Low Energy Lamps – Are they any Good?


Low energy lamps have been around for several years, they do save a lot of energy compared to the old faithful light bulb and therefore they help to reduce emissions, not to mention your electricity bill.

They are available in a lot of shapes to suit light fittings and different wattage outputs. A low energy lamp of 9 watts / 20 watts, gives an output approximately equal to  light bulbs of 40 watts and 100 watts respectively which is a big reduction in power usage and they have a much longer lifespan compared to an everyday light bulb, lasting up to six times as long. All the low energy lamps are available to suit different lamp holders, i.e. Bayonet cap (BC), Edison screw (ES), Miniature Edison screw (MES), etc.

For me personally the low energy lamp has a couple of faults, the first is when you switch on the lamp there can sometimes be a slight delay before it comes on, the second is from when the lamp is switched on it can take some time before it reaches its  full output, so if you want instant bright light such as in a storeroom they are not, in my opinion suitable unless you don’t mind waiting a short while.

That said they are improving all the time, but I suspect that by the time everyone is happy to use them, LED (Light Emitting Diodes) lamps will be in the shops which use negligible power, and as far as I am aware will last for even longer before a replacement is required. It was thought at one time that they would not be bright enough to be practical, but having installed LED lighting myself I would disagree, the LED down lighters and self adhesive LED strips that I have installed recently from Screwfix were more than adequate.

LED lamps are now available to replace low voltage halogen lamps and are much more practical as they give off less heat, which was always a problem with halogen lamps i.e. fire risk and reduced lamp life, they are being manufactured in a tube form to replace fluorescent tubes although I think this version is a little expensive at the moment but they do produce a good level of light.

There are LED floodlights for commercial and home installation available and again, although a little expensive, the running cost savings, especially on a commercial premises such as a loading yard are such that they should pay for themselves in quite a short time. Using low energy and LED lamps will no doubt help to reduce everyone’s carbon footprint, I like most people want to reduce my energy bills and fitting low energy lamps is definitely going to help.