LED lighting myths decoded 

    By Reggie Nxumalo, GM, Philips Lighting Southern Africa

    July, 2017

    Over the course of the last decade, LEDs has become popular lighting solutions because of its energy efficiency, the long-life of the light source, as well as its increasingly affordable. In more and more applications, this established technology is now the lighting of choice. Moreover, it is also lighting up the path towards the future of lighting that is based on the next generation of light-emitting diodes: OLED.

    However, even though more and more people appreciate the benefits of LED lighting, there are still stories and misunderstandings going around surrounding the technology. This series of articles aims to shed light on the most common myths in order to provide a clearer picture of how LEDs can work you’re your business or home.

    LEDs need time to warm up and can’t be dimmed and controlled

    LEDs do not require any time to warm up. Unlike fluorescent lamps and energy-saving twisters that come on slowly and my even flicker, LEDs shine with their full light output almost instantly after switching them on. They can also be switched on and off continuously, without shortening their lifespan.

    LEDs can also be dimmed and controlled, as these lights are digital, which basically means they are either on or off. To dim them, they are switched on and off very rapidly (faster than the eye can see), so they can be controlled. However not all LED light-bulbs are designed to dim, so if you want to use a dimmer, then you must choose the lamps that show that they can be dimmed. Look for the dimmable logo on packs. In many cases, you can use your existing dimmer switches. Just remove your current lamp and replace it with a dimmable LED lamp.

    LEDs don’t work in extremely cold environments & shine with a very white light

    LEDs actually become more efficient and last even longer when used in cold temperatures. Excessively high temperatures can shorten the life of electrical and electronic components (which is partly why traditional incandescent lamps don’t last very long), so running a LED lamp in even the coldest climate is not an issue.

    The first LED bulbs were very white, as this was the most effective way to use them. However, today they are also available in an array of 'shades of white' ranging from warm yellow through to cool blue. Look for the 'shade of white' indication on the packaging.

    LEDs contain hazardous substances and are harmful to the eyes

    LEDs do not contain mercury, lead or other toxic materials and are completely recyclable just like most other electronic devices.

    LED lights LED lights are as safe to the eyes as any other artificial light source. They are not like lasers, the light is not focused to a single point, and the intensity is comparable to traditional bulbs and halogen lamps.

    LED lights affects Circadian Rhythm Cycle

    The human body utilised light cues such as those provided by the sun, to time its internal functions. These light cues regulate mood, sleep, energy, appetite, as well as digestion. These daily internal cycles are called Circadian rhythms.

    These rhythms are stimulated by our eyes’ photoreceptor cells, as they measure the blue light spectrum in the light. Although there is a small amount of blue light present in LEDs that are used for general purpose, this is a tiny fraction of the emissions when compared to natural day light.

    So in short, a LED luminaire designed for general lighting applications does not have enough blue light spectrum to stimulate photoreceptor cells in our eyes, thus it cannot influence our Circadian rhythm.

    Hopefully this article series has managed to debunk many of the LED myths.

    In the end, deciding on the perfect lighting solutions for your home or office will come down to a range of considerations that include energy usage, maintenance costs, lifespan of the systems, colour quality, colour consistency as well as making the best of the available technology.

    For further information, please contact:

    Marketing and Communications Manager
    Nelisiwe Nkosi 
    Tel: 011 471 6000

    About Philips Lighting

    Philips Lighting (Euronext Amsterdam ticker: LIGHT), a global leader in lighting products, systems and services, delivers innovations that unlock business value, providing rich user experiences that help improve lives. Serving professional and consumer markets, we lead the industry in leveraging the Internet of Things to transform homes, buildings and urban spaces. With 2016 sales of EUR 7.1 billion, we have approximately 34,000 employees in over 70 countries. News from Philips Lighting is located at the NewsroomTwitter and LinkedIn. Information for investors can be found on the Investor Relations page.