Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) have existed since the 1960s but only recently evolved to the point where they are useful in mainstream lighting applications. While incandescent and fluorescent lights consist of filaments in glass bulbs or bulbs that contain gases, LEDs consist of small capsules or lenses that are extremely efficient and long-lasting. LED lighting is gaining popularity due to the growing energy conservation movement and advances in technology that made them really come down in price.
Many of our customers wonder if they should replace their existing T8 by LEDs or T5 tubes. Here are the reasons why LEDs are the best solution:
Most fluorescent tubes may not last more than 14,000-20,000 hours of usage. But LEDs last much longer: from 25,000 to 50,000 hours of usage. And as with all light bulbs, the life of the luminaire will depend on the quality. All lights emit heat and the better the heat sink, the longer the lifespan. A good fluorescent light may last up to 15,000 hours but can also die before that based on the environment and the quality of heat sink. Similarly life of LED will depend on the quality of its heat sink and the internal circuitry. Just like cheap CFLs, cheaper LEDs may not last long. This why, we always consider buying a robust LED solution as a better approach.
Better efficiency: the newest LEDs are about 20% more efficient than T5 fluorescent tubes.
While some may complain that LEDs have a lower lumen per watt ratio than fluorescents, judging the two in this category is really like comparing apples and oranges. There simply is no direct comparison. This is because LEDs can get by with less lumens because their directional nature ensures you get a greater concentration of light exactly where you need it. On the other hand, fluorescent tubes waste light within the fixture and illuminate unnecessary places. The bottom line is: don’t get too hung up on lumens, if you’re going to do a comparison, consider the delivered lumens of both the lamp and luminaire together.
LEDs are the greenest option!
LEDs are the greenest option available in all forms of lighting. And that is because:
- It does not contain any mercury, which is harmful for environment unlike the fluorescent bulbs and lights.
- It lasts much longer than T5 tubes and thus their disposal is less of a concern.
- Fluorescent lights on the other hand contain mercury that is harmful for environment and their disposal is a concern. And this is a problem with both CFLs and fluorescent tube lights.