Monday, November 3, 2014

Confused about Wattage? Here’s help!

In the days when incandescent bulbs were your only choice, a watt was just a watt. It was pretty easy to decide whether you needed a 40, 60, or 100 watt bulb.

But with newer energy-saving options, the game has changed. When you look at bulb specifications today, a watt in an incandescent is not the same as a watt in an LED or a watt in a CFL.

Why is this? And what does it mean?

First, wattage measures electricity, not brightness. A bulb’s brightness is measured in lumens. The more energy efficient the bulb is, the lower the wattage required for the same brightness compared to a less efficient bulb.

This chart shows just how much less electricity—wattage—is needed for different bulb types. As you can see, lower wattage bulbs deliver the same brightness—lumens—much more efficiently that their incandescent counterpart.

Brightness (lumens)
LED (watts)
CFL (watts)
Incandescent (watts)
450
4-5
9-13
40
800
6-8
13-15
60
1,100
9-13
18-25
75
1,600
16-20
23-30
100

Suppose you want to replace a 75 watt incandescent bulb with a CFL. As shown above, you would need an 18 to 25 watt CFL bulb to deliver the same brightness as your incandescent.

Using energy-efficient bulbs can make a big difference in our energy consumption. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that if every household replaced a single incandescent bulb with an ENERGY STAR® LED or CFL, we could save nearly $700 million annually in energy costs.



Make the right choice with the right information! For help with all your light bulb needs, call us at Bulb Direct.

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