Lights Lights Lights

There are many types of light bulbs and each type is designed with a specific use in mind. Today, I’m going to share with you some information about the common types of light bulbs, how it works and what are its uses. 

1) Incandescent

The incandescent light bulb is the most widely used light bulb today. It is the least expensive and can last up to 700 to 1,000 hours of usage.  This type of light bulb has a warm and inviting tone and it can be used with a dimmer. However, they are the least energy efficient amongst the other types of light bulbs available.

2) Halogen

Halogen bulbs are incandescent lamps with a small amount of halogen such as bromine or iodine. They are more expensive but a little more energy efficient than incandescent bulbs. These bulbs could get incredibly warm as the heat gets concentrated on a smaller envelope surface near the filament. Since these types of bulbs operate at very high temperatures, users must pay more attention when using these halogen bulbs so that they don’t accidentally burn passersby or come in contact with flammable materials. 

Also, never touch the glass part of the bulb with your bare hands! The oil from your fingers will shorten the bulb’s life and weaken the glass. It can also cause the bulb to explode as the bulb might warm too quickly when it’s turned on because of the oil rubbed off from your hand on the bulb. 

In summary, halogen bulbs are better as they are a little more efficient and have longer lifespan as compared to the incandescent bulb. They are fairly small in size and can be dimmed but are more expensive and can be a fire hazard in certain areas as they burn at a much higher temperature.

3) Fluorescent

These are low energy bulbs which are tubular in shape. These tubes are filled with argon gas and mercury. They are usually found in large areas like industrial facilities, basements, workplaces, garages, or attics.  They are well-liked since its bulb life can last for 10,000 to 20,000 hours. They are also very efficient as they normally produce more light and very little heat. They cannot be used with dimmers.

For this type of light, the fixture is more costly since you would need a ballast for it to function properly but the lower energy cost will eventually offset this high initial outlay.

4) Compact Fluorescent

Compact fluorescent bulbs or CFLs are much like the ordinary fluorescent lamps but are designed in a smaller size. They also have ballast constructed into them but unlike the old fluorescent lamps, CFLs are quiet, instant-on and have warmer color tones. They also contain a little mercury so be careful not to break them. Also, keep in mind to recycle your CFLs when they burn out. These type of light bulbs are often used in homes and offices.

5) High Intensity Discharge Lamp

HID lamps are very efficient and require a ballast or starter just like the fluorescent lamp. They produce large volumes of light by striking an electrical arc across tungsten electrodes placed inside a specially designed inner glass tube filled with both gas and metals. The gas helps in the starting of the lamps whilst the metals produce the light as soon as they’re heated to a point of evaporation.

These lamps have a few distinct varieties. The high-pressure sodium lamp, mercury vapor lamp, self ballasts mercury lamp, and metal halide lamp are all considered as high intensity discharge lamps. These types of lamps are used in large public areas, outdoor activity areas, gymnasiums, parking lots, roadways, and pathways where high levels of light are required.

6) Low Pressure Sodium

Low-pressure sodium lamps are the most energy efficient lights available in the market today. They need a ballast to operate, just like fluorescent lamps, and have a warm up time for its lamp to reach full brightness. They emit a yellow light so they are commonly used in areas such as highways, parking lots, pathways, and roadways where color rendition is not important but energy efficiency is.

7) Light Emitting Diode (LED)

The light emitting diode or LED is an extremely energy-efficient and long-lasting lighting technology. These bulbs have no filament and so they’re more ideal for under-counter task lighting as they provide directional light only.  They are now slowly becoming more common in homes and restaurants as new models of LEDs are being introduced in the market.



Published on  August 17th, 2013