LED is a highly energy efficient lighting technology, and has the potential to fundamentally change the future of lighting in the United States. Residential LEDs — especially ENERGY STAR rated products — use at least 75% less energy, and last 25 times longer, than incandescent lighting.

How LEDs are Different

LED lighting is very different from other lighting sources such as incandescent bulbs and CFLs. Key differences include the following:

» Light Source: LEDs are the size of a fleck of pepper, and a mix of red, green, and blue LEDs is typically used to make white light.
» Direction: LEDs emit light in a specific direction, reducing the need for reflectors and diffusers that can trap light. This feature makes LEDs more efficient for many uses such as recessed downlights and task lighting. With other types of lighting, the light must be reflected to the desired direction and more than half of the light may never leave the fixture.
» Heat: LEDs emit very little heat. In comparison, incandescent bulbs release 90% of their energy as heat and CFLs release about 80% of their energy as heat.

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