When decorating a room or building a new home, one consideration is the type of light fixture to use. As you consider fixtures, think about the type of light you want it to emit, and where it will be used. You wouldn’t use the same type of bulb in a basement or kitchen that you would in a bedroom. Here are the basic types of light bulbs, and the best places to use them.
Incandescent lights are the most common and the most familiar. Electric current is run through a filament which produces light. This type of bulb is least expensive, provides a soft light, and is suitable for use in any room.
Halogen lights produce “white light” and are the closest to natural light. They’re more energy efficient than incandescent bulbs, but also burn hotter. They’re a good choice for under cabinet light, pendant lights, or pot lights. Don’t use your bare hands to change halogen lights. Oil from your hands can create uneven heating and cause them to explode.
Florescent lights are best used in large areas such as a basement or an attic. The light has blue undertones, which can be too harsh or bright in small spaces. Florescents come in warm and cool tones, or special colors. They burn longer than incandescent bulbs, but aren’t as versatile.
CFLs, or compact florescent bulbs, burn 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs and use one quarter of the energy. Unlike traditional florescent bulbs, CFLs are interchangeable with incandescent bulbs and don’t have the harshness of their predecessor. They do contain a small amount of mercury so follow directions for use and disposal.
LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, are even more efficient to use, but they provide directional not diffuse light and aren’t good for large spaces. Grouping LEDs in clusters creates a more diffuse effect, but they cost five to six times more than CFLs.
Whatever fixture you select, be sure to choose the bulbs carefully to get the best result. Consider the room and its function, the wattage capacity of the fixture, and the cost. JM Mullen Electrical Service can install any light fixture in your home or business. We continually educate our staff about new technology and can give you valuable advice. Call us today for help with your lighting needs.