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How to Work Out Which LED GU10 is Right to Replace CFLs or Older Halogens

You probably already know that switching from older halogens or even newer CFLs to LED GU10s can reduce your lighting costs significantly, and make your home safer, too. What you may not know is how to choose the right gu10 to replace older style bulbs.

Switching to LED GU10s

Let’s start with what you DON’T need to think about… that’s power and heat. LED bulbs use less power - and lose less power - than both halogens and CFLs, so no matter what type of spotlights you already have, your existing fixtures will be able to accommodate LEDs (from a power and heat perspective) without risking any damage to the fitting.

You also won’t need to worry about the connection itself. GU10 doesn’t refer to a particular kind of bulb; it’s the actual lamp base. And so any GU10 bulb - whether it’s halogen, CFL, or LED - will be able to be plugged in to a GU10 fixture. However, there is one aspect to take into consideration with CFLs: bulb form. We’ll discuss this more later.
So, moving onto some aspects that you will need to think about…


Back in the days of incandescents, most people had a good idea of what a bulb’s Wattage meant, and how to choose the correct brightness. Halogens changed things a little. Then CFLs changed things a lot. And now, LEDs are changing things again.

A 60W incandescent bulb would be roughly equivalent to a:
45W halogen

A 100W incandescent bulb would be roughly equivalent to a:
70W halogen

Perhaps a better measure of which bulb you’ll need would be the ‘lumen’ rating. Lumen is a measure of a bulb’s brightness, regardless of which technology it uses or how much power it consumes. This can help you to make the best decision.

Form Factor

GU10 is a lamp base standard, like the B22 connector or bayonet connector that’s used for most household bulbs. The rest of the bulb, though, can be almost any shape. While this doesn't matter for standard bulbs in table lamps or overhead lights, GU10 bulbs are sometimes used in recessed fittings, where the entire bulb is hidden away inside the fitting.

And so, if you are switching from halogen GU10 bulbs to LED, a standard length LED GU10 bulb will suffice. However, if you are replacing GU10 CFL bulbs, you may need a long barrel LED GU10 bulb so that the new bulb doesn't sit too far back in the recess.


Incandescent and halogen bulbs were universally dimmable. Dimmable CFL bulbs were available, but less common, and dimmable LED bulbs are fast becoming the norm. If you want to use a dimmer with your new LED GU10 bulbs, it’s important to choose a GU10 that supports dimming, as not all of them do. This is another factor to think about.

And that’s really all there is to it. As LED GU10s retain the same shape and style as older halogen and CFL GU10s, making the switch to newer technology really is very simple.

Created by Gary Baker on 18th February, 2021


Gary Baker

Gary Baker

BLT Direct