Your Guide to Residential LED Lighting

LED home lighting has become the new fixture of choice for residential lighting. They offer a number of benefits over traditional lighting. As people renovate and build their homes, questions about the safety, appropriate usage, and efficiency of LED lighting begin to surface. If you’re new to LED lighting, this comprehensive guide aims to address these inquiries by highlighting its strengths and weaknesses. However, if you’re in a rush, here is a quick list of the pros and cons to LED lighting:

Pros of LED Lighting

  • More energy efficient: LEDs use significantly less power and produce less heat.
  • Makes your space look great: Modern performance LED fixtures offer great color vividness across the visible spectrum and warm dim with your circadian rhythm, ensuring your space looks great at any brightness.

Cons of LED Lighting

  • Initial cost: LEDs have a higher upfront cost but become more similar in price when accounting for the long-term energy savings.
  • Blue light emission: Budget-friendly LED fixtures are more prone to having blue light emissions. Thankfully, a wide variety of performance LED fixtures have manufacturing techniques to omit this issue and provide high-quality light.

How Safe Is Home LED Lighting? Dispelling Myths and Concerns

LEDs are much safer than their traditional counterparts. While older, non-LED bulbs were known for their tendency to run hot, LED lights are cool. This means LED lights are much safer to the touch. Traditional lights also had minor health concerns from their ultraviolet (UV) and infrared (IR) light emissions. Thankfully, LED lights emit almost zero UV and IR. The type of light emitted by LEDs makes them less likely to emit IR light. Because LEDs consume less power, they also emit less EMF. Overall, LEDs are a safer light fixture than traditional fixtures and are great for any part of your home.

LED Fixtures Are Significantly More Energy Efficient

LED light fixtures are significantly more energy efficient than traditional bulbs, offering several additional benefits. As previously mentioned, the efficiency of the LED fixtures means a larger percentage is used to create light instead of wasteful heat. This keeps LED lights running cooler. The lower power draw of LED light fixtures also produces less EMF. LEDs that run cooler means your home runs cooler on hotter nights. Combined with their lower power consumption, LED fixtures will lower your electric bill at the end of every month.

LED Fixtures Are Long Lasting

The efficiency of LED fixtures allow them to typically last longer. With an average lifespan of over 15,000 to 25,000 hours, any LED lighting you install will rarely need your attention. If you always use your light for eight hours a day, these lights will last 5 to 8.5 years! However, smart LED bulbs have additional components and complexity such as Bluetooth, Wifi or Matter and may not last as long. For voice or app control, we strongly recommend a dedicated lighting control system.

How Good is the Light Produced? Where To Use LED Lighting

While traditional fixtures all create a similar spectrum of light, the quality of light produced by an LED can vary greatly on the fixture. LEDs are often associated with emitting blue light. However, modern manufacturing techniques mean that more premium fixtures offer vivid, color-accurate lighting with balanced blue lights that exceed the performance of traditional bulbs. Modern performance LED fixtures can even mimic the warm dim quality that traditional bulbs naturally have to aid in your circadian rhythm at the end of the day.

Color Accuracy

The color accuracy, warm dim and efficiency make them a great choice for all rooms, including bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens, and living areas. Their adaptability makes them ideal for accent lighting, task lighting, ambient lighting, and decorative purposes. You can see the accuracy and vividness provided by an LED fixture based on its CRI rating.

Not All LED Fixtures Are Directly Retrofittable From Traditional Fixtures

When retrofitting LED fixtures, it’s important to note the operating voltage. Not all fixtures run at the same voltage as traditional, non-LED fixtures. This also means that traditional, non-LED specific dimmers are unlikely to work with LEDs. When picking fixtures, it’s best to consult with your lighting designer and/or electrician on what options are compatible with your planned electrical layout.

Using LED Fixtures: Practical Considerations and Recommendations

When it comes to using LED fixtures, quality matters. While budget-friendly options may be tempting, investing in higher-quality LED fixtures ensures better comfort, consistent brightness and beam pattern. LED diodes are not all created equally. Some diodes are brighter than others, and some diodes are warmer than others.

Performance LED manufacturers will make sure they only ship diodes that are imperceptibly similar in color and brightness. Meanwhile, budget brands will save money by shipping LEDs that are “similar enough.” That means when you install budget fixtures in your home, you risk having the color and brightness gently vary from fixture to fixture, making your space feel unfinished. When comparing budget fixtures next to performance fixtures, the difference is immediately apparent.

Picking the Right LED Fixture For Your Home

Choosing the right LED fixtures will change the feel of your home once the sun goes down. The right lighting is crucial for creating comfortable, aesthetically pleasing, and energy-efficient spaces. While budget-friendly options may seem attractive initially, investing in higher-quality LED fixtures from reputable manufacturers ensures consistent brightness, color accuracy, and longevity. Additionally, they also minimize the risk of compatibility issues and maintenance headaches.

If you’d like help picking the right LEDs for your home design, it’s best to consult with a lighting designer who can help show you a few options of varying quality and price. When you pick Lighting by Design to help you curate your space, we will create a lighting plan that enhances the ambiance and functionality of your living spaces. If you’re ready to explore the possibilities for your home, feel free to give us a call at 415-883-7700. We’re here to help you illuminate your home with confidence and style.

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