How to Choose the Right Lightbulb

With all the lighting options available today, how do you know what to install?

You can begin with deciding how each particular space in your home is used, and go from there. 

When updating your home lighting, the most important thing to remember is not to exceed the appliance’s wattage. This is a matter of both safety and energy efficiency. If the bulb draws too much power, it can overload the appliance.

But ultimately, the lighting you choose is a matter of preference and whatever helps you get the most out of your home.

The first step to home lighting is to determine how you use the different spaces in your home.

Today, there are four types of light bulbs you can choose from: LEDs, fluorescents, incandescents, and CFLs. LEDs are the most energy-efficient and are used in most modern appliances.

Whatever type of light bulb you choose, the bulb’s color (or temperature) determines the best placement for it in your home. Light bulbs are available in four different temperatures:

1. Soft white – This is the warm yellow color you will see most often with incandescent lightbulbs. It creates a relaxing, comfortable effect and is best for bedrooms and living rooms.

2. Warm white – This yellowish-white color is a good choice for bathrooms and kitchens.

3. Bright white – This color is blueish-white, and it highlights lighter fixtures, such as white and chrome. It has a more energetic feel and is a great fit for workspaces, kitchens, and bathrooms.

4. Daylight – This color has a more bluish tone than bright white. It’s a great choice for areas needing high visibility, such as vanity tables, food prep spaces, and reading nooks. 

Begin with deciding how each particular space in your home is used, and go from there.

And if you’re located in West Central Florida, remember to give the electricians at Taddeo Electric a call if you need help installing new lighting or inspecting old wiring. We’re here to help you get the most out of your home.

FAQs

The number one thing to consider when lighting your kitchen is to avoid shadows in food prep and cleaning locations. Being able to clearly see food and surfaces means safer and cleaner working conditions. 

Begin with a centrally located ceiling light fixture that matches the feel and decor of the room. Then accent stovetops, sinks, and counters with brighter lights for more controlled lighting options. 

If you’re looking to update your kitchen lighting, give our experienced electricians a call. They can walk you through all your options to determine the best setup for your home.

If you feel like you’re always burning through light bulbs, there are a few things to consider:

1. Are the wires in the light fixture loose?

You can check this by turning off power to the fixture (by unplugging it or flipping the breaker in your electric panel) and checking for loose or damaged wiring. Issues with the flow of electricity can cause the fixture to pull more energy, overheat, and shorten the light bulb’s lifespan.

2. Are the bulbs loose or not connected properly?

Similar to loose wiring, bulbs that are not connected properly to the fixture can interrupt the flow of electricity. The most noticeable sign of this issue is flickering lights. Tightening the bulb usually solves the problem. But if the socket itself is worn down, it will need to be replaced.

3. Are you using the correct type of bulb?

It’s important to pay attention to wattage when installing light bulbs into fixtures. Your fixture should be labeled with the recommended wattage, which you should not exceed. Putting a 120-watt lightbulb into a fixture that is only rated for 60 watts leads to overheating, shortens the bulb’s life, and is a
fire hazard.

Choosing the right kind of bulb can also help you get the most from your light fixtures. CFL bulbs work best when they are left on for long periods. Frequently switching these bulbs on and off wears down the electrode and shortens its lifespan. LED bulbs respond better to frequent use and are generally more energy-efficient.

4. Are the light bulb and dimmer switch compatible?

Older dimmer switches were designed to work with incandescent lightbulbs and can damage CFL and LED bulbs. Upgrading your dimmer switch should solve the problem – just remember to purchase bulbs designed to work with dimmer technology.

5. Is too much voltage going through the outlet?

A standard outlet produces 120-volts of electricity, but electrical supply issues can cause too much power to come through the outlet. This excess power can burn out bulbs quicker. You can use a voltage tester or multimeter to check your outlet. If the voltage is higher than 125 volts, avoid using the outlet until a certified electrician can identify the source of the problem.

6. Is the fixture experiencing too much vibration?

A problem typically found with ceiling fan light fixtures or garage door openers, too much vibration can damage lightbulb filaments. Consider using LED bulbs (which don’t use filaments) or “rough service” bulbs to get a longer life expectancy from your bulb.

7. Are the light bulb and dimmer switch compatible?

Older dimmer switches were designed to work with incandescent lightbulbs and can damage CFL and LED bulbs. Upgrading your dimmer switch should solve the problem – just remember to purchase bulbs designed to work with dimmer technology.

8. Is too much voltage going through the outlet?

A standard outlet produces 120-volts of electricity, but electrical supply issues can cause too much power to come through the outlet. This excess power can burn out bulbs quicker. You can use a voltage tester or multimeter to check your outlet. If the voltage is higher than 125 volts, avoid using the outlet until a certified electrician can identify the source of the problem.

9. Is the fixture experiencing too much vibration?


A problem typically found with ceiling fan light fixtures or garage door openers, too much vibration can damage lightbulb filaments. Consider using LED bulbs (which don’t use filaments) or “rough service” bulbs to get a longer life expectancy from your bulb.

10. Is the insulation too close to your recessed lights (“can” lights)?

Recessed lights are installed inside the ceiling and tend to be surrounded by insulation, causing them to overheat. Newer can lights are typically IC-rated and can therefore safely come into contact with insulation. If you have older lights, be sure that any insulation is at least 3 inches away from the fixture, or the overheated bulbs can pose a fire hazard. 

If the solution to your burned-out bulbs is more complicated than making a few adjustments, don’t hesitate to call in the experts. As always, our licensed electricians are available to assess your electrical issues and provide solutions to keep your home and family safe. 

Begin with a centrally located ceiling light fixture that matches the feel and decor of the room. Then accent stovetops, sinks, and counters with brighter lights for more controlled lighting options. 

It’s not uncommon for a light switch to feel slightly warm when it has been in the ON position for a while. But if a light switch feels hot, it’s a sign that something is wrong and could potentially pose a fire hazard.

There are three main reasons why a light switch may be hot to the touch:

  • An overloaded circuit – The light fixture or other appliance attached to the switch may be drawing more power than the switch is designed to handle. In this case, the switch will need to be upgraded.
  • Faulty wiring – Sometimes wiring can become loose or damaged, and it needs to be replaced by a licensed electrician.
  • A failing light switch – A light switch does wear out, and it may be time to have it replaced.
  • High wattage – If the lights or light has a very high wattage, it may be causing the switch plate to feel warm.

If you notice any of these signs, give our qualified electricians a call. They will be able to locate the source of the problem and help find the best solution for you.

•  The lights dim or flicker when a major appliance is in use,

•  The light switch is not staying in the ON or OFF position, or

•  Your home operates on a fuse system (instead of a circuit system).

Get Help From Our Experts!

Need Our Expert Electricians to Handle It For You? If you are in West Central Florida, contact us now for any residential or commercial service needs.

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