The technology powering LED down lights has exponentially increased over 2013, lowering initial setup costs while increasing energy and cost efficiency. However, industry professionals can overlook a vital factor in deciding which LED light to select.
Most purchasers of LED down lights continue to consider only lumen output (or light emitted), beam angle, wattage and the option of dimmer functionality. An equally important element is whether the LED down light is Energy Star rated. LEDs with an Energy Star rating have met a stringent set of rigorous criteria and offer measurable benefits to a household:
Benefits of "Energy Star" rated lights
- They are equal or greater in brightness compared to CFL or halogen globes;
- Light output is constant over time, lasting a minimum of 35,000 hours;
- The colour quality is excellent, appearing clear and consistent over time;
- The LEDs are 20% to 30% more efficient than CFL/fluorescent lighting;
- The light comes on instantly when turned on;
- There is no flicker when dimmed;
- The off-state power draw is not to exceed 0.5W
Cost saving comparison -
According to a study done by Energy Rating Australia in 2010:
Mixed lighting type household
- 20 down lights - 34% were inefficient halogen down lights.
- 48W/light average.
- average household lighting spend: $645/yr.
- 20 down lights
- 12W/light average
- average household spend $160/year
- assuming the same conditions as the halogen lights
If a household were to replace standard efficiency LED down lights with the ultra-efficient Energy Star rated LED down lights a household would be able to save an additional 30% off their electric bill, bringing the cost to run 20 LED down lights to $110 per year, or $9 per month for all 20 lights! The cost savings alone should be enough for the average household to see the long term benefits of switching to the Energy Star rated LED down lights.
Compared to the average 48W halogen lights cited in the Energy Rating Australia study cited above, Energy Star rated LED down lights can save the average household nearly $6500 over the required 35,000 hour lifetime! Switching to Energy Star rated LED down lights today will save households money and energy. Consumers, and the environment, win.
Martec, a LED lighting company based out of Sydney, has an Energy Star Rated LED down light called the Genesis which has an expected lifetime of 35,000 hours with a lumen output of 900 and a beam angle of 100 degrees. If consumers were to run the Genesis 24 hours a day, 365 days a year nonstop until the LED began to dim, the Genesis would run for four years, creating savings on energy bills and lighting replacements. Based on the average eight hours that a household down light is on, the Genesis would last 12 years.