As many of you now know, shopping for LED bulbs is much more difficult than looking for your traditional light bulbs. In the past we could just look for a 40, 60, 75 or 100 watt light bulb and be done. We can no longer use watts to define the light output. As LED light sources get more efficient the wattage consumed goes down while the lumen output goes up! Now, we have to pay attention to lumen outputs, lumens per watt, useful life ratings, L70 ratings, color temperature options and so on.
To make shopping for new LED technologies easier and more transparent the US Department of Energy introduced the Lighting Facts® program. The label is basically like a nutrition label for light bulbs. The label lets you know the most basic facts you need to know to make an informed decision on whether or not the LED bulb meets your needs.
Most LED's that come from reputable manufacturers have a LED Lighting Facts® Label. If they do not then they could be giving you erroneous information. So when shopping for products look for the label. AtlantaLightBulbs.com carries products from Philips, TCP & Halco Lighting Technologies. These manufacturers use the LED Lighting Facts® Label on a large portion of their product offering.
Below, we will go over the wording used on the labels and what it means to you. There are four versions of the LED Lighting Facts label.
- Current and required label metrics
- Current and required label metrics + Warranty
- Current and required label metrics + LED Lumen Maintenance
- Current and required label metrics + LED Lumen Maintenance + Warranty
Anatomy of the LED Lighting Facts® Label
- Measures light output. The higher the number, the more light is emitted.
- Reported as “Total Integrated Flux (Lumens)” on LM-79 test report.
- Measures energy required to light the product. The lower the wattage, the less energy used.
- Reported as “Input Power (Watts)” on LM-79 test report.
Lumens per Watt/Efficacy
- Measures efficiency. The higher the number, the more efficient the product.
- Reported as “Efficacy” on LM-79 test report.
- Industry standardized test procedure that measures performance qualities of LED luminaires and integral lamps.
- Allows for a true comparison of luminaires regardless of the light source.
LED Lumen Maintenance
- Listed as a percentage, this metric estimates the amount of light the LED light source is projected to emit at 25,000 hours at a given ambient test temperature, compared to its initial light output. This percentage is based on LM-80, in-situ performance, and TM-21 projections.
- Unique manufacturer’s model number for the product.
- Specific type of solid-state lighting fixture.
- The brand under which each product is available.
Color Rendering Index (CRI)
- Measures color accuracy. The higher the CRI rating, the better objects look under the light.
- Color rendition is the effect of the lamp’s light spectrum on the color appearance of objects.
Correlated Color Temperature (CCT)
- Measures light color. The color temperature is defined a bit more on our Color Temperature Scale Page
- “Cool” colors have higher Kelvin temperatures (3600–5500 K).
- “Warm” colors have lower color temperatures (2700–3500 K).
- If a label indicates that the product has a warranty, a URL with more information has been verified by the program and is available from the product summary.
The above information was gathered from US DOE website: http://www.lightingfacts.com/Library/Content/Label