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Energy saving lamps to replace halogen
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PS_RalphW



Joined: 24 Nov 2005
Posts: 5264
Location: Cambridge

PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Number one task when I move into my new house - every single lamp is halogen.

What recommendations do you lot have for LED replacements?
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Pepperman



Joined: 10 Oct 2010
Posts: 759

PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Best bet is to actually go into a good shop and see which ones look best. There are some really excellent LED lamps out there although you'll have to pay a bit more for them. But they pay for themselves in saved replacement costs and electricity savings very quickly.

I would strongly recommend going for ones which have a colour temperature of 2700K at most (although I haven't seen less than 2700K yet). Anything higher will be too cool for domestic purposes.
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adam2
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Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 6209
Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 3:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are the existing lamps 12 volt halogen, via transformers, or mains voltage ones ?

The 12 volt ones have two very narrow pins, the mains voltage ones have two larger pings and fit with a twist and lock movement rather simply pushing in.
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PS_RalphW



Joined: 24 Nov 2005
Posts: 5264
Location: Cambridge

PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not familiar yet with halogen fittings or voltages. Mixture of both, I suspect. The bathroom in-ceiling down lighters appear to be simple wire connectors. If they are low voltage how do I tell? Is it 12V dc or something else? Where will the transformer be? Do I have to rip out the ceiling to trace the wiring? Presumably LEDs can be either 12v DC or 240v AC
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adam2
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Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 6209
Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 12 volt halogen lamps will be supplied from transformers, normally found in the ceiling void.
With a bit of luck, the transformer can be accesed via the hole in the ceiling through which the light fitting fits.
Sometimes though the transformer is screwed to a joist and can not be accesed with cutting a hole in the ceiling.

There are two types of transformer, copper/iron and electronic.
Most LED retrofit lamps will work on the copper/iron transformers which are the older syle and larger and heavier.

Most LED retrofit lamps wont work on electronic transformers, these are the newer type and smaller and lighter than older types.

SUMMARY EXCEPT IN BATHROOMS OR SIMILAR LOCATIONS

12 volt lamps on copper iron transformers.
Simple retrofit=remove halogen lamps and fit 12 volt LED lamps instead.
Best retrofit=remove transformers and lampholders and fit GU10 mains voltage lampholders, with mains voltage LED lamps.

12 volt lamps on electronic transformers.
Remove the transformers and the 12 volt lampholders and fit instead GU10 mains voltage lampholders and mains voltage LED lamps.

240 volt GU10 halogen lamps=simply remove the halogen lamps and replace with mains voltage GU10 lamps.

ANY TYPE OF HALOGEN LIGHTING IN A BATHROOM
Start again with 12 volt downlight fittings, supplied through a special 12 volt LED driver NOT a standard transformer.
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revdode



Joined: 24 Nov 2005
Posts: 317
Location: Hungary

PostPosted: Fri Aug 16, 2013 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have Osram GU10 LED lamps in one string with a couple of cheap chinese led clusters and a couple of Philips masterled lamps all mains voltage.

The cheap chinese ones were put in by my land lady, blue white, terrible light and when they go they go with a bang! So far in two years we have a 60% failure rate higher than simple Halogen lamps!

The Philips lamps are nice warmer color, quite close to Halogen but not much sparkle or beam shape, also they don't actually fit well in the standard fixing rings (I believe the new ones are better).

I shouldn't say this but the Osram (I work for Philips Embarassed ) lamps are really my personal favourite, good balance between color and contrast and slightly more efficient on paper than the Philips lamps and they fit!

Philips and Osram have been very reliable, quite pricey but they should last to 25k hours with around 10% failures. No failures yet despite a very small void for the lamps and typical summer temperatures here well above 30 degrees (it matters A LOT).

Retrofit lamps are always a compromise at work we are working now with recessed downlights giving more than 100 lm/W accent lights like Halogen performance >80lm/w with a 50k hour life.
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adam2
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Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 6209
Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2013 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In general the LED retrofit lamps from any established well known lamp supplier such as Phillips, Osram, Slyvania, GE, etc should be OK.

Cheap imports are far less likely to give satisfaction and may even be dangerous.

Also beware old stock lamps even of reputable manufacture, the technology has improved so rapidly that a lamp that has been sitting on a shelf for a couple of years is almost certainly inferior to a recently made one.

I have used large numbers of "Kosnic" brand LED lamps at work with good results. This firm, though not well known in the UK are considered reptuable.
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Tarrel



Joined: 29 Nov 2011
Posts: 2447
Location: Ross-shire, Scotland

PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2013 11:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We have 5W surface mount LEDs from Homewatt. They do a warm white and a daylight white. We went for the warm white (nominal colour temp 3000k), whereas the daylight white is 6400K Shocked ).

The lights are good and bright. They are certainly a lot white than regular halogens, but it is a pleasant light. Much nicer than a CFL for example. The spread is good - comparable to a regular halogen.

I should have mentioned; they are GU10 fitting (mains voltage). Around 8 each.

It's nice to put them on and have the room flooded with light, without having to worry too much about energy consumption.

HTH.
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therabble



Joined: 17 Sep 2013
Posts: 10
Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello, I'm new but have been lurking for years!

For the last few years I've been on a big energy efficiency push. Three years ago I bought a load of those chinese 3 watt GU10 LED bulbs from ebay for around 1.50 each (ish).

I purchased one of each type initially as an experiment and settled on one particular bulb that proved to work reasonably well and had the best light.

Looks like this:


They are definitely not as bright and the light (called "warm white") isn't as sparkling as a halogen bulb, but the energy saving is huge. I have gone from 300watts to 18watts in my wearedodgy, and I have 29 of these type of light in the house.

Since initial trials I have systematically replaced all my halogens (and some of the poorer CFL/LED bulbs that I bought in the early days) with these ones.

Out of the 30 or so I've bought only two died, and that was within the first couple of weeks.

The philips/osram bulbs are probably better, but given the low failure rate with the I have experienced with the chinese bulbs, I just can't justify the cost.

TheRabble
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adam2
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Joined: 02 Jul 2007
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Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome, cheap unbranded lamps are sometimes fine, but often you get what you pay for.

LED lamps to replace halogen have recently improved so much that even lamps purchased 24 months ago may be inferior to ones purchased today.

In many cases I urge stockpiling against future shortages, but definatly not with LED lamps ! they are improving too quickly.
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Tarrel



Joined: 29 Nov 2011
Posts: 2447
Location: Ross-shire, Scotland

PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We have a "pillar" style floor standing lamp which uses 3 x small edison screw candle bulbs. The lamp is situated in the wearedodgy/diner/hall which also has GU10 halogen-style lamps. I just put three Tesco LED candle bulbs in. they were 8.50 each Shocked , but it is the nicest energy-saving light I have ever experienced. Seems to be just the right colour temp.

Together with the LED replacements for the halogens, I reckon they will pay for themselves within six months. (We're using 34 Watts in total, compared to 575 before!)

The box for the candle lamps states a 25 year life. I've kept the receipt. If they fail, I will take them back. I think we need to adjust our mindset with this type of lighting, away from seeing the bulb as a consumable item, and towards seeing it more like a household appliance with a similar lifespan.
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fifthcolumn



Joined: 22 Nov 2007
Posts: 2525

PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 8:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Purely subjective:

I bought a 6W LED lamp for $28 four years ago. It's still going strong and it (subjectively) gives out about the same light as 40-60W incandescent.

I count it as being an excellent purchase.
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kenneal - lagger
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Joined: 20 Sep 2006
Posts: 9815
Location: Newbury, Berkshire

PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 3:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you have inset lamps all over the house, my advice would be to take them out and block up all those nasty holes. They are sluicing heat out of your house into the loft and then the big wide world. Fit surface mounted lights instead.

I have had two separate experiences of inset lights where the heat loss has been tremendous. The first was a friend of mine who had sold his old house and bought a smaller, more modern house built to higher insulation standards. After the first winter he found that he couldn't keep the new house above 16 deg C if the outside temperature went below 10 deg, even then the heating system was running at full pelt all the time. When the wind blew the inside temperature was barely above the outside one. It was costing him more money for less comfort than he had in his older, larger house.

I did a survey for him and found that the halogen downlighters, about 50 of them throughout the house, all connected in various ways, some less direct than others, to the outside air. Even the wearedodgy lights had a path to the outside. The insulation had been stripped back over a large area around the downlighters which only added to his problems.

The other instance was in our local village hall. This is a large, double height hall with single storey breakout rooms at one end all heated by underfloor heating. The large hall could be heated quite satisfactorily but it was impossible to keep the smaller breakout rooms at a comfortable temperature. This was a major problem as the rooms were used by a nursery school. The heating system was checked and rebalanced several times, all to no avail. After I had done the survey for my friend I noticed that the breakout rooms have two downlighters each. On inspection they were found to have a direct path into the loft. They were removed, the holes blocked up and surface mounted light fitted in their place. Miraculously they became comfortable for the first time since the building was completed.

Moral? Make sure your downlighters are capped properly or, even better, get rid of them completely.
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woodburner



Joined: 06 Apr 2009
Posts: 3376

PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 5:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for a useful piece of information, though many downlighters appear to just increase heat loss to above the ground floor as that is where most are.
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kenneal - lagger
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Joined: 20 Sep 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 6:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In older houses where there is always a gap between the floor joists and the supporting brickwork the air from the first floor void can escape into the cavity and then out of the top of the wall. If there is a wind this will suck the air out of the house. If newer houses are not constructed properly or have partial fill cavity wall insulation this same mechanism can take place.

They also reduce the fire rating of the floor structure. A first floor should have a fire rating of half an hour to allow the fire brigade to get to you in case of fire and then have time to get in and rescue you from upstairs. A floor structure of tongued and grooved floorboards with timber joists and a plasterboard ceiling with either a skim coat or with a slurry coat will give this half hour rating. Cut holes in the ceiling and the fire can just pass straight through and start burning the joists and floorboards above. Any downlighter should be fitted with a fireproof hood but most aren't.
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