We found 1.5 watt LED bulbs at Walmart for $5.78. These state that they "replace 40 watt" , are "warm white light" and claim a 30,000 hour lifetime (though they are only warrantied for two years).
Interestingly, they also say "Outdoor Lantern". The fine print does point out that the minimum starting temperature is -20 F, but it surprised me to see it recommended for outdoor use at all as most websites I've read seem to warn against using LED bulbs outdoors.
I was looking to use these inside. I put them in a lamp near my wife's computer. This wasn't done without some convincing: my wife is very fussy about her lighting. However, like me she's cheap, so the prospect of replacing 40 watt bulbs with 1.5 watts attracted her enough to at least give it a trial run.
The first picture at left is a standard 40 watt incandescent bulb. It illuminates the area nicely, but it does cause some glare on my wife's computer screen. The single 1.5 watt LED below that obviously isn't providing the same illumination at all - that "replaces 40 watt" is more than optimistic.
Below that we have two of the LED lamps turned on - that comes closer to matching the 40 watt incandescent. It is bright enough to read by and doesn't put glare on the computer screen.
They aren't hot, either. Heat is where incandescent. lamps waste energy; LED bulbs run cool.
Overall, she likes it. It could be a little brighter, but with two bulbs, it is sufficient. Using 3 watts instead of 40 for four hours a day is worth more than $5.78 - assuming these cheap things will last at least a year, of course. I'll have to remember to keep the packaging and sales slip: I don't really trust anything this cheap.
I'm going to poke around Home Depot later today to see if they have better quality and higher output bulbs. I can find lots of choice online but shipping costs for small numbers of bulbs makes the cost unnattractive.
There are higher light output bulbs advertised. For example, this GeoBulb Line promises that - at a price of $120.00 per bulb!
Tony Lawrence 2009-03-24 Rating:
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