Is it just me, or has shopping for the right light bulb become rather confusing? For something that supposedly runs more energy efficient, the options and jargon on the box leave me scratching my head and spending way too much time (and energy) shopping for a bulb to light up my life, so to speak. Gone are the days of only having to choose what wattage is needed, now you have to consider light temperatures, watt conversions, volts and lumens.
After installing the light fixtures over the prep table, I set out to find an LED bulb that didn’t look LED. What I wanted was an Edison bulb that would look great behind the glass of the light fixtures, compliment the age of the light fixture, and produce enough light for me to see the food I was preparing. Trying to save energy and keep costs down, going the LED route seemed like the right thing to do.
When I got to the store to buy said bulbs, I found myself just standing there, utterly confused. There before me were dozens and dozens of choices, along with light boxes with colored buttons to press to help you choose the right bulb temperature for your need. And, on each box was the word lumens, bulging out in bold print. Clearly lumens are an important factor to consider when buying a light bulb.
I pulled out my phone and dove in to Google, trying to find out what the heck a lumen is. By definition, a lumen is a basic unit for measuring brightness of light.
A-ha. Got it.
Makes sense. Luminous is another word for radiance, so of course lumens would have something to do with light brightness. All I wanted was to go in, buy some LED Edison light bulbs, 60 watts each, go home and screw them in to the light fixtures. Instead, I was looking up definitions and now lumen / watt conversions and measuring light temperatures.
I left the store empty handed.
Back at it at home, I diverted my energy to Amazon and 45 minutes later, I had added two bulbs to my cart that I could only hope were the desired brightness, color and temperature I wanted. After all that time and energy spent on these light bulbs, they turned out to be just fine.
I might have made shopping for a light bulb more complicated than it is, but in my defense, these days choosing the right light bulb has become more personal than finding the perfect lamp. So, for those of you who have an old soul like me and truly miss the good now old fashioned light bulb, here is a cheat sheet of lumen / watt conversions to help you with your choice, and make your light bulb shopping experience is more energy efficient:
|Incandescent light bulb (watts)
|Fluorescent / LED (watts)