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Are Commercial LED Replacements Ready for Prime Time?


There are increasing numbers of LED replacement products for T8 fluorescent lamps, which are widely used in retail and commercial buildings, but the US Department of Energy is warning that many of these do not yet offer comparable performance and light output versus what is purchasing cialis with next day delivery supplied by using fluorescent lamps. Just because they are called replacements does not mean they are going to provide a similar level of performance.

Many LED replacement lamps are highly directional, with the LEDs only emitting light in one direction. However, fluorescent light fixtures are often designed with incorporated reflectors that utilize more of the light emitted from fluorescent tubes. If the replacement lamps do not project any light onto the reflector, the overall effectiveness of the fixture may be reduced. To avoid consumer and end-user dissatisfaction, LED replacement bulbs should be carefully considered.

The summary (PDF) from the DOE is fairly stark:

LED linear replacement lamps available today do not compete with linear fluorescent lamps on the basis of light output, color quality, distribution, lumen maintenance, or cost-effectiveness. DOE does not recommend replacing linear fluorescent lamps with LED linear replacements.
We would suggest that there are certainly applications where LED replacements may be useful and the energy savings may be more desirable. A DOE official noted that "they can be a reasonable option in locations where fluorescent doesn’t work well." But this should be an informed decision, and there should be an awareness of what the tradeoffs will be and what light performance can be expected.

We here at EcoGeek are definitely proponents of LED lighting, and we regularly follow the developments in the industry. In the past few years, LED lighting has grown from a rare, specialty niche item to a product that is starting to be regularly stocked on levitra 100 mg big box retail store shelves. But, while we readily encourage everyone to adopt more energy efficient measures like using LED lighting, we certainly don't want to suggest that you need to take a performance hit in order to be more efficient. CFLs got an early bad reputation because some had poor color. LEDs are going to become a significant part of levitra soft generic the lighting market in time. But we don't want to see a lot of people opposing them due to an early bad experience with inappropriate use of LEDs.

Links: USDOE LED Performance (PDF) and LED Replacement (PDF)

via: Green Savings Network

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Comments (17)Add Comment
Cree Social Media Gal
written by Ginny, August 19, 2010
Thanks for this article, Philip. You're observations are correct: We definitely don't want folks to get an unfavorable impression of LED lighting based on a bad experience. Unfortunately, there are LED lighting products on the market that don't perform well and it's a shame that one encounter with such product can taint someone's entire opinion of the technology. At Cree, we work hard to educate the public about the on line pharmacy technology so they can make informed decisions when they go shopping for LED lighting.
written by Julie Cobb, August 27, 2010
We tried LED lights in our office and they did not work well, and effected the productivity. We switched back to fluorescent and saved energy in other ways. But it was a trade-off. We are waiting for better technology to price check 50 mg viagra come out concerning T8s.
written by Julie Cobb, August 27, 2010
We tried LED T8s and they flickered too much. We had to switch back to regular fluorescents and save energy in other ways. We are waiting for better technology to come out concerning T8s and also working in the dark. smilies/wink.gif
still standing behind fluorescents, eh?
written by Paul D., August 27, 2010
Julie, if your LED lights "flickered", you probably failed to remove the ballast! LEDs don't flicker at all. Fluorescents operate on hertz cycles, while LEDs are solid state.
But don't take my word for it:
It's really sad how many people just can't/won't let go of the awful era of fluorescent lighting. The only light WORSE than a fluorescent tube, is a CFL.

We're using LED tubes and experienced a major positive impact on productivity along with less issues relative to eye strain, headache, etc..
As far as the article goes, right now LEDs are actually the solution to overbright areas, which are virtually everywhere fluorescents can be found.
Our offices are now quieter, cooler, much more energy efficient (by approx. 60% lighting cost)... and since the lighting is a bit softer amd more natural in color, we no longer feel like we're sitting in a K-Mart for 8 hours a day!
We've actually reduced 4-tube flo troffers down to 2 LED tubes and found THAT is the preferred retrofit (or should I say "massive upgrade?").
We will NEVER go back to fluorescents... ever, ever, ever!
to Julie Cobb
written by Arthur Corbin, August 27, 2010
Julie - What is the it you are waiting for in T8 lamp technology?
T8 efficiency is at very high levels (over 90 LPW).
Control systems can manage the interplay between available daylight and T8 systems output in a myriad of cialis cheapest price ways.
Fixtures are available for an infinite number of uses.
Lumens per watt is astonishing to someone who entered the lighting profession when T12 lamps and magnetic ballasts were the standard.
Task lighting is now better understood and many energy efficient choices are available.
Finally, there is a growing body of research on human vision and canada cialis online productivity that is helping guide new lighting solutions.
What T8 product or capability are you looking for?
written by Rob, August 27, 2010
Like Paul we too have replaced office lighting FLO's with LED tubes and with same results we became a manufacturs rep for the state of Alaska. With .39 cents per kwh here in Nome the retrofiting of every type of lighting to wow look it generic form of cialis LED's makes the best ROI. There is the right kind of LED bulb or fixture otu there you just need to deal with the right kind of people.
written by bubba, August 28, 2010
sounds like the DOE has been paid off by Phillips like in Europe
LED bulbs . . .
written by Venson Thomas, August 28, 2010
I'm a private individual who's for some time been enthused about energy-saving AND utility-cost sparing LED lighting. I admit the order cialis canada expense for initial purchases has proved daunting. Thus, I have hesitated buying.

However, my biggest problem is that vendors are failing to provide clear, plain-English explanations as to the equivalent output of viagra sales online these devices. I hate math and all I want to know is what and which device equals the light of a 20, 40, 60 or 75 watt incandescent bulb so I can buy it with a clear understanding of what I'm getting.

I can live without 1,200 watt vacuums and energy overkill in regard to household lighting. I just feel that estimation of what you're about to buy should be made easier and that that would help move us forward more quickly.
I enjoy mine
written by wtf, August 29, 2010
I enjoy my LED lights. I bought my first one from Wal-mart, a $9 7watt uni-dirctional bulb thing. I experimented with it until I found the correct use. Hanging from the celling with a white dome class cover, just like the more expensive LED's with the little dome. The linear LED requires the same concept. The exploration in light diffusion from your fluorescent mount with different covers.
written by Bob Smith, August 30, 2010
As a lighting professional with a degree in optical engineering, and someone who works on the forefront of new lighting technologies, I can safely say that LED's are currently not the silver bullet for lighting. That is not to say that there are great products out there for outdoor, landscape, or accent lighting. Cree does make a great recessed can retrofit for residential which replaces 65W BR incandescent lamps. But that is a far cry from replacing a 40,000 hour, 90LPW, 88 CRI fluorescent lamp. By comparison, LED tubes typically might last 40,000-50,000 hours, are 65-70 LPW, and have about a 65CRI. The claims you see of 100PLW are typically 5000-6000 kelvin which is just not a usable color temp for office lighting. And at $50-60 a tube your payback period is downright crazy. Does that mean I believe LED's will never get there? Of course not, it may be another 2 or 3 years. For anyone to say that the DOE is being unfair in their assessment is not looking at this objectively. Unlike a lot of things, lighting is a science (even CRI) and its hard to argue with the data.
Downright RIDICULOUS, Bob!
written by Dan. L, August 30, 2010
"As a lighting professional..."
Why in the world would you still even attempt to skew the look there rx online viagra data (40,000 hours for flo lights), are you kidding?)It's AMAZING that only YOUR fluorescent lights last 10 years @12 hours per day, because nobody else's do.But who really cares how long they last, because fluorescent lighting, in a word, sucks.
Why can some people and the DOE not understand the simple function and ambiance of lighting, but only the output numbers? There's a very good reason that dimmers exist, btw.
The DOE report harps on the one and cheap cialis 20 mg 60 pills only "negative" of LED lighting, and it still reads like a report from the 1980s.
Why not just place a 1200W metal halide high bay above every desk, those are available and can deliver even 110 LPW for bragging rights!
Does one absolutely need 90 LPW anyhow? When LED tubes reach that level, we would use lower wattage to maintain a more pleasurable working environment. LED tubes are already just right, right now.
We don't need 8 fluorescent tubes above every desk.
Hell, my LCD monitor provides almost enough light for my desk. One supplemental LED tube fills it in and it's absolutely perfect!
It's like Paul said above - most offices are way too "overbright."
We prefer a 15W LED tube over a 32W Flo tube (the avg. flo tubes consumption is closer to 38W due to the ballast headroom consumption).
Our ROI is 2 years, which is fine, considering we're not buying and dumping mercury, no more UV, we're running cooler and quieter with no hum or buzz.
Also, I've worked photography under LED lighting and there is NO COMPARISON to the genuine consistency of light and color temperature.
May I insert a sales plug please?
Because I have to tell you that these guys sell the best LED tube I've ever encountered:
We installed our first over 28 months ago and have continued to phase them in (as finances allow).
And btw, I truly believe that the 5000-6000K color temp will ABSOLUTELY become the new standard, it is much more natural -- looks like sunlight by day, and LED streetlights look more like moonlight -- no more of the awful yellow (2600K), or hazy pink we grew up with!
Fluorescent lighting of any kind is not even a consideration for us anymore!
Who is the Manufacturer?
written by Mike Wapner, August 30, 2010
Paul, Rob -
Who is the manufacturer of these awesome LED tubes? DOE bases its conclusions on tests of what they feel are representative products. Not being a conspiracy theory kind of guy, I believe DOE is presenting the results of what they tested. There is a lot of LED garbage in the market. If you have found specific products that perform that much better, please let us all know so that we can spread the word!
written by April, August 30, 2010
LED output and cialis no prescription wattage figures are averages of two LED T8 replacement lamps tested in Jun 2009.

As a retailer of LED lighting, I can tell you that the products coming out now are much better than what was available just a year ago. I'm not sure why this report is even being mentioned now considering it is over a year old. Don't be discouraged, LEDtronics, Enlux and CAO are all making quality LED T8 products that are here now or will be available soon. Price is still considerably higher than fluorescent, but for high-use applications, such as egress lighting, LED is an economical choice.
Here's to waiting....
written by Alex Vidal, September 15, 2010
Thanks for re-posting this here and linking back to the Green Savings Network. LED sure has a long way to go before it can make sense in all aspects, but here’s to hoping!

Have you guys seen the viagra side effects T5 Retrofit Kit though? Would be interested in hearing your thoughts!

Thanks smilies/smiley.gif
written by TBaer, October 11, 2011
How come the only people parading LED's advantages over T8 are people trying to sell LEDs? Doesn't that seema little suspicious? I don't read anything good or great about LED T8s from any lighting professionals anywhere. It's because LEDs are by far inferior right now. The CRI is lower, the lumen maintenance abysmal, the upfront cost extraordinary, and the ROI is overstated. Websites proclaiming LED's advantages use dubious math at best. For instance 10,000 hour T8 life, ballast cost, replacement cycle...all the numbers I see try to viagra generic usa paint T8 as something it isn't. And what happens to your LED ROI when you have a couple premature failures? How does a $60 lamp replacement eat into any supposed savings you may have had? It's not good. By my math, LED never has an ROI over T8 under normal operating conditions, even if you don't factor in any light loss. In short, we're waiting for the tech guys with their big noggins to make LED better.

I appreciate what the first poster said, Cree is doing good things. When we see a big breakthrough with LEDs I got my money on Cree being the folks to find it. For the moment there's nothing a 25/28/32/ watt T8 with the proper ballast factor can't do.
written by Q, August 29, 2012
While I definitely see the many benefits to switching lighting over to LED, I don't know that the DOE not supporting it at this time is due to conspiracy or payoffs. Personally, I believe that the lower lighting levels are likely to blame of dose viagra the lack of current support. For instance, if the DOE recommended a switch to LED and then there were safety or eyestrain issues with the lower lumens produced by LED lighting, they could catch the mail order cialis blame for recommending the switch. Like most government agencies their lack of support for the current LED replacement technologies is probably just a way they are attempting to buy levitra 50 mg limit their liability as a government department.

As they say, "no news is good news," and most government departments would prefer to not be front and center to blame for issues caused by their recommendations.

Just my two cents. :-)
CXA2011 LED 45W warm white 3000 lumens
written by Adrian Andronache, Romania, October 13, 2012
Please check out the Cree CXA2011, i bought one 8 month ago and after that immediately i bought another 5 and another 5. Is simply amazing: around 18 dollars the LED, have 45W and output is from 2500 lumens in warm white (2700-3000K) to 3500 lumens at 4000K (equivalent with 250W incandescent light up to 250W halogen light); disadvantages: need a special power supply and a heatsink with a fan. A processor heatsink is ok; i did my own power supply, protected and works fine. Is the cheapest LED on the market lumens per dollar and is CREE (really long lifespan, up to 200000 hours if dimmed at half power, and probably 50-80000 hours at fullpower with the heatsink keep it cool at approx 45 degrees C.

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