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Are you ready for the Halogen Ban?

The EU will enforce the sixth stage of the ErP Regulation (EC) 244/2009 from the 1st September 2018 across non-directional halogen lamps, these are the standard pear or candle bulb shaped lamps used in homes across Europe. The ban prohibits the placing of certain inefficient non-directional household lamps on the market, replacing halogen bulbs with more efficient and longer-lasting LED equivalents.

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Halogen bulb vs LED energy saving bulb

Don’t panic! You will still be able to purchase halogen bulbs after this date, but once they’re gone, they are gone!

Although LED remains more expensive than halogen, as consumers we are becoming more and more conscious of the energy we use. You’ll notice in supermarkets and DIY stores that you’ll now find a wider choice in LED lamps than older incandescent and halogen types.

It’s already easier now to pick up an LED bulb that can be used in your existing fitting and the higher initial cost to switch will quickly be offset as there will be no unnecessarily high energy bills and no need to replace the bulb as often, as LED replacements have more than 35,000 lifetime hours.

So why impose a ban?

Across Europe, there are still an estimated 500 million halogen spotlights being used in homes and, if they were replaced with good LED equivalents, every household would save an average of £70 a year in energy savings! The payback period can be as little as a few months. Switching from a 50w halogen to a 6.5w LED bulb could save you approximately £150 over the product's lifetime!

Compared to LEDs, halogen bulbs consume 10 times more energy and emit significantly more excess heat which negatively impacts the environment and global warming. 

New technology has resulted in a dramatic evolution of LED lighting and it is now easy to find lights which give out an attractive warm white light for homes or a brighter white light for the workplace. LED lamps themselves are highly efficient A++ rated lights which produce 120 lumens per watt compared to a traditional halogen bulb which produces only around 12 lumens per watt. The LED will waste a lot less heat, whilst being more reliable, they are bright as soon as they are switched on and have a tremendously longer lifespan.

The efficiencies of LED lamps:

  • 1 LED bulb has the equivalent lifespan of 35 halogen lamps. Yes, a whopping 35!
  • LED lamps last over 35,000 hours when used 6 hours a day, 2 days a week.
  • Energy efficient lighting could save enough energy to power 11 million households for one year and avoid the emission of 12 million tonnes of CO2 in Europe.

If you’re convinced, head to www.rswww.com to find LED equivalents across the extensive range from RS Pro, Ledvance, and other brands.

You can find the full range of LED lamps here.

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17 Apr 2018, 10:05

Comments

October 22, 2018 13:20

One of the main issues I have found with LED bulbs is dimming. There still seems to be a minefield of compatibility issues between the bulbs and various types of dimmer (leading edge/trailing edge) etc. I have wasted money on suposedly dimmable LED bulbs and dimming devices - more than the extra money it would have cost to run a traditional bulb. This was with high-end Philips and Sylvania bulbs, not cheap Chinese ones too. I am all for LED lighting and the greater efficiency, but dimming is an area that needs concentrated effort by the industry to sort out properly.

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October 29, 2018 09:47

@morgano Agree! Guess time will resolve this, have there been any new design dimmers just for dimmable LEDs? They could optimise the design to get a more linear effect. Also, why on a dimmer that is left at the maximum brightness setting do non-dimmable LED bulbs quickly fail? Is it the small leading edge jump from zero to about 30V, if so it could indicate that any mains spike is the cause of premature failures in LED bulbs.

May 1, 2018 08:00

With regard to blue light. My readings (not findings) are that the LED based lamps used 'Ultra Blue LED' Element which emit narrow band visible blue light (more efficient). These LEDs are overlaid with an organic substance, phosphor, which re-absorbs the blue and emits the designed light type. Available explanation on WWW. the lamps are encased in plastic which does not not allow UV transmission. Not the Same as a Fluro tube

Fluorescent lamps/tubes do not allow UV to pass thru the tube.

Normal glass stops UV.

Worst case if you are exposed to a Halogen lamp with out a glass filter we will be exposed to UV as the lamp itself is Quartz based for heat and is UV transparent

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May 1, 2018 08:01

With regard to blue light. My readings (not findings) are that the LED based lamps used 'Ultra Blue LED' Element which emit narrow band visible blue light (more efficient). These LEDs are overlaid with an organic substance, phosphor, which re-absorbs the blue and emits the designed light type. Available explanation on WWW. the lamps are encased in plastic which does not not allow UV transmission. Not the Same as a Fluro tube

Fluorescent lamps/tubes do not allow UV to pass thru the tube.

Normal glass stops UV.

Worst case if you are exposed to a Halogen lamp with out a glass filter we will be exposed to UV as the lamp itself is Quartz based for heat and is UV transparent

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May 1, 2018 08:13

From an energy efficiency point of view this has to be a good move (although I agree with the reliability issues raised). However, I have been using incandescent light bulbs for years as test loads for metering tests and heaters in environmental cycling test rigs. They were reliable, easily replaced and cheap: a lot cheaper than any equivalent small load/heater. So, I will be stocking up on GU10s before they disappear.
Perhaps there will be a gap in the market now which RS can fill with some small, cheap 50 & 100W 'heaters'.

May 1, 2018 07:58

@RMx1, this is an area I have long been interested and agree with the 'blue' problem. My concerns were initially because white LED's were made by converting UV light to 'white' with the appropriate phosphors. How much UV was still present?
Halogen bulbs without a front glass also provide UV and should not be used in a desk lamp which is used close to the working environment.
Fluorescent strips lights also convert UV to 'white' light and had been a concern for decades - we used the mercury line from stray light to calibrate spectrometers, albeit on a sensitive instrument.
As far as I can see the current scare was caused by research published in Spain, has there been more?
A comment on this research is:
"Bobby Qureshi, London Eye Hospital consultant opthamologist, points to the test conditions used. ‘The Madrid study tested someone looking at the equivalent of a 100watt light bulb, at a distance of 12 inches for 12 hours a day,’ he says. ‘And this isn’t something a normal person would be doing.’ "
There is I agree concern generally about the amount of blue light emitted and the manufacturers are addressing this with 'low blue' lamps which I will definitely switch over to as even 'warm white' emits blue light. I'm watching Philips among others for these developments.

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April 30, 2018 11:20

The issue that I have had with LED light bulbs is premature failure making them very expensive despite their efficiency. The worst being those with string elements mounted in clear envelopes. I've had 5 failures in the 11 positions using such bulbs within 1 year. All "blinking" once they were on for a few minutes (one of the 4 elements in the bulb was flashing on and off). While the bulbs are costly, the warranties require that I ship the failed bulb to the manufacturer, and that makes using the warranty uneconomical.

I don't think this is a quality issue with a single lot or manufacturer, as the failed bulbs represent purchases over a long period of time and from 2 suppliers (although I guess they could all be coming from the same factory and simply being marketed by different companies).

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April 30, 2018 11:35

Another good reason for the UK to quit Europe. LED lighting might be energy efficient, however, it does apparently have its own dangers to the eye, especially with all the LED devices one comes into contact with nowadays. The main problem seems to be LED's do not give the full spectrum of light which the body needs for good health, they are basically biased towards blue light.

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