more than bright enough and I'm happy as costing less. The high street has been very slow to catch up.

minipie Mon 11-Jul-16 11:13:08

While we're on the topic of LEDs - I read an article by a lighting designer who says you want 2700K for a warm colour (this is nothing to do with brightness, just colour of the light) and to check they are fully dimmable if you want to be able to dim.

PigletJohn Mon 11-Jul-16 14:06:13

a specialist told me that due to the less efficient control circuit, dimmables only produce about 70% of the light per watt that standard LEDs deliver.

PigletJohn Tue 09-Aug-16 07:50:51

Saw some at £1.99 each today (or 5 for £9.99, whoopee).

Only the commonest sizes, though, so far.

SwedishEdith Tue 09-Aug-16 15:39:16

Trial and error with these. Got some that could light Wembley (got rid) and the latest which, whilst being less glary, haven't lasted very long.

NorthWind Wed 10-Aug-16 13:18:33

LEDs very variable in quality. Some of the cheap ones do not last very long and returning them is a pain.

I have had good experiences with bulbs (and LED tape) from

They also seem to keep stock!

whatsthecomingoverthehill Wed 10-Aug-16 14:53:23

Anyone know if MR16s LEDs are any good yet? My house is riddled with them but because they run on 12V I've heard that there can be issues.

NorthWind Wed 10-Aug-16 15:21:57

In my view you are best off ditching the 12V ones and switching 240v. GU10s. However that involves stripping out the transformers and changing the fitments, so only worth doing if you doing a refurb.

I have a few left in my hallway and found these to be OK (I bought the warm white ones):

PigletJohn Wed 10-Aug-16 15:28:24

the "transformers" and any dimmers may be unsuitable. If you still know the make and model, you could ask the makers. The "transformers" are often poked up though one of the holes in the ceiling.

I think you are going to have to budget for changing the lighting system.

This would wipe out the savings on electricity, but long term, they will last longer and cost less.

Some people are not keen on dimmers and spots.

Maybe modernise one room at a time, when you are decorating?

PigletJohn Wed 10-Aug-16 15:28:54

....too slow!

Whatthefoxgoingon Wed 10-Aug-16 15:46:53

If I'm keen on dimmers, which ones shall we buy? The whole system needs changing to LEDs.

whatsthecomingoverthehill Wed 10-Aug-16 15:48:35

That's what I thought I'd have to do. Electrician lived here before, I think they had a thing for MR16s. It seems like there is a transformer for each bulb, does that make it easier or not?

NorthWind Wed 10-Aug-16 15:55:09

LEDs require "trailing edge" dimmers (not "leading edge". It is important to get this right.

And you cannot "mix and match" LEDs and non-LEDs on the same circuit, if that circuit has a dimmer in it. All have to be LEDs (with a trailing edge dimmer) or non-LEDs (with a leading edge dimmer).

If I doubt give your sparky or supplier a call.

I found Ultra to be super helpful. They will help you size one of these:

NorthWind Wed 10-Aug-16 15:56:40

Sorry that posted too soon.

I and everyone I know rips MR16s out ... they are a nightmare outdated technology. But it is a big job so only worth doing if you are prepared to redo your ceiling .... Until then just replace the bulbs.

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 10-Aug-16 19:47:39

I bought them three years ago, led hut, all about a fiver each. I had one failure and they replaced it foc.

Our electric bill for this house is £16 a month, everything is electric bar the heating.

I've recommended them to other people and there bill has dropped right down too. It shouldn't make such as massive difference but it does.

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 10-Aug-16 19:48:38

I even have one in the fridge. And pound shop candle shape ones in the cooker hood.

PigletJohn Sun 25-Sep-16 22:02:45

Good grief!

Five for £10!

kitchenlights Sun 25-Sep-16 22:15:33

We have loads of rm16s too but getting ceiling ripped out so will replace with gu10s y/n?

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