LED Watt Conversion & Light Replacement Guide

 

Compare all light types, wattage, and specs in order to accurately upgrade your lighting.

The current solid-state lighting market is very dynamic with many exciting and innovative improvements, however, outdated and low quality technology is abundant at various pricing levels.  It is very important to pay attention to the efficacy and lumen output when upgrading to LED lighting, in addition to the LED chip manufacturer.  Investing in name brand LED chips will ensure your LED lamp lasts the listed lifespan and you realize the expected energy savings.

NOTE:  Many LEDs focus their light output to a specific beam angle (rather than 360 degrees), often times making it difficult to strictly compare the lumen specs of LED lighting to traditional incandescent and fluorescent lighting (which emit light in 360 degrees).

POOR – AVERAGE – GOOD

                                                                                                                                                                         

Incandescent
/
Halogens

Mercury Vapor

Metal  Halide 

High
Pressure
Sodium

Compact
Fluorescent
(CFLs)

Light
Emitting Diodes
(LEDs)

Efficacy:
15-25 Lm/W
Efficacy:
30-60 Lm/W
 Efficacy:
80-105 Lm/W
Efficacy:
70-110 Lm/W
Efficacy:
40-70 Lm/W
Efficacy:
60-140 Lm/W
CRI:
98-100
CRI:
40-50
CRI:
60-70
CRI:
20-30
CRI:
60-90
CRI:
70-95
Lifespan:
3,000 hours
Lifespan:
15,000 hours
Lifespan:
10,000 hours
Lifespan:
15,000 hours
Lifespan:
15,000 hours
Lifespan:
40,000 hours
– WATTAGE COMPARISON TABLE –
40 – 60 15-25 5-15 5-15 12-15 5-8
60 – 75 25-35 15-25 15-25 15-18 7-10
75 – 100 35-45 20-35 20-35 18-23 10-15
100-150 50-60 25-40 25-40 23-35 15-20
150-200 70-85 35-45 35-45 30-45 20-25
200-250 90-110 40-55 40-55 45-60 25-30
Incandescent
/
Halogens
Mercury Vapor Metal  Halide High
Pressure
Sodium
Compact
Fluorescent
(CFLs)
Light
Emitting Diodes
(LEDs)

* All numbers listed above are averages or ranges and presented as a general guideline.  Actual specifications will differ for each specific light and manufacturer.  Review your product specifications for a more accurate conversion.

 

Top Rated LED Bulbs
    TCP Elite R20 – 8 Watt – 50 Watt Equal
    XLEDIA D75N – Omni-Directional A19 – 11 Watt – 1050 Lumen – Cool White (5000K) – 75 Watt Equal
    Sylvania ULTRA RT6 LED Recessed Downlight Kit
    SAMSUNG L-Tube 4 Foot Integral LED T12 & T8 Replacement Lamp
    X-Tactical TMS Series LED Aluminum Flashlight – 160 Lumens
    XLEDIA X90N – A19 – 13 Watt – 1300 Lumens – Cool White (5000K) – 90 Watt Equal
    ILP 48″ 80 Watt LE

As the new energy-efficient light bulbs have been introduced on the market so too have new lighting measurements that go with them. For instance, what we’ve come to think of as a standard “60-watt” incandescent light bulb is now 10 to 15 watts for an LED or CFL light bulb.
The reason for this discrepancy is wattage tells you how much energy a bulb uses. And since the new LED and CFL light bulbs use much less energy, their wattage is much lower.
So “wattage” is no longer an applicable word to define how bright a light bulb is. Instead of using the term “watts” use the term lumens when you want to define how bright a bulb is.
Lumens measures brightness. More lumens means brighter light. For example, a standard 60-watt incandescent bulb produces about 800 lumens of light. By comparison, an LED bulb produces that same 800 lumens using less than 15 watts.
Here is a chart from ENERGY STAR that converts the number of watts for an incandescent light bulb to the number of watts in an LED or CFL light bulb as well as the amount of lumens produced.
lumens watts equiivalents incandescent to LED or CFL
Here are some guidelines for choosing bulbs that are equivalent in light output to the familiar standard incandescent bulbs :
    To replace a 100-watt incandescent bulb, choose a bulb that gives you 1,600 lumens.
    To replace a 75-watt incandescent bulb, choose a bulb that gives you 1,100 lumens.
    To replace a 60-watt incandescent bulb, choose a bulb that gives you 800 lumens.
    To replace a 40-watt incandescent bulb, choose a bulb that gives you 450 lumens.

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Comparison Chart
 LED Lights vs. Incandescent Light Bulbs vs. CFLs

 

Energy Efficiency
& Energy Costs


Light Emitting Diode Buulb
Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)


Incandescent bulb
Incandescent
Light Bulbs


Compact Fluorescent
Compact Fluorescents (CFLs)

Life Span (average)

 50,000 hours

 1,200 hours

8,000 hours

Watts of electricity used
(equivalent to 60 watt bulb). 

LEDs use less power (watts) per unit of light generated (lumens).  LEDs help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and lower electric bills

6 – 8 watts

60 watts

13-15 watts

Kilo-watts of Electricity used   
(30 Incandescent Bulbs per year equivalent) 

329 KWh/yr.

3285 KWh/yr.

767 KWh/yr.

Annual Operating Cost   
(30 Incandescent Bulbs per year equivalent) 

$32.85/year

$328.59/year

$76.65/year

Environmental 
Impact

Light Emitting Diode Buulb
Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)


Incandescent bulb
Incandescent
Light Bulbs


compact fluorescent bulb
Compact Fluorescents (CFLs)

Contains the TOXIC Mercury 

No

No

Yes – Mercury is very toxic to your health and the environment

RoHS Compliant

Yes

Yes

No – contains 1mg-5mg of Mercury and is a major risk to the environment

Carbon Dioxide Emissions  
(30 bulbs per year)

Lower energy consumption decreases: CO2 emissions, sulfur oxide, and high-level nuclear waste. 

451 pounds/year

4500 pounds/year

1051 pounds/year

Important Facts


Light Emitting Diode Buulb
Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)


Incandescent bulb
Incandescent
Light Bulbs


Compact Fluorescent
Compact Fluorescents (CFLs)

Sensitivity to low temperatures

None

Some

Yes – may not work under negative 10 degrees Fahrenheit or over 120 degrees Fahrenheit

Sensitive to humidity

No

Some

Yes

On/off Cycling   
Switching a CFL on/off quickly, in a closet for instance, may decrease the lifespan of the bulb.

No Effect

Some

Yes  – can reduce lifespan drastically

Turns on instantly

Yes

Yes

No – takes time to warm up

Durability

Very Durable – LEDs can handle jarring and bumping

Not Very Durable – glass or filament can break easily

Not Very Durable – glass can break easily

Heat Emitted

3.4 btu’s/hour

85 btu’s/hour

30 btu’s/hour

Failure Modes 

Not typical

Some

Yes – may catch on fire, smoke, or omit an odor

Light Output


Light Emitting Diode Buulb
Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)


Incandescent bulb
Incandescent
Light Bulbs


Compact Fluorescent
Compact Fluorescents (CFLs)

Lumens

Watts

Watts

Watts

450

4-5

40

9-13

800

6-8

60

13-15

1,100

9-13

75

18-25

1,600

16-20

100

23-30

2,600

25-28

150

30-55

 

 

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LED light bulbs will eventually be what we use to replace incandescent bulbs – CFLs are a temporary solution to energy-efficient lighting. The reason LEDs have not yet displaced CFLs from the market are twofold: the first generation LED bulbs had a narrow and focused light beam, and the cost of the LED bulbs was too high.

Recent developments in LED technology, however, have been addressing these issues. LEDs have been ‘clustered’ to provide more light, and mounted within diffuser lenses which spread the light across a wider area. And advancements in manufacturing technology have driven the prices down to a level where LED bulbs are more cost-effective than CFLs or incandescent bulbs. This trend is continuing, with LED bulbs being designed for more applications while the prices are going down over time.

The ‘sticker shock’ of the new LEDs remains a deterrent to their widespread acceptance by consumers. The following comparison charts illustrate the value of the latest LED bulbs when compared with CFLs and incandescents for overall efficiency as well as cost-effectiveness.

 
Cost Comparison between LEDs, CFLs and Incandescent light bulbs

  LED CFL Incandescent
Light bulb projected lifespan
50,000 hours
10,000 hours
1,200 hours
Watts per bulb (equiv. 60 watts)
10
14
60
Cost per bulb
$35.95
$3.95
$1.25
KWh of electricity used over
50,000 hours
500
700
3000
Cost of electricity (@ 0.10per KWh)
$50
$70
$300
Bulbs needed for 50k hours of use
1
5
42
Equivalent 50k hours bulb expense
$35.95
$19.75
$52.50
Total cost for 50k hours
$85.75
$89.75
$352.50
Energy Savings over 50,000 hours, assuming 25 bulbs per household:
Total cost for 25 bulbs
$2143.75
$2243.75
$8812.50
Savings to household by switching
from incandescents
$6668.75
$6568.75
0

Notes:
– Cost of electricity will vary. The figures used above are for comparison only, and are not exact. Residential energy costs among the various states range from 28.53 cents (Hawaii) to 6.34 cents (Idaho) per KWH.
– The cost per bulb for LEDs may vary. We used the figure of $35.95 (for a 60 watt equivalent LED bulb) as an average among lighting retailers.

Estimates of bulb lifespan are projected, since it would take about 6 years of continuous lighting to test. Some manufacturers claim the new LED bulbs will last up to 25 years under normal household use, but this is not proven.
– Bulb breakage and bulb replacement costs have not been factored into this comparison chart. Incandescent bulbs and CFL bulbs are more easily broken than LEDs, which increases their cost of use.
– Most LEDs come with a minimum 2-year guarantee. Any defective LED bulb will usually fail within this time.

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