Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Which CFL Bulbs Contain Mercury?

Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs or CFLs typically contain a very small amount of mercury sealed within the glass tubing – an average of 4-5mg. By comparison, older thermometers contain about 500mg of mercury – an amount equal to the mercury in 125 CFLs. Mercury is an essential part of CFLs; it allows the bulb to be an efficient light source. No mercury is released when the bulbs are intact (not broken) or in use.

Most makers of light bulbs have reduced mercury in their fluorescent lighting products. Thanks to technology advances and a commitment from members of the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, the average mercury content in CFLs has dropped at least 20% or more in the past several years. Some manufacturers have even made further reductions, dropping mercury content to 1mg per light bulb. (energystar.gov)

Below are the bulbs that contain mercury.

Fluorescent, Compact Fluorescent Bulbs:
- Linear, U-tube and Circline Fluorescent Tubes
- Ultraviolet: black lights, tanning bulbs, germicidal bulbs, bug zappers, phototherapy
- High Output Bulbs
- Cold Cathode Fluorescent Bulbs

High Intensity Discharge (HID) Bulbs:
- Metal Halide (sports stadiums)
- Mercury Vapor (farmyards, streets, general floods)
- Ceramic Metal Halide
- High Pressure Sodium (street lights, general floods)
- Low Pressure Sodium
- Mercury Short-arc Bulbs
- Neon Bulbs
- Xenon Short-arc Lamps

Fluomeric Lamps:
High-wattage lamps with a long-burning life (up to 20,000 hours) that replace incandescent systems. Ideal for high-bay lighting such as industrial ceilings, street lights, building facades, billboards and sports arenas.



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Wednesday, June 14, 2017

The Recommendations You Need to Know when a CFL or Other Mercury-Containing Bulb Breaks

Cleaning Up a Broken CFL 
Before Cleanup
- Have people and pets leave the room and avoid the breakage area on the way out
- Air out the room for 5-10 minutes by opening a window or door to the outdoor environment
- Shut off the central forced air heating or air conditioning system, if you have one
- Collect materials needed to clean up broken bulb: stiff paper or cardboard; sticky tape; damp paper towels or disposable wet wipes (for hard surfaces); and a glass jar with a metal lid or a sealable plastic bag

During Cleanup
DO NOT VACUUM. I REPEAT DO NOT VACUUM! 
Vacuuming is not recommended unless broken glass remains after all other cleanup steps have been taken. Vacuuming could spread mercury-containing powder or mercury vapor. Be thorough in collecting broken glass and visible powder. Scoop up glass fragments and powder using stiff paper or cardboard. Use sticky tape, such as duct tape, to pick up any remaining small glass fragments and powder. Place the used tape in the glass jar or plastic bag. See the detailed cleanup instructions for more information, and for differences in cleaning up hard surfaces versus carpeting or rugs. Place cleanup materials in a sealable container.

After Cleanup
Promptly place all bulb debris and cleanup materials, including vacuum cleaner bags, outdoors in a trash container or protected area until materials can be disposed of.  Avoid leaving any bulb fragments or cleanup materials indoors.

Next, check with your local government about disposal requirements in your area, because some localities require fluorescent bulbs (broken or unbroken) be taken to a local recycling center. If there is no such requirement in your area, you can dispose of the materials with your household trash. If practical, continue to air out the room where the bulb was broken and leave the heating/air conditioning system shut off for several hours.

If you have further questions, please call the Poison Control hotline at 1-800-222-1222.


Cleanup Steps for Hard Surfaces
Carefully scoop up glass fragments and powder using stiff paper or cardboard and place debris and paper/cardboard in a glass jar with a metal lid. If a glass jar is not available, use a sealable plastic bag.

Use sticky tape, such as duct tape, to pick up any remaining small glass fragments and powder. Place the used tape in the glass jar or plastic bag.

Wipe the area clean with damp paper towels or disposable wet wipes. Place the towels in the glass jar or plastic bag. Vacuuming of hard surfaces during cleanup is not recommended unless broken glass remains after all other cleanup steps have been taken.

If vacuuming is needed to ensure removal of all broken glass, keep the following tips in mind:
- Keep a window or door to the outdoors open
- Vacuum the area where the bulb was broken using the vacuum hose, if available; and
- Remove the vacuum bag (or empty and wipe the canister) and seal the bag/vacuum debris, and any materials used to clean the vacuum, in a plastic bag

Promptly place all bulb debris and cleanup materials, including vacuum cleaner bags, outdoors in a trash container or protected area until materials can be disposed of. Avoid leaving any bulb fragments or cleanup materials indoors.

Next, check with your local government about disposal requirements in your area, because some localities require fluorescent bulbs (broken or unbroken) be taken to a local recycling center. If there is no such requirement in your area, you can dispose of the materials with your household trash.

Wash your hands with soap and water after disposing of the jars or plastic bags containing bulb debris and cleanup materials. Continue to air out the room where the bulb was broken and leave the HVAC system shut off, as practical, for several hours.

For More Information Regarding CFL bulb, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/



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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

3 Lighting Types to Consider When Lighting your Room

Lighting or illumination is the deliberate use of light to achieve a practical or aesthetic effect. Lighting includes the use of both artificial light sources like lamps and light fixtures, as well as natural illumination by capturing daylight. Day-lighting (using windows, skylights, or light shelves) is sometimes used as the main source of light during daytime in buildings. This can save energy in place of using artificial lighting, which represents a major component of energy consumption in buildings. Proper lighting can enhance task performance, improve the appearance of an area, or have positive psychological effects on occupants.

Ambient Lighting
Ambient, or general lighting, is the most basic of the 3 types. It provides an area with overall illumination – a comfortable level of brightness without glare. Ambient light is a soft glow that blankets your space just enough for you to function without causing a harsh glare.

Ambient lighting can be accomplished with chandeliers, ceiling or wall-mount fixtures, track or recessed lights, and even table and floor lamps.

While ambient light is meant to get you safely from point A-to-B, it is not ideal for working closely with things or to highlight things around your space.

Task Lighting
Task lighting adds brightness to areas of a room where daily activities – like reading, studying, cooking or applying makeup – are performed.

To enhance visual clarity and prevent eyestrain, effective task lighting should be free of distracting glare and shadows.

Great task lighting can be achieved by recessed and track lighting, pendant lighting and specialty lighting, as well as vanity lights and floor, table, and desk lamps.

Accent Lighting
Accent, or directional, lighting is typically used to highlight certain objects or architectural features, such houseplants, paintings, sculptures, a decorative range hood or carved cabinet doors.

It should always be about three times the general illumination level. Accent lighting should never be the focal point. In fact, it’s meant to work without being seen.

Accent lighting can be provided by recessed and track lighting, chandeliers with dimmer switches, over- and specialty lighting, and wall sconces.



Make finding lighting easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com




Wednesday, May 31, 2017

How to Decode a Base Shape

Base Shape codes can get a little confusing. Let us help you break it down.


Make decoding a light bulb easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way.
Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com


If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

With Everybody Going Green, Vintage Bulbs are Still Hot, Literally and Figuratively Speaking!

Antique, Edison Retro, Nostalgic, or Vintage Bulb, whatever you call them, they are still being used today.

The reproduction of Thomas Edison's first light bulb is quite old and plain, but the exposed-filament bulbs are being used in many restaurants and diners across the globe. Their antique glow has spread like wild fire and is said to be an important part of the décor because it echoes candlelight and flatters both the diner and dinner. These antique bulbs also tap into the popular Victorian Industrial look, retro-chic.

A lot of thought and expense goes into lighting eateries. Upscale budgets easily reach six figures — because it can shape a diner’s experience almost as much as the food. But these antique bulbs, though less efficient than fluorescent or LEDs, can build an ambience at a cost.

With everybody going green, these bulb are still hot, literally and figuratively speaking! Even though they use a lot of energy, they are being sought-after, not only for restaurants and diners, but also for home décor. The demand is said to be high enough that even retailers like Pottery Barn, Restoration Hardware and Anthropologie sell them for a pretty penny.

Just like bell bottoms (or flare pants, or widelegs, whichever name you choose), nothing ever goes out of style.



Make finding an Edison Retro Bulbs easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

11 Essentials to Have Before Severe Weather Hits


Being prepared with the most accurate forecast is essential, but sometimes mother nature sneaks up on us without warning.

We've seen severe, and well, weird weather in this country over the years. From strong wind storms, to sleet and hail, to tornadoes, even a few feet of snow. Let us not forget the arctic temperatures leaving cars and buildings encrusted in ice. Then there's the brush fires, earthquakes, mudslides, and flooding to deal with. No matter where you live, you've probably dealt with a few of these at one point or another.

We can't always predict the weather, but we can be prepared when we know what's coming our way.

Are you storm and emergency ready?


At a minimum, you should have these 11 basic emergency supplies listed below:

- Water: 3-day supply for evacuation/2-weeks for home
- Non-perishable Food: 3-day supply for evacuation/2-weeks supply for home
- Clothing: including a jacket or coat, long pants, a long sleeve shirt, sturdy shoes/sneakers, hat and gloves, and a sleeping bag or warm blankets for each person
- LED Flashlights: LED Flashlights offer very bright light, last forever and require few battery changes.
- Battery-powered or Hand-crank Radio
- Extra Batteries: This is a no-brainer! Spare batteries are important for your weather radios, flashlights, you name it.
- First Aid Kit: Available at the Red Cross Store or any retail establishment.
- Charged Cell Phone (with charger)
- Medications (at least a 7-day supply)
- Multi-purpose Tool
- Duct Tape: Universal fix-it solution



Make finding flashlights and batteries easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Which Light Bulb is Dimmable?

If you would like to be able to control the brightness of a bulb, you will need one that is dimmable. Being able to adjust your light source means you’re able to create the perfect atmosphere anywhere.

Dimmable Incandescent Bulbs
Incandescent Bulbs have the largest controllable dimming range from 100% full light, all the way down to 0%, no light. Incandescent Bulbs produce light by allowing an electric current to flow through a metal filament surrounded by inactive nitrogen and argon gas. The current heats the filament and produces light at the same time. Reducing the current will produce a little less light but doesn’t prevent the incandescent from working. Lowering the voltage will benefit your incandescent bulbs, causing them to outlast their typical 1,000-hour life span.

Dimmable Halogen Bulbs

All halogen bulbs are dimmable; this includes xenon and krypton bulbs as well. A halogen bulb operates the same way an incandescent bulb does. However, halogens have a quartz capsule and some additional gas from the halogen family that slows down the burning process of the metal filament, allowing them to last twice as long as incandescents. Your incandescent hall light and the halogen bulbs in your track lighting can share dimmer without a problem.

While dimming makes incandescents last longer, your dimmable halogen bulb may come to a premature end. When a halogen bulb is dimmed down to 20%, the gases around filament begin to build up on the capsule glass instead. Then the bulb begins to operate as an incandescent, leaving the filament to overheat and burn out.

Dimmable CFL Bulbs
Dimmable CFL's are dimmable because of the special electronics in the ballast (housed in the plastic part at the base of the bulb) which steps up the current to be extremely high frequency to create a circuit through the gas in the tube and ignite the bulb. The modern CFL-compliant dimmers work with this, but they also work with other types of bulbs, by reducing the current flow.

NOTE: Non-dimmable CFLs cannot and should not ever be used with dimmer switches. This isn’t so much because they won’t perform well, but because it actually presents a pretty serious fire hazard. Fire is probably a remote risk, but it could happen, more likely it could damage the bulb or substantially reduce its lifespan.

CFLs have less resistance than incandescent bulbs, which means all hell breaks loose when they are exposed to the electrical fluctuations that a dimmer sends. They can actually consume up to 5x the current as when they're not connected to a dimmer. This overheats the bulb and can actually catch on fire.

Dimmable LED Bulbs
While many LED bulbs are now dimmable, not all of them are and not all of them dim daylight lighting in the same way. Since LEDs consume such a low wattage, many types of dimmers do not function with LED in the same way that they do with high wattage load incandescents.

When dimming an LED, you may notice the following:
- Smaller amount of dimming range
  (Typically 70-90% range vs. 100% with incandescent)
- LED Bulbs may not shut off at lowest dim setting: this is caused by the dimmer thinking the bulb is completely off due to the low amount of wattage an LED consumes
- On dimming systems based on X10 or Power Line Carrier (PLC) control technology, LEDs may flicker when modules are communicating due to the small fluctuations in power on the line
- Current LEDs do not shift color when dimmed, in other words they will not offer a soft fiery glow when dimmed like an incandescent



Make finding dimmable light easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

The Many Heroes in the Month of May

The month of May is looked at by some as Heroes Appreciation Month. It is also be looked at as National Military Appreciation Month and National Inventors Month. However you look at it, May is the month of many heroes.

Everybody who does something good, important, and valuable deserves a day in their honor. Memorial Day, an American holiday observed on the last Monday of May, honors men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. Many people observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries or memorials, holding family gatherings and participating in parades. Flags are also positioned half-staff to remember the more than 1 million men and women who gave their lives for our country.


Teachers certainly are among the most deserving too.
The first Tuesday of May honors those hard working, patient and understanding people whom we entrust our children to. Teachers mold our kids in a positive direction, affecting who they are and who they become. From Kindergarten through college,
teachers are an important part of our children's lives.

Then we have inventors and their inventions, who shape the way we live our lives. Thomas Edison is usually credited with the invention of the light bulb, but the famous American inventor wasn't the only one who contributed to the development of this revolutionary technology. The story of the light bulb begins long before Edison patented the first commercially successful light bulb in 1879.

In 1800, Italian inventor Alessandro Volta developed the first practical method of generating electricity. Made of alternating discs of zinc and copper -- interspersed with layers of cardboard soaked in salt water -- the pile conducted electricity when a copper wire was connected at either end. Alessandro Vota's "glowing copper wire" was considered to be one of the earliest manifestations of incandescent lighting. Shortly after, an English inventor named Humphrey Davy produced the world's first electric lamp by connecting voltaic piles to charcoal electrodes. However, neither of these were a practical source of lighting. These resources of lighting either burned out quickly or were way too bright for use in a home or work space.

Soon after, a scientist, a chemist and an inventor designed light bulbs that solved problems of previous inventors; but none got as close to perfection as Edison and his team of researchers. After testing different materials that could be used for the filaments, Edison and his team found that carbonized bamboo filament could burn for more than 1,200 hours. Then, years later, came the carbon and tungsten filaments; tungsten being the primary material used in incandescent bulb filaments today. But just like the number of other filaments, incandescent bulbs and tungsten are going to be the thing of the past.

The men and woman who died serving our country, the educators who instill respect, value and integrity in our children, and the inventors who changed the world we live in all have one thing in common, and that is a hero. A hero is a brave person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.



Make finding a light easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Decoding an LED Bulb

Ever wonder what the LED bulb code means? Let us help you break it down.


Make decoding a light bulb easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Considering LED Tubes to Optimize Plant Growth?

If you are considering LED tubes to optimize plant growth, choosing the correct light source for your needs is essential. And as we all know, natural sunlight is the cheapest source available, however for the horticulture industry, it is not always attainable in sufficient quantities. Therefore, the use of artificial light has become very common in order to increase crop production and quality.

LED lights is a flexible and efficient way to give your plants and crops the light they need to grow. LED-based solid-state lighting (SSL) is said to boost productivity in greenhouse and plant-factory operations and reduce energy consumption. LED sources can produce light at the specific wavelengths that optimize plant growth, and a number of universities and commercial enterprises worldwide are pursuing further research on the topic.

Growers like Sustainable Local Foods use LED lighting to produce plants year round while keeping costs down.

How can LED lighting add value to your crops?
- Increased production
- Shortening of the total growth cycle
        - Better plant uniformity
        - Better space utility
- Improved plant quality
- Energy savings
- Better germination rate
- Higher multiplication factor
- Higher survival rate in rooting
- Improved/controlled stretching process
- Accelerated hardening phase

All of which can result in increased profit for you!

View our Grow Lights that are ready to ship!

Because LED technology is ever changing we many not have any listed on our website at this time. Please contact our exceptional sales team to find the right bulb to fit your growing needs at: 1-800-772-5267

LIGHT IS CRITICAL. LET US BE YOUR TRUSTED SOURCE.



Make finding the right grow light easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Plant Grow Lights: Which Kind to Choose

Grow lights make it easy to grow plants indoors, and luckily there are many grow light systems to choose from. All are helpful, but each type of grow light offers advantages and disadvantages. Use the guide below to select the best grow light for your needs!

HID Plant Grow Lights
The brightest grow lights are high-intensity discharge (HID) lights. They can be installed anywhere in your home, garage, or greenhouse to supplement existing light, and they can serve as the sole source of light for your plants.

These bulbs pass electricity through a glass or ceramic tube containing a mixture of gases. The blend of gases determines the color of the light given off by each type of lamp. HID lights are twice as efficient as fluorescent lamps; one 400-watt HID lamp emits as much light as 800 watts of fluorescent tubing. All HID lights can run on regular 120-volt household current but they require special fixtures with ballasts.

There are two categories of HID lamps: metal halide (MH) and high-pressure sodium (HPS). Both emit a much more intense light than fluorescent bulbs, which also pass electricity through a gas-filled tube.

MH bulbs emit light that's strongest at the blue end of the spectrum. It's a stark, cool white light that produces compact, leafy growth. Because the light does not distort the colors of the plants and people it illuminates, this type of plant grow light is a good choice for a light display in a living area.

Agrosun gold halide bulbs are color-corrected to give off more red/orange light than regular metal halides. This helps boost flowering in addition to supporting compact foliar growth. Halide bulbs should be replaced about once a year.

HPS bulbs last slightly longer and should be replaced every 18 months. They emit light strong at the red/orange end of the spectrum, which promotes flowering. However, HPS lighting may also produce leggy growth unless used together with daylight or a metal halide system.

High-Intensity Fluorescent Grow Lights
High-intensity fluorescent bulbs are also an excellent choice. Fixtures resemble those of HID bulbs, but they are less expensive, and cool and warm bulbs are available that fit in the same ballast. Choose according to which light is more appealing to your eye.

Fluorescent Grow Lights
Traditional fluorescent tubes are the most economical choice if you're going to use grow lights. They can be used in inexpensive shop light fixtures or multi-tier growing carts.

The light produced by fluorescent tubes is much less intense than the other choices, so you are more limited in what you can grow. If you're just trying to supplement natural light rather than replace it, fluorescent light may be a good option.

Fluorescent tubes come in cool, warm, or full-spectrum. Light from cool tubes has a blue cast, while warm tubes emit a pink/white light. Full-spectrum tubes closely approximate the color of natural daylight. Full-spectrum bulbs are a bit more expensive but many growers consider them worth the price since the color of the light doesn't distort the color of your plants.

Less light is emitted from the ends of the fluorescent tubes than from the center. Plants with lower light needs should be placed under the 3 inches of tube at either end of the fixture.

Fluorescent tubes should be replaced every 18 months if they are being used approximately 16 hours per day.

LED Grow Lights
LED grow lights have been proven to produce larger crop yields and decrease time until harvest, all on top of reducing energy up to 70%.

LEDs provide the perfect lighting for all types of plants and flowers allowing the grower to adapt the light exactly to the needs of various crops, in different cycles, promoting healthy plant growth.

The connection between LED lighting and commercial growers of flowers and vegetables appear to be a perfect match. Whether in a greenhouse setting requiring supplemental light or an indoor setting relying completely on artificial light, electricity cost for horticultural lighting has been the major expense for farmers.

LED grow lights are very simple to install and typically have a 50,000-hour life span, with zero maintenance, which means you won't need to change lamps. Additionally, you don’t need to remove the waste heat generated from the ballast when growing with LEDs.

The initial cost of an LED grow light is considerably more than an HPS or MH grow light, but factoring in all of the benefits, LEDs are a better investment.



Check out the Grow Lights we have in stock:
- 50R20/PL
| 120V | 50W | E26 Medium screw base | R20 shape | Reflector

- 60A19/PG | 120V | 60W | E26 Medium screw base | A19 shape 

Can't find what you're looking for? Call 1-800-772-5267 and ask one of our sales people to help. No matter the kind of light bulb you're looking for, you're likely to find it at Bulb Direct.  



Make finding the right grow light easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Spring Cleaning Tips to Save You Energy


Looking to Spring clean your home to save energy and cash?
Saving on energy is really that easy! Here are 10 tips to do just that.

1. Dust your light bulbs. 
Over time, dust buildup on light bulbs makes your home appear dimmer than it actually is. Dust them off, and you may be able to use less light.

2. Let the light in. 
With more hours of daylight, you can use natural light from the sun to brighten your home for longer.

3. Upgrade your lighting. 
LEDs use up to 75% less electricity than incandescent bulbs and can last 20 times longer, according to ENERGY STAR. Plus PPL Electric Utilities customers can get instant discounts on light bulbs at participating retailers. We recommend your standard household LEDs:

- LED8.5A19/F/850
- LED9A19/DIM/827K
- LED9.5A19/OMNI/3K

4. Clean inside and out. 
We all want the inside of our fridge to be clean, but don’t forget the outside, too. Check that the area behind your fridge is free of dust or other obstructions. Make sure there is space between the fridge and the wall so that air can circulate. If you have an older refrigerator, clean the refrigerator coils to help it run more efficiently.

5. Recycle your old fridge. 
If you have a spare refrigerator in the garage or basement, you could be wasting $150 in electricity a year, according to ENERGY STAR. And fridges and freezers from the 1970s cost 4 times more to operate. Is there an old model draining the budget in your house?

6. Take a breath of fresh air. 
As the weather begins to warm up, open your windows to cool your home if your health permits you to do so. You’ll save money on air conditioning.

7. Install new filters. 
Inspect, clean or change the air filters every month in your heat pump, central air conditioner or furnace. Some room air conditioners have filters that need to be cleaned or changed as well. A dirty filter can increase energy costs and damage your equipment, leading to early failure.

8. Add some shade. 
If planting is part of your spring plans, consider using plants to provide shade to your home or to help insulate your house. When choosing a spot to plant your tree, make sure it will have plenty of room to grow to full maturity. That includes how close it is to a power line. If you’ll be digging, be sure to call 811 three business days beforehand. Utilities will mark the location of any underground electric, gas or cable lines.

9. Save your seals. 
If you have a sliding door that goes outdoor, make sure the track is clean. Dirt and debris can damage the seal, which would allow cool air or heat to escape your home all year long.

10. Get a professional opinion.
Sign up for a home energy audit or survey to get customized advice to save energy at your home.



Make finding light easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at www.bulbdirect.com 

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1.800.772.5267 or you can email us at 
sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

How to Decode a Light Bulb

Ever wonder what a bulb code means? Let us help you break it down.



Make decoding a light bulb easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

10 Lighting Tips & Facts to Improve Your Photography


 1. The broader the light source, the softer the light.
What does this mean? Well, any source of broad light will minimize shadows, reducing the contrast and suppressing texture. A narrow light source does the opposite. This is because, with a broad source, light rays hit your subject from more directions, which tends to fill in shadows and give more even illumination to the scene.

Tip: Position a portrait subject near a large, bright window that does not receive direct sunlight.


2. The closer the light source, the softer the light.
And well, the farther the source, the harder the light. If you move the light farther away, you make it relatively smaller, and therefore more narrow.

Tip: When photographing people indoors by available light, move lamps closer to them or vice versa for more flattering light.


3. Diffusion scatters light, essentially making the light source broader and therefore softer.
When clouds drift in front of the sun, shadows get less distinct. Add fog, and the shadows disappear. Clouds, overcast skies, and fog act as diffusion—something that scatters the light in many directions. On overcast or foggy days, the entire sky, in effect, becomes a single very broad light source—nature’s softbox. 

Tip: Materials such as translucent plastic or white fabric can be used to diffuse a harsh light source. You can place a diffuser in front of an artificial light, such as a strobe. Or, if you're in bright sun, use a light tent or white scrim to soften the light falling on your subject.


4. Bouncing light acts as diffusion.
Try aiming a narrow light source at a broad, matte surface—such as a wall or ceiling. It not only reflects the light but also diffuses it by scattering it over a wider area.

Now use a shiny reflector. What happens?
The light will stay fairly narrow on the bounce. The most extreme type of shiny reflector—a mirror, will keep the light focused pretty much as narrowly in the reflection.

Tip: Crumple a big piece of aluminum foil, spread in out again, and wrap it around a piece of cardboard, shiny side out. It makes a good reflector that’s not quite as soft in effect as a matte white surface—great for adding sparkly highlights.


5. The farther the light source, the more it falls off— gets dimmer on your subject.
The rule says that light falls off as the square of the distance. That sounds complicated, but isn’t really. If you move a light twice as far from your subject, you end up with only one-quarter of the light on the subject.

In other words, light gets dim fast when you move it away— something to keep in mind if you’re moving your lights or your subject to change the quality of the light.

Also remember that bouncing light—even into a shiny reflector that keeps light directional— adds to the distance it travels.

Tip: Set your camera’s flash (pop-up or hot-shoe) to fill flash for outdoor portraits on harshly lit days. This will lighten shadows on your subject’s face but won’t affect the background exposure—it will fall off by then.


6. Light falloff can be used to vary the relationship between the light on your subject and your background.
If you place a light close to your subject, the falloff from the subject to the background will be more pronounced. Move the light farther from your subject, and the background will be relatively brighter.

The same holds true for sidelighting: With a light close to the side of your subject, the falloff of light across the frame will be more pronounced than if the light is farther away. 

Tip: If your subject is frontlit by windowlight, keep the person close to the window to make the room’s back wall fall off in darkness. If you want some illumination on the wall, though, move the person back closer to it and away from the window.


7. Frontlighting de-emphasizes texture; lighting from the side, above, or below emphasizes it.
 A portraitist may want to keep the light source close to the axis of the lens to suppress skin wrinkles, while a landscapist may want side lighting to emphasize the texture of rocks, sand, and foliage. Generally, the greater the angle at which the light is positioned to the subject, the more texture is revealed. 

Tip: To retain detail in your fluffy pet’s fur, position the light source somewhat to the side rather than straight on. 


8. Shadows create volume.
That’s how photographers describe three-dimensionality, the sense of seeing an image as an object in space, not projected on a flat surface.

Again, lighting from the side, above, or below, by casting deeper and longer shadows, creates the sense of volume. Still-life, product, and landscape photographers use angular lighting for this reason. 

Tip: Try “Hollywood lighting” for a dramatic portrait. Position a light high above and slightly to the side of your subject, angled down, but not so much that the shadow of the nose falls more than midway down the upper lip. 


9. Backlight can be used as highly diffused lighting.
Very few subjects are totally backlit, that is, in pure silhouette, with no light at all falling from the front. A person with his back to a bright window will have light reflected from an opposite wall falling on him. Someone standing outside with her back to bright sunlight will have light falling on her from the open sky in front of her. In either case, you’ll need to increase exposure to record the light falling on the subject—and this light will deemphasize facial texture and dimensionality.

Tip: For spark in a backlit portrait or silhouette, try compositions that include the light source. This can drive your meter crazy, though, so bracket your exposures.


10. Light has color, even when it looks “white.”
This is called color temperature, and our eye/brain computer is very adept at adjusting our perception so that we hardly notice it. Digital sensors and film, though, may record color casts where our eyes didn’t see them.

The color of early morning and late afternoon sunlight is warm in tone, while open shade at midday can be quite bluish. Tungsten light bulbs cast very yellow light. And any surface that light bounces off can add its color.

With digital cameras, you can use the white-balance control to neutralize color casts or to emphasize them—for example, to add a warmer tone to a landscape or portrait. With slide film, you had to choose the right film for the light you’d be shooting in, or compensate with filters.

Tip: Landscapes shot on clear days can be very blue, especially in the shadows. Set your camera’s color balance to Cloudy, which acts as a warming filter for a more golden glow.


The three main types of studio lights are Florescent, LED and Tungsten.
Florescent: These lights are energy efficient but give off a relatively low output of light, usually around 60-100 watts. The bulbs are readily available, cheap and easy to replace.

LED: LED lights are very energy efficient and produce very little heat. They are composed of lots of small “light emitting diodes” (LEDs) and generally last a long time.

Tungsten: Tungsten (or “tungsten halogen”) lights offer the highest output levels but also generate a lot of heat. The bulbs are fairly inexpensive to replace but can change color temperature if brightness levels are adjusted.


For Florescent Lights, We Recommend: 95-FO17/950/24-OS
- T8
- Color temp: 5000k
- CRI > 90
- 17W
- Medium Bipin Base

 
Click here for the Sylvania Florescent Lamp


 
For LED Lights, We Recommend: LED7WBR20
- 7W
- 120V
- Color temp: 4000K
- 550 Lumens
- Dimmable

Click here for the EiKO LED Lamp
 


For Tungsten Lights, We Recommend: EPN-US
- 35W
- 12V
- GZ6.35 base
- MR16 shape

Click here for the Ushio Tungsten Halogen Lamp



Make finding Photography Lighting easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Thursday, March 16, 2017

We Can Now Ship 48" or Larger Tubes

Behind the scenes here at Bulb Direct, our team has been beavering away on trying to provide the best for our customers. We've been listening to you and now have the capacity to ship select 48" or larger tubes. Whether switching from older options or replacing current LED lights, we've got your back!

While the T8 model of lights were originally introduced as fluorescent lighting, we are seeing the benefits of using newer LED T8 lamps instead of the more traditional option. There are many ways businesses can reap the benefits of choosing LED lamps outside of the "saving money and time" and that is through Green Productivity. For businesses concerned with their carbon footprint, LEDs have a major advantage thanks to their incredible energy-efficiency capabilities. Unlike incandescent bulbs that contain mercury, LEDs can also be recycled.

Consumer demand for quality LED replacement products has encouraged the lighting industry and companies like ours to change. Much of this development was due to building and facility managers looking for ways to replace problematic fluorescent tubes with energy-saving, long life solutions. LED fluorescent replacement tubes allow for replacing linear fluorescent tubes, commonly referred to as T8/T10/T12.

These larger tubes are ideal for replacing overhead lighting, upgrading existing retail fixtures, signage, and for custom lighting accents.

We Recommend: HN - Helen Lamp T5HO
Socket Type: T5 - Fixture with Bi-Pin G5 T5 sockets
Power Supply: D - Supports electronic T5 fluorescent ballast
Dimension: 48" Tube
Lamp Wattage: 25W - Replaces 54W, 4ft T5HO Fluorescent Lamp


Features & Benefits
- Directly replaces 54W 4ft T5HO fluorescent lamps
- Supports plug-and-play ballast-driven installation                                 
- Delivers over 3,000 lumens of usable light

- Excellent light quality - CRI>80
- 50,000 hours life
- 5-Year Warranty


We Recommend: Linear T8 Direct
Base: G13

Dimension: 48" Tube
Lamp Wattage: 17W 

Equivalent Wattage: 32WInput Line Voltage: Ballast Dependent     

Features & Benefits
                    
- Dimmable                     
- Energy Saving 46%

- Excellent light quality - CRI>82
- 50,000 hours life                       
- 5-Year Warranty


We Recommend: LED T8 Ballast Bypass
Dimension: 48" Tube
Lumens: 1,800
Lamp Wattage: 15W
Equivalent Wattage: 32W
CCT: 4,000K

Features & Benefits
- O
perates on direct voltage 120-277v, by disconnecting and bypassing the ballast using non-shunted sockets only
- Ultra-high performance LEDs deliver 120 lpw
- Up to 50% instant energy savings
- Excellent light quality - CRI>80
- 50,000 hours life
- 5-Year Warranty 




Make finding tubes easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Manufacturer Spotlight: Satco

Bulb Direct is proud to announce that they've added Satco, a high quality brand name lighting source to their growing list of suppliers.

Aware of the competitive marketplace that exists, Bulb Direct recognized the need for more quality lighting brands and believes Satco lives up to its description in every way; Satco - Lighting Innovation and Technology.

Since its commencement in 1966, Satco has established itself as a premier source for lighting and electrical related products. The Satco brand of light bulbs, electrical accessories, lighting hardware, and glassware are primarily sold through its 8,000 retail lighting showrooms and electrical distributors. And just like the other high quality brands we sell, Eiko, GE, Ushio, and Philips, Satco’s inventories and distribution networks are legendary in the industry.

The company over the years have continuously been innovative through its designs, features and quality and has attained the following awards:

- 2008 Hygrade Brand
- 2008 Housekeeping Research Institute
- 2009 “Energy Star Partner of the Year” in the lighting manufacturing category
- 2015 LED Filament Style Lamps in Lighting for Tomorrow



If you're looking for high quality Satco brand light bulbs, look no further. At Bulb Direct we select the best suppliers for our customers.

For information about the company’s product line visit our website or call us at 800-772-5267 or email us at sales@bulbdirect.com We will help you find the right bulb to meet your needs.



Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Spread the Word to End the Word!

Bulb Direct is a proud supporter of the Golisano Foundation & the Special Olympics and that we are taking the pledge to end the R-word.

"Spread the Word to End the Word" is a national campaign to encourage people to pledge to stop using the word retard.

End the "R" word advocates believe the use of the word “retard(ed)” in colloquial and everyday speech is hurtful and dehumanizing to individuals with intellectual disabilities. They advocate for the use of language that respects the dignity of people with mental disabilities. Advocates believe individuals with cognitive disabilities and other developmental disabilities are capable of enjoying life’s experiences and that causal references to the words retard or retarded makes a person with intellectual disabilities feel "less than human."

The Spread the Word to End the Word movement was created by youth with and without intellectual disabilities. And according to the Special Olympics:

“The motivation for the campaign was driven by a united passion to promote the positive contributions people with intellectual disabilities make to communities around the world combined with a simple call to action that also symbolizes positive attitude change and a commitment to make the world a more accepting place for all people.”

Why Pledge
The R-word is the word 'retard(ed)'. Why does it hurt? The R-word hurts because it is exclusive, offensive and derogatory.

This campaign asks people to pledge to stop saying the R-word as a starting point toward creating more accepting attitudes and communities for all people. We here at Bulb Direct pledge to never use the R-word that degrades people all across the world.

To learn more about this national campaign and how you can help, visit www.r-word.org/.
To take the pledge, http://www.r-word.org/r-word-pledge.aspx?org=GolisanoFoundation

Pledge today!


Thursday, February 23, 2017

How Many Lumens Do I Need?

Watts measure the amount of energy that is required to produce light, whereas lumens measure the amount of light that is emitted from a source. Lumens are the newest unit of measurement for light bulbs.

Lumens equals brightness and watts measure energy use, not light output. With new, energy-efficient LED technology, we can no longer rely upon wattage to indicate how bright a bulb is.

If you are asking yourself "Why would I want a brighter bulb?" well, in the case of a floor lamp or an overhead fixture, a brighter bulb means more Lumens per square foot. With more Lumens per square foot in your room, you may not need extra lighting.

This does not mean to go out and buy a 1,000-Watt LED bulb to light your living room. It just means a 75-Watt or 100-Watt LED could reduce the number of light sources needed in each room of your home. Eliminating extra lighting in your home means less power used and less money spent.

Lumens
45080011001600
Standard40W60W75W100W

Incandescents









New Halogen29W43W53W72W

Incandescents









CFLs9W14W19W23W









LEDs4-8W8-13W11-15W16-20W
 
To know the right light bulb for your space, view the preferred wattage on the Lumens Watt Equivalency Comparison Chart provided above.



Not sure what light bulb is perfect for your space? Maybe these will help!
- Standard Incandescents: 20T6.5/CL | 60A/RVL
- New Halogen Incandescents: FCS-OS | ENX-OS
- CFL: F05BX/SPX27 | DT7/65
- LED: LED9A19/DIM/827K | 9.5A19/OMNI/4K New Product!

Make finding light easier with Bulb Direct. Bulb Direct is lighting the way. Don’t be left in the dark. Check us out at http://www.bulbdirect.com

If you have any questions or concerns, please call us at 1-800-772-5267 or you can email us at sales@bulbdirect.com