Can You Replace Halogen Bulbs With LED? – Cargister

Are you still using the age-old halogen bulbs in your household?

Have you ever thought about the efficiency of these bulbs?

If you haven’t, let me give you a little information. You see, a 100-watt halogen produces 1900 lumens, with a luminous efficiency of 3.5%.

This isn’t a very high percentage, so it isn’t very energy efficient. What if I told you, you could actually replace these inefficient bulbs with LED bulbs, where a standard 100-watt bulb produces 11500 lumens while consuming the same amount of electricity. That’s an 80% increase in energy efficiency!

What Makes LEDs So Great?

So what makes it so energy efficient? This is because they don’t use filaments, unlike halogen bulbs that use tungsten filament as a conductor which heats up to produce light and heat.


LED is an acronym for light-emitting diode, which is a semiconductor that generates light when electricity passes through it. It is made up of several LEDs clustered together.

The lack of filament allows it to produce less heat, converting most of the electrical energy into light. Thus, keeping energy input constant, it will produce more light than a halogen bulb. Thus, a 100 watt LED produces 11500 lumens, and Halogen bulb produces 1900 lumens.

Read AlsoHalogen Light Bulb Types

How Efficient Are LEDs Anyway?

LED bulbs are so energy efficient that they convert 90% of electricity to light, and 10% to heat. The opposite happens with a halogen bulb, where 90% of the energy is converted to heat, which makes these bulbs hotter. In other words, halogen bulbs waste more energy as it only provides 10% useful light energy.

Can you see the stark difference in energy efficiency?  In fact, these are 85% more efficient than a halogen bulb. This is why an LED with a smaller wattage can replace halogen bulbs with a higher wattage. For instance, a 50-watt Halogen bulb can be replaced with a 7.5 watt LED bulb.

How Do LEDs Affect The Surrounding Temperature?

Because they produce less heat, the surroundings are cooler, unlike halogen light bulbs that heat up the surroundings and can be uncomfortable during the summer or in the kitchen. Even the bulb is dangerous to touch. LEDs are safer.

Thus, you not only have to avoid compromising on brightness, but you also get an energy-efficient and cost-effective product.

How Compatible Are LED Light Bulbs?

These lights can be used anywhere; in households, in shop signs, in exhibitions and other forms of displays, in events, media of entertainment, and so on.

The bulbs are manufactured to function in severe conditions, i.e., at negative temperatures of -40 degrees Fahrenheit to extremely high temperatures of 180 degrees Fahrenheit, with no time needed to warm up the LED bulb.

How Long Do LEDs Last?

Under normal conditions, an LED will work efficiently for ten years or approximately 100000 hours. They might fade as they get older, but will not flicker like halogen bulbs. On top of that, a halogen bulb only lasts for six months, i.e., 2000 hours of non-stop use.

Can I Switch To LEDs Now?

So, can you switch your halogen bulbs to LEDs right away? The answer is yes, but you have to make sure to match the wattage. Most LEDs need less power, so the equivalent wattage should be less.

leds light

In most cases, the equivalent wattage is written on the package. Also, you should notice the base fitting, which may be different from halogen bulbs, but usually, it can be placed in halogen fittings regardless.

It is to be noted that LEDs work with a DC electric supply, as opposed to halogen bulbs, which use AC current. You may need to attach an adapter to it, but in most cases, the conversion to DC from AC takes place inside the bulb.

Which LEDs Do I Choose?

Another question arises – which LED lightbulb should you purchase? Well, that will depend on the following factors.

  • Wattage  As it needs less energy to produce the same brightness, most LEDs have low wattage ratings, typically from 4w to 14w. Choose one based on your halogen bulbs at home or elsewhere.
  • Color Temperature – If you are looking for a bulb that will keep your surroundings cool, you should buy an LED labeled “cool white”. You can also pick “warm white” if you aim to buy one that’ll keep your surroundings warm.
  • Lumens – The higher the lumens, the higher the light output rating, and the brighter the light. Based on your preference for brightness, you can choose one with your desired number of lumens.
  • Beam – The greater the beam rating, the greater the coverage of the beam of light from it. This is usually expressed in degrees of angle. Choose one that suits your preference or requirements.
  • Fitting – Your fittings may differ, so you must choose accordingly. Usual fittings are E27, GU10, MR16 & E14.

Comparing Costs

Now you may be wondering; even though halogen bulbs are energy inefficient, they are cheap to buy and install. But this energy inefficiency actually makes the daily running costs of these bulbs extremely high; to a remarkable 20 times the annual costs of running an LED bulb.

This calculation is done factoring three things: the cost of bulb purchase, cost of electricity consumption, and lifespan of the bulb. These are more expensive than halogen bulbs ($220), particularly because they are created to function alone.

When grouped together, these bulbs need more components to function properly. These include a circuit board, driving component, and so on. While these circuit boards are quicker to make, it takes time to test these out to see if they work properly. In contrast, a halogen bulb costs very little, approximately $3 to $5.

However, a bulb uses 85% less energy than a halogen light bulb. Therefore electricity bills will be drastically reduced. In addition, it lasts ten times longer than a halogen bulb.  Thus, replacement costs are low.

When all three costs are considered, it is an obvious conclusion that an LED is a far cheaper alternative than the halogen bulb.


Thus, we can conclude that LEDs can be a quick and effective replacement for halogen bulbs, which have a much longer and effective life span. It will significantly reduce your electricity bills, and also allow you to grasp an eco-friendly lifestyle as no toxic elements are produced.

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