Sunday, 18 January 2009

LED Lighting

We're having a little bit of work done on the house and as part of that I had to move the outside light by the front door. On further inspection I found the old light wasn't going to cut the mustard in the new location, it wasn't going to be waterproof for one, which is sort of important. So a great excuse as if any were needed to buy something new and funky!

The obvious choice to me was to look into whether LED lights are available for outside lighting. Imagine my surprise when I found it seems they're actually getting quite commonplace and we were able to nip down to our local DIY store and pick one up. For some reason I was expecting to hunt around Internet sites and order one. The pictures shows what we bought. It's a fairly small chrome effect affair with two plastic panels beyond which are mounted a total of 24 white LEDs, 12 of these are at the front and 12 to the rear.

It provides plenty of light, not massively bright and offensive like security lighting, but easily enough to see your way up the drive to the doorway. The best part of this, as with all LED lighting, is the power usage. My current cost meter doesn't budge when it's turned on, not even a sniff of a change in power usage. Assuming I've not wired it up to some free electric supply I'm not aware of, or accidentally stolen from our neighbours, I can only conclude all 24 LEDs are using less than one watt of power. It's my first LED installation at home and almost certainly wont be the last.

I hate to finish on a downer but there are drawbacks of course. The LEDs are not replaceable so if one dies, however unlikely, you have to put up with it looking silly or replace the entire light. The other is the colour of the light, we've all been brought up with tungsten lighting so the colour of LED light does take a little getting used to.

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