LED Holiday Lights Vs. Incandescent Holiday Lights: Time to Convert?November 10, 2015
Conversion is not the smooth, easy-going process some seem to think – John Bunyan
Only the wisest and stupidest never change. Confucius
Changes are difficult, even ones that are helpful. Ever keep walking around a needed change, circling it, yet never stepping down that path?
Many people have heard about the benefits of changing to LED Christmas lighting. Some aren’t convinced there’s a need. Others are convinced, but the change seems overwhelming, especially with all the expense and busyness that’s already part of the holiday. But especially for townships, municipalities, businesses, or individuals with large holiday light displays, it may be time for conversion.
Here are some reasons to consider making the change.
Cost is the initial issue with switching holiday lighting. LED lighting is more expensive initially. But the savings start as soon as you plug them in. Generally, LED lighting consumes about 90% less energy than incandescent, for big savings on the energy bill.
Let’s take a look:
One hundred 7-watt C7 incandescent bulbs draw about 6 amps of power. The same quantity of C7 LED bulbs draws only about 1 amp of power. The numbers are more significant with the big picture of usage.
If you’re converting 10,000 incandescent bulbs to LED bulbs, your amp usage will drop from about 600 amps to 80 amps (86% decrease). Pretty impressive. If you convert 1,000 incandescent light strings to LED strands, your amps needed will drop from 200 amps down to 40 amps (80% decrease).
How can estimated savings be calculated? You could do some math and apply this formula:
Watts x Hours Illuminated x 1000 = Kilowatt Hours
(You will need to get your kilowatt/hour charge from your electrical bill).
Additional information and details on how to perform these calculations, please see our article How To Calculate The Energy Savings Of LED Christmas Lights
Or, you can plug in your information to a conversion calculator like the one supplied by Wisconsin Public Service.
Also, incandescent lights burn faster and need to be replaced more frequently than LED holiday lights, adding to their lifetime cost.
Ease of Installation
LED holiday lights are easier to install than incandescent lights. Because they draw less energy, a lot more lights can be connected end to end (45 strands of LED lights vs. only 4 strands of incandescent lights). This speeds up installation and also eliminates the need for multiple outlets, timers, extension cords, and connections.
LED Christmas lights are kinder to the environment than incandescent. Since they use less energy, less carbon dioxide is produced. And there are great programs for recycling old incandescent lights, so that all recyclable parts are removed and processed. No piles of old lights in the landfills. A discount is available to those who participate.
Rated for up to 50,000 hours of life, LED holiday lights are far more durable than incandescent. Replacement product won’t need to be purchased as often, because LED lights don’t burn out as quickly. Quality LED lights like ours are made of a hard acrylic plastic, with a one-piece, molded bulb construction. This ensures a watertight construction, and that the lights are virtually unbreakable.
LED lights have a lower fire risk than incandescent lights. With incandescent bulbs, most of the energy is converted to heat, but LED Christmas lights are energy efficient and convert most of the energy to light. They remain cool to the touch no matter how long they are lit!
Brilliance of Color
The color produced by LED holiday lights is more brilliant, brighter, and truer than incandescent (and there are more color choices). A red LED light is a true red light with a red bulb cover. An incandescent red light is a white light with a painted bulb cover. LED lights retain their brilliance and color, even after years of use. While the color of the incandescent lights, will chip or fade, usually within the first year of use.
Making the Switch
Maybe the decision to switch to LED has been made. For townships, municipalities, and businesses or individuals with larger holiday light displays thereâ€™s one more considerationâ€”Premium Grade LEDs vs. Commercial Grade LEDs.
Premium Grade LEDs vs. Commercial Grade LEDs
Premium Grade LED holiday lights connect with standard male/female plugs. Premium sets will plug right into an outlet, extension cord, or timer, with no adapter plug required. Up to 45 sets can be connected end to end on most Premium Grade LEDs.
Commercial Grade LED Christmas lights connect with a watertight coaxial connection system that won’t pull apart. A power adapter plug is required, and is sold separately from the light set. Additional accessories for commercial grade lights are available for ease of installation. Up to 60 commercial sets can be plugged into one power adapter plug.
There is no difference in the LED diodes inside these sets, and most bulb styles and shapes are available in both commercial and premium grade LEDs. However, the advantages of the commercial Grade product (Heavier Gauge Wire, Co-Axial Water-Tight Connection) have proved useful, in large-scale projects and municipal installations.
Contact us for any assistance making the change.