Rejuvenation

About a Bulb

No matter what fixtures you choose for your home, they all need light bulbs. Simple, right?

Unfortunately not. In the past decade, bulb choices have become more numerous…and more confusing. Economic, environmental, and political concerns have made lighting standards swing like a pendulum.

Given that artificial lighting accounts for nearly 20% of world energy use*, many of us want super-efficient bulbs. But since efficiency standards remain in flux, what’s a consumer to do? Allow Rejuvenation to help.

We won’t tell you there is a single, right kind of bulb—because we offer all kinds, from the historically accurate to the latest, longest-lasting wunderkind. However, we can provide some guidance on making the best choice for you, your wallet, and your fixture.

Bulb Breakdown


(shown here C2570)

(shown here C1425)

(shown here C0908)

(shown here C1940)

The newest kids on the block, LEDs contain semiconductor crystals in which electrons bounce and glow.

Compact fluorescent bulbs light up when electricity passes through mercury vapor, providing steady illumination.

Your basic bulbs, incandescents have a tungsten filament that glows as electricity moves through it.

Based on the earliest bulbs, reproductions use carbon or tungsten filaments to emit dim, warm light.

brightness

450 – 800 lumens

Energy Usage

8 – 12.5 watts

Color Temperature

2700K

Lifespan

25,000 hours

brightness

80 – 1,850 lumens

Energy Usage

2 – 27 watts

Color Temperature

2700K – 5500K

Lifespan

8,000 – 10,000 hours

brightness

100 – 5,870 lumens

Energy Usage

15 – 300 watts

Color Temperature

2700K – 5500K

Lifespan

750 – 5,000 hours

brightness

35 – 500 lumens

Energy Usage

15 – 70 watts

Color Temperature

N/A

Lifespan

Usually shorter than other types

Pros

  • Energy efficient
  • Mercury free
  • Longest lasting

Pros

  • Energy efficient
  • Screw-in or GU24 bases
  • Enclosed options available

Pros

  • Widely available
  • Affordable
  • Decorative styles available

Pros

  • Lovely when exposed
  • Historically accurate

Cons

  • Higher initial cost

Cons

  • Trace amounts of mercury
  • Spiral designs can look unappealing when exposed

Cons

  • Not energy efficient by today’s standards
  • Higher wattages will be phased out in a few years

Cons

  • Not energy efficient
  • Produce low light
  • Can be expensive
SHOP LEDS
SHOP COMPACT FLOURESCENT
SHOP INCANDESCENT
SHOP REPRODUCTION

Light Bulb Lingo

LUMEN The measure of the total visible light emitted. The higher the lumens, the brighter the light.
WATTAGE The amount of power to light the bulb. Wattage does not determine the color or brightness of the light.
LUMENS PER WATT A measure of efficiency. Think of this ratio like miles per gallon for a car. You can go 800 miles on 20 gallons of gas in one car or on 80 gallons in another. You’ll get 40 mpg in the first car or 10 mpg in the second. Same with bulbs: an 8W compact fluorescent (CF) and a 40W incandescent can both produce 800 lumens. When you divide lumens by watts, you find that the CF produces 100 lumens per watt, while the incandescent produces only 20 lumens per watt. That means the CF is five times more energy efficient.
COLOR TEMPERATURE The appearance of the light. Color temperatures for light bulbs are measured in Kelvin (K) units. Higher numbers, paradoxically, correlate to cooler temperatures and colors—that is, the light looks more blue. Lower numbers mean warmer temperatures and colors. Most light bulbs for home use fall between 2,700K and 5,500K. A higher number (5,000K) is best for task lighting and a lower number (2,700K) for everyday household lighting.

*Light’s Labor Lost: Policies for Energy-efficient Lighting, International Energy Agency, 2009