About the Halogen light bulb

Facts and Myth About The Halogen Downlight

Halogen bulbs are much less efficient than LED lights or compact fluorescent globes. Yet the down light myth is persistent. Learn real benefits and find resource to a clever add-on to make halogens safer.

The use of halogen globes for practically anything is a widely accepted practice. Among them the fixtures popularly called downlights that are used for true color rendering. Also, stylish track lighting is awailable where the tracks are wires actually. The low woltage in those wires makes them possible to run unconcealed.  But when you consider efficiency it's a different ball game. Cost (both bulb cost and operating cost), and operating heat become important factors when you compare them to other light bulbs.

Halogens have clear aesthetic benefits, but energy bulbs they are not quite.

Halogens -- Use them for Warm True Color Spots

If you already have them use them predominantly for warm spot and washer lighting.

But, keep your eyes peeled for good bright LED bulbs becoming very affordable. Already making there mark, my prediction is that LED bulbs will be your choice for most spotlighting once their price consolidate. Learn more about LED Bulbs here.

See how light color temperature affects usage

Replacing Halogens : the Myth

Halogens are the choice of the day for choosing low voltage lighting. And halogens are great in that they provide a very even and vibrant light. But they burn out without warning (very little fun there), and they too need regular replacement.

Halogen Efficiency Stinks

Take this as an example: A typical $10 50W halogen globe uses
around $30 worth of energy over its entire life of approximately 1,000 hours. Over that lifetime that used energy plus lamp costs will cost you around $11 per bulb. Not let's ompare that to another typical bulb, but this time take a compact fluorescent one. A $15 12W compact fluorescent will last about 3,000 hours and provide similar light at a lifetime cost of lamp plus energy of $15 dollars. Over the same lifespan that a halogen light bulb lasts ( whihc is 1,000 hours, remember) that's a cost of only $5 per resulting in a saving of 60%.

Compact fluorescents are not only much better energy saving bulbs they also cost at least 3 times less to run. 

The inefficiency of halogen downlights
make both fluorescents and LED downlight even more cost efficient.

True, halogen lights are low voltage lighting fixtures. But because their light is narrowly directed with a sharply defined edge you need too many of them to properly light a room. And with any halogens - not just spots - heat is also produced at the adaptor or transformer and that is a significant though somewhat hidden heat output.

The low voltage halogen down-light myth is persistent. But for room lighting you should consider compact fluorescent bulbs instead. They reliably last longer and cheaper to run. And because you need to use too many halogens for a decent lighting fluorescents will be even less overall wattage and produce much less heat. Learn more about Compact Fluorescent Bulbs here.

Replacement of halogens: handling

To add insult to injury, replacing a halogen bulb is a very delicate operation. You cannot smudge it with your fingertips. If you do the slight deposit of grease will burn from the too high heat resulting in the speedy loss of the bulb. Halogens, as the saying goes - are very delicate creatures.

Halogen light bulb in light therapy

The most exciting and interesting (at least for me) usage of halogen light bulbs and globes is for light therapy application. Halogen bulbs as part of a polar light therapy are known to treat some skin condition and promote tissue healing. We have such a device in the family and use it regularly.

Actually, in light of LED bulbs, washers and even compact fluorescent light bulbs outshining halogens for spot lighting - and in energy efficiency - therapy lighting might well be the cleverest way for using halogens on the long run.

Halogens are good for ...

Halogens are good and still recommended as warm bright spots, but LED bulbs are catching up fast.

Polarized halogen light is an exciting form of polar light therapy.

!!! Warning, halogens are hot and piercingly bright

Caution! Looking directly at bright halogen lighting for a prolonged period of time and from within a short distance may cause eye injury.

Related Articles, Resources:
Learn more about Compact Fluorescent Bulbs here

Learn more about LED bulbs here

This clever product for recessed lighting reduces need for drywall boxes that you would normally need to insulate the heat source.

Return to top

Back from Halogen Light Bulb to Home Lighting Shift

Home to LED Light Guide

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

what's new | about | add link | contact | search | LED faq

Published by fun-led-light.com

footer for halogen light bulb page