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Which Light Bulb is Right For You?

How do you go about choosing the right lighting option for your home? There are a number of ways in which to choose, but one of the easiest methods is simply to look at the pros and cons of each type of bulb. Each one, whether it is a CFL (compact fluorescent lamp), a traditional halogen light bulb or a more modern LED (light-emitting diode), has its own distinct advantages and disadvantages that will prove more functional in some homes and businesses more than others.

Steven Ellwood, Managing Director of BLT Direct, one of the UK’s premiere suppliers of lighting solutions for all domestic and commercial uses, says, “There are so many lighting options to choose from nowadays that people are becoming spoilt for choice. On the plus side, this means that they can choose the solution that is perfect for them, but on the down side, it often means plenty of research! The three main bulbs will satisfy the broadest range of consumer demands, and these are the three that are generally most relied-upon in the UK nowadays.”

CFLs are essentially fluorescent bulbs which have been compressed to look like a standard incandescent light bulb, which are ubiquitous in homes across the country. They use around the quarter of a power of these older bulbs, making them a good energy-saving light bulb solution for the majority of residences and even businesses. They are widely available in a vast range of fittings and brightness levels, and they typically last for around 8,000 hours. Their downsides include that they are sometimes slow to reach full brightness, taking a while to ‘warm up’, they may not function as well at lower temperatures, and they contain a minuscule amount of mercury, so they must be disposed of appropriately. Many parents don’t even like the idea of mercury in the house if they have small children, so they veer away from CFLs entirely, but if they are handled correctly they can prove a good, cost-effective, all-round lighting solution.

Halogens are the next popular choice. They are very similar to traditional incandescent bulbs in that they both have tungsten filaments within, but as stated in the name, halogen bulbs have halogen gas surrounding the filament in order to make them last longer. They have a similar light quality to incandescent bulbs but they don’t take any time to ‘warm up’; they are instantly bright at the flick of a switch. However, their lifespan is significantly shorter than its competitors, with only around 2,000 hours of illumination expected from this type of bulb.

LED light bulbs are the final option, and for many they are considered the Holy Grail of lighting solutions. They use semiconductor technology to create their light, and are a relatively new development compared with the others. Incredibly energy-efficient, and with claimed life spans of around 25,000 hours, there is not a light fitting that couldn’t be bettered by the introduction of an LED. They are slightly more expensive to buy than CFLs or halogen bulbs, and there is slightly less choice if you want a very bright bulb, but they pay back their initial cost in energy savings relatively quickly, and are available in a variety of colours and colour temperatures for maximum variety.

To find out more about energy-saving daylight light bulbs, and to order online, visit

About BLT Direct:  BLT Direct are an online supplier of lighting solutions.  They provide a wide range of lighting products, as well as light fittings and lamp disposal services, and are committed to offering energy efficient solutions to meet a wide range of home and business lighting needs.

Created by Steve Ellwood on 23rd August, 2013


Steve Ellwood

Steve Ellwood

Qualified as an Electrician, founder of BLT Direct