You don’t have to be a lighting expert to get the idea that a big sell of LEDs compared to their traditional counterparts is their relative myriad of benefits that come along with them and their new technology.
Its lower energy usage capabilities reap environmental benefits, its higher lifespan and weather resistance lowers total waste production – there are many reasons as to why LEDs are sensible, logical choice for consumers.
On top of this, LEDs subsequently save consumers – both household and businesses – hundreds in annual energy costs.
However, no product is flawless, no matter how much it has revolutionised its respective market. This is especially true for LEDs as they are still a fledgling technology compared to its counterparts in the market, so it is inevitable that imperfections and flaws pop up as the technology becomes more common.
If you’ve just invested in some LED lighting for your home or business, or if you’re yet to take the plunge and are exploring your options, you’re in the right place to understand some of the issues – rare as they may be – of LED lighting.
LED lights not working
LED lighting is a survivor, lasting around 25 times longer than traditional incandescent or halogen light bulbs. This averages out at around 50,000 hours or six years!
Now, before you invest in your LEDs thinking that you’ll get over half a decade out of them and they stop working out of nowhere, you may be wondering what all the fuss was about.
Well, because LEDs are so sophisticated and new, it can be difficult to pinpoint where the problem lies when it comes to finding the source of a faulty LED fixture.
Unlike traditional lighting that have components that literally burn out over time from overuse, LEDs have electronic parts that fade out or become obsolete over time or from faulty wiring.
High voltage is a common factor in faulty LEDs as they consume much less voltage compared to a home grid that it is attached to. And so, LEDs have drivers whose sole responsibility is converting power from AC to DC in order to ensure the correct operational voltage.
If you have LEDs that ‘burn out’ quickly, this might just be due to a sudden surge in voltage that hasn’t allowed the LEDs driver to adjust in time.
With all this in mind, it’s worth mentioning that LEDs, as mentioned earlier, are a relatively new technology despite their already revolutionary dent on the market. To this, accurately determining the lifespan of an LED in a real life scenario has not been entirely viable.
LEDs tested in market labs under the perfect conditions aren’t necessarily reflective of domestic or commercial contexts.
LED lights overheating
LEDs also have a major advantage over traditional light bulbs in that they are resistant to external forces like cold temps and heavy rainfall, making them a number one choice for any outdoor event or fixture, as well as commercial freezer units.
Despite this, letting LEDS overheat like any other piece of electronic equipment is a nail in its coffin, and so it’s always worth remembering that keeping your LEDs cooler rather than not is always the best way to maximising LED lifespan.
A common occurrence that showcases this is when putting surrounding bulbs close to each other, and this excess heat causes premature failure.
It’s also important to think about the location of installing an LED regarding other bulbs, but an LEDs positioning is also important to consider. If it’s placed upwards or downwards and left uncovered then any of the miniscule amounts of heat leaked from the LED will have space to release.
So, what if you want to position your LEDs in a sideways position? These are popular choices for kitchen fixtures where they are used to highlight countertops and create a welcoming atmosphere. However, these LED setups are likelier to be near a warm environment created by a stove, and in this case can be impacted over time.
LEDs not as bright as preferred
LEDs are much brighter than traditional lights, but this doesn’t mean they’re not susceptible to periods of dimming, and for several reasons.
Primarily, if LEDs are working within their requirements, it’s obvious that the LED won’t reach its maximum brightness. This is why it’s important to know the specifications of the equipment surrounding your LED so you know the exact power, voltage and current input. If these specs don’t match, the LEDs won’t operate as bright as possible, and might even burn out over time.
Similarly, if LEDs aren’t as bright as they once were, it may be that they’re a victim of having lived a little too long and the electronics inside begin to wear out, stopping it from producing the full quality of lights that it once could.
As mentioned though, you are probably going to be waiting for over five years before you see any sort of deterioration. A good way of getting an idea of how long your LED will last is by looking at its maintenance rating. If its rated as 60,000 hours at L80, the lumen output will drop to 80% of the original output after 60,000 hours.
And if you’re ready to take the step into the future of lighting, Contact Cube Lighting & Design here to see if you qualify for free LED lighting!
Want to keep reading? Check out our latest blog post here: How does your office lighting affect you?