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LED, the Future of Light Bulbs + Win a $50 The Home Depot GC!

by Tara Kuczykowski on January 12, 2011 · 388 comments


I'm sure you've all heard that one of the ways you can reduce your energy bill is by replacing your incandescent light bulbs with CFL bulbs, but if you're like me, you're probably also worried about the possible risks associated with doing so. CFL bulbs contain mercury, a neurotoxin that can cause kidney and brain damage, turning a minor mess of broken glass into a HazMat situation.

Because of this, we've been very hesitant to use CFL bulbs in our household, so I was very intrigued when The Home Depot contacted me about their new line of LED light bulbs. LED bulbs actually supply just as much light as traditional incandescent bulbs but use far less electricity -- a whopping 85 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs and up to 50 percent less energy than CFL bulbs.

I was also amazed to learn that LED bulbs an extremely long life expectancy that, 100 times longer than incandescent bulbs! Each bulb can last up to 100,000 hours or 11.42 years! I know we have several fixtures that are a real hassle to change, so my husband would be thrilled if he only had to do so every ten years or so.

More interesting LED facts:

  • Replacing incandescent bulbs with energy-saving lighting options, such as LED lights, is a simple way to reduce your energy bills.
  • Replacing standard light bulbs with energy efficient LED bulbs will bring you immediate savings on your electricity bill.
  • In fact, innovative LED technology uses up to 85 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs, without sacrificing lighting quality.
  • LED bulbs supply just as much light as your old bulbs but use far less electricity. In fact, the innovative technology uses up to 85 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs, and up to 50 percent less energy than CFL bulbs.
  • LED bulbs also have an exceptionally long life expectancy that is 100 times longer than incandescent bulbs. Each bulb can last up to 100,000 hours, or 11.42 years.

Sounds great, huh? So you're probably wondering what's the catch. The bad news is this great new technology comes with a price tag that's significantly higher than we're used to paying for incandescent bulbs. Expect to pay about $17.97 for an LED bulb that's a 40W equivalent.

However, the good news is that the price is rapidly coming down. In fact, just two years ago, a 60-watt equivalent cost $90 and a 100-watt dimmable bulb went for $360. Wow!

New legislation is requiring that most incandescent bulb production be discontinued by 2014, so it's definitely important to start looking at other options. While the initial investment may seem steep, it's important to consider the savings in energy coupled with the longevity of LED bulbs.

Next week I'll take you shopping with me at my local Home Depot to purchase LED lighting for several fixtures in our house. But in the meantime, you can win a $50 gift card to The Home Depot!

To enter: Just check out the LED lighting page on HomeDepot.com and tell me one cool fact you learned about LED bulbs. Would you purchase LED light bulbs? Have you already started using LED light bulbs in your household?

This giveaway will close at 2:00pm EST on 1/13/11.

The Home Depot works with bloggers such as myself to conduct product reviews. They do not tell bloggers what to say about their products or how to say it. THD fundamentally believes that people should be free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. The Home Depot often provides product – free of charge – to bloggers for review as they did for this post. The Home Depot’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.

{ 388 comments }

1 Sue A January 12, 2011 at 11:03 pm

They do not contain any mercury and are 10% more effective than flourescent bulbs.

2 Becca Webb January 12, 2011 at 11:04 pm

We are currently using fluorescent bulbs. But I learned that LED bulbs are 10% more efficient that fluorescent. We may start switching over to these as the price drops some!

3 amy January 12, 2011 at 11:04 pm

Like the fact that the LED lightbulbs last up to 100,000 hours. I would like to buy them but not until the price came down its way out of my budget for now.

4 Kathy January 12, 2011 at 11:20 pm

LED lights have an instant re-strike and are fully dimmable with no humming or buzzing! It looks as if the color will be better than cfl's as well... :)

5 Laura S. January 12, 2011 at 11:21 pm

LED bulbs use 85% less energy and do not put out heat... I will definitely switch to these bulbs once they're affordable!

6 Amy Childs January 12, 2011 at 11:23 pm

you wouldnt have to change the lightbulb for a long long long time like when your kid goes to college

7 Curt K January 12, 2011 at 11:39 pm

The lifetime is advertised as being up to 100 times longer than incandescent. I have tried several versions and know that cheap ones often fail much earlier than incandescent.
Also, LED bulbs come in flood and other forms, but cannot handle cold weather well. Using them outside can have mixed results. The federal gov't will likely be outlawing incandescent bulbs in everything but regrigerators and freezers... there is no good alternative for the cold environments yet!

8 Cindy Montrief January 12, 2011 at 11:48 pm

the long life of the bulbs is great. don't use them yet but will get some for sure.

9 jennifer e January 13, 2011 at 12:00 am

we have started exchanging all our christmas lights with LED lights, they're not as hot & last FOREVER!!! WOW, they come in all kinds of designs now!!! TOO COOL!!

10 Kim Shaver January 13, 2011 at 12:02 am

We started switching out our light bulbs to LED last year. Our main goal was to save money. There has been a small decrease on our electric bill.

11 May January 13, 2011 at 12:11 am

The fact that LED bulbs use 85% less energy and last up to 20 years longer than incandescent bulbs will get me to switch to LED. Our kitchen light just went dead, good timing to change to LED!

12 Joel January 13, 2011 at 12:13 am

Learned about the variety of form factors available--glad to see it, as I've had a hard time finding much of *anything* in LED till now.

13 May January 13, 2011 at 12:15 am

The fact that LED bulbs use 85% less energy and last up to 20 years longer than incandescent bulbs will get me to switch to LED. Our kictchen light just went dead, good timing to change to LED.

14 Kris January 13, 2011 at 12:59 am

I am amazed that they use 85% less energy and last 20 years longer than old bulbs... simply amazing.

15 M J Knudsen January 13, 2011 at 1:13 am

emits light from a chip, they produce minimal heat

16 Lakeicia January 13, 2011 at 1:32 am

I am very familiar with LED lights and have been using them for about a year. I love them and my light bill has decreased significantly, so much so that I use the program that allows you to pay the same each month and it has had to be decreased twice, this last time almost $40 (from 120 to 82) due to the decrease in electricity we now use. Woo Hoo!

17 lookintosave January 13, 2011 at 1:57 am

"LED lights have an instant re-strike and are fully dimmable with no humming or buzzing."

This is one thing that annoys me about the light bulbs we have. They buzz when dimmed. We haven't used LED light bulbs yet. But, I would like to try them out.

18 Allison January 13, 2011 at 2:08 am

LED Stands for "Light-Emitting Diode." I had no idea! I have never purchased LED's before, but would definitely consider it if the price isn't too prohibitive!

19 Sybilla January 13, 2011 at 2:09 am

I learned that they now have dimmable LEDs. We made the mistake of putting a nondimmable LED into one of our fixtures and it caused some problems with the other electronics in our house. So, make sure you only put dimmable LEDs in your dimmable fixtures.

20 Amy E. January 13, 2011 at 2:42 am

I love the fact that LED bulbs don't get hot like regular bulbs!

21 Lisa S. January 13, 2011 at 2:56 am

I learned that they LED's don't have any mercury or other toxic materials in them. I had no idea that regular lightbulbs HAD mercury in them! I have changed to Halogens throughout my home when I bought it in '03 & only have 1 flourescent bulb light fixture in my laundry room. I see that they are getting rid of the lightbulbs in certain stores in my area. I want to start buying LEDs because like it said in the article, buy now & have to replace in at least 20 yrs.!

22 Tamah Collier January 13, 2011 at 3:04 am

LED lights have an instant re-strike and are fully dimmable with no humming or buzzing. I like that they are quiet.

23 Christine January 13, 2011 at 3:47 am

Its interesting that it could possibly last up to 20 yrs or longer. I am curious to know if it is true since I have had to replace some of the CFL bulbs after a year or so...

24 Lynn January 13, 2011 at 4:22 am

I learned that LEDs last for 20 years - wow!

25 Lisa H January 13, 2011 at 4:24 am

One cool fact is they are non toxic. Not using them yet. Would love to start replacing CFL bulbs. However, it will be one at a time, due to price.

26 Linda C January 13, 2011 at 6:26 am

LED bulbs last up to 100,000 hours though I know we have had to replace some already so I wonder if this is really true.

27 Linda C January 13, 2011 at 6:29 am

They last 100,000 hours.

28 Karen January 13, 2011 at 6:42 am

I like how they are safer and save money by using less electricity.

29 jade1977 January 13, 2011 at 6:56 am

I learned that "LEDs do not contain glass, filaments, UV light, or mercury."

30 Kris January 13, 2011 at 7:00 am

I learned that there were led light bulbs. I had no idea! I knew there were the small ones, as in flashlights & Christmas lights, but not to replace incandescent!

31 TIM January 13, 2011 at 7:15 am

I learned that high efficiency and durability are the most pronounced benefits of using LED lights. I would buy them if the cost is not to great. We have not used any in our home.

32 Rebecca January 13, 2011 at 7:38 am

As a computer geek, I've known about LED's for a while. We use LED Christmas lights. However, I was surpised the other day when my husband came home w/ LED lights for our dining room. (The candle style) I am excited about these, but before we put them all over the house, I'll need something brighter than 60W equivalent! All the lightbulbs in our house are 100W minimum, some even 150. Hopefully that's next. I would pay a bit of a premium to get the CFL bulbs out of my house.

33 Robin January 13, 2011 at 8:03 am

I learned that most LED bulbs come with a warranty if the bulb malfunctions. I am interested in LED lighting, but I don't have any yet in my house.

34 Deborah January 13, 2011 at 8:13 am

85% less energy and last 20 years longer...SWEET!!

We have the CFL bulbs in our house and I am not a fan. I would love the try the LEDs but the price is holding me back.

35 Sharon January 13, 2011 at 8:13 am

It is good to know that LEDs has a high level of brightness and uses less power than the regular bulbs.
I also like the fact that LEDs last up to 100,000 hours which is 100 times longer than the regular bulbs.

36 Tana January 13, 2011 at 8:34 am

I learned that there IS an option to the hazmat CFL's (which I've refused to buy). I like that they don't get hot like regular bulbs, they're not very attractive, and also that they're still kinda expensive but are coming down in price.

37 Cady Sexton January 13, 2011 at 9:08 am

LED bulbs use 85% less energy and do not put out heat. My CFL bulbs to put out A LOT of heat! Fine in the winter but a huge drawback in the summer.

38 Beth Radesic January 13, 2011 at 9:13 am

I like that they last up to 100,000 hours-Wow!!

39 Michelle January 13, 2011 at 9:27 am

I cannot believe they can last for 20 years. Amazing! I have LED icicle lights outside for the holidays. They are so much brighter than the other lights.

40 Amanda January 13, 2011 at 9:32 am

LEDs don't contain any glass, filaments, UV light, or mercury, so they're safe for my family. We don't use them yet, but I will definitely make the switch as soon as the price comes down a little more!

41 jen January 13, 2011 at 9:38 am

Last 20 years!!

42 Maureen January 13, 2011 at 9:53 am

I knew LED bulbs last long, but didn't expect them to last from your infant's birth till they would go to college. Incredible!!!

43 Theresa January 13, 2011 at 9:54 am

LOVE the no mercury and that they last so much longer! I have been doing a little looking into them and if my local HD is now carrying them I will be shopping there soon!

Thanks for this great tip!

44 Tracy K. January 13, 2011 at 9:59 am

I'm impressed by the fact that they use so much less energy. I bought LED Christmas lights and they don't heat up at all. We always have a real tree and that fact kept my mind at ease this past holiday season!

45 Jamie January 13, 2011 at 10:19 am

This lights save energy and they seem to last longer to me. I will definitely buy more, I already have some that are being used in my house!

46 Lisa January 13, 2011 at 10:22 am

They use 85% less energy than incandescent bulbs and last up to 20 years!

47 ELOISE January 13, 2011 at 10:29 am

If you use a LED bulb in your nursery, chances are that you probably wouldn't need to change the bulb again until your child goes to college!!! That's amazing and awesome! I haven't used LED bulbs before but I will definitely start now!

48 CJ January 13, 2011 at 10:31 am

They reduce electricity bills and can last 11 years. I'd like to try them but wouldnt pay $17 per bulb at this time.

49 Karen January 13, 2011 at 10:32 am

LEDs do not contain glass, filaments, UV light, or mercury.

50 Audrey January 13, 2011 at 10:36 am

They are over 10% more efficient than CFL's. We have begun using LED lights in the house in the last year. My husband is addicted to them.

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