An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...The discussion of LED lamps on our website turned out to be so active that we decided to clarify the most pressing issues of choice and operation. And they attracted an expert for this, an employee of the manufacturer of LED-lamps. Answers to the most popular questions – in our interview with Andrey Bereziner, Product Manager for LED Lamps at LEDVANCE.

What is the difference between cheap LED lamp from expensive?

An LED lamp is considered cheap, which costs 30-50 rubles, unless, of course, you take into account that you bought it as part of a promotion. On the packaging of a cheap lamp, there will most likely be “screaming” inscriptions about the service life, power, which do not correspond to reality. But, as practice shows, such parameters are overestimated by 15-20%. For example, usually a cheap lamp lasts up to six months, although its manufacturer will assure you otherwise.

An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...

The short service life is due to the use of cheaper components for production, the absence of a cooling radiator, and overclocking of the LEDs in order to “squeeze out” the brightness more. Also, manufacturers of cheap LED lamps save on driver board components. That is why their products do not have electromagnetic compatibility, which can adversely affect the operation of electrical appliances (TV, radio) and human health, including interference with the operation of pacemakers and other medical devices.

If the lamp fails, what most often burns out (driver, LEDs)?

An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...Most often, one of the diodes on the diode module burns out, the diodes are connected in series (or series-parallel), which leads to the fact that the lamp stops emitting light.

EDITORIAL. This problem is really relevant, and we have published step-by-step instructions on how to replace a burnt-out LED and return the bulb to working capacity.

Is it possible to distinguish a high-quality lamp from a low-quality lamp by visual signs?

They can be distinguished even by weight. As a rule, cheap plastic lamps do not have an aluminum “glass” at the base, and the driver board is equipped with a minimum of components. Therefore, they are lighter.

Also pay attention to how the parts of the lamps are processed, whether there are any burrs from casting on plastic, scratches on the bulb. Often, for cheap lamps, the bulb is planted on silicone and it is easy to separate it from the base of the lamp, which is very bad from the point of view of electrical safety.

An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...In good quality lamps, the bulb is firmly connected to the base; it is not possible to open it without damage. In filament lamps, it is worth looking at the position of the “tree” – the legs on which the filaments themselves are soldered: in cheap lamps, it can be crooked.

In addition, we advise you to choose a lamp not by power, but by luminous flux, since it is for cheap lamps that high power can mean low luminous flux.

Is it true that you can not use powerful LED lamps in closed shades?

It is impossible to say this unambiguously, it all depends on the specific operating conditions. For example, such powerful LED lamps are excellent for outdoor installation in regions with a temperate climate, as well as in luminaires with a degree of protection IP20-IP30. The main thing is that the manufacturer does not save on cooling details.

What color of radiation can be considered optimal in terms of eye perception?

What matters is not the color, but the spectrum of radiation. The generally accepted color is warm white, i.e. the color temperature is 2700 K. It cannot be said that a different color temperature has a bad effect on the eye, it is more a matter of influencing the psycho-emotional state and mood of a person, as well as the perception of the interior. Warm light promotes relaxation, cold light invigorates and keeps in good shape.

In order to achieve the optimal color temperature in LED lamps, a certain layer of phosphor is sprayed onto the LED plate – a light-accumulative pigment or a powder that glows in the dark, and then the plate is cut into crystals. Or the phosphor can be applied directly to the crystals themselves. Strictly speaking, this is a technology for obtaining any light temperature in the desired range, it all depends on the phosphor layer or mixture of phosphors.

They say it’s cheap LED lights flicker and it’s bad for the eyes. How to check it?

An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...In practice, the easiest way is to point a mobile phone camera at the light source. It shows the approximate, but not unambiguous presence of pulsations. On the smartphone screen, you will see running vertical black bars, the faster and more often they run, the greater the level of pulsation.

A good lamp flicker is almost not noticeable. Visible even without a phone camera, the pulsation can cause discomfort and eye fatigue if you stay in a lit room for a long time.

Filament lamps are somewhat different from ordinary ones, except for their appearance. LED?

An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...The technology of the filament itself is somewhat different, but this is also an LED lamp, only in a glass bulb (as a rule). A typical filament is an artificial sapphire or glass rod 1.5 mm in diameter and 30 mm long. Such rods are also called filament threads. Using COG (Chip-on-Glass) technology, 28 blue LEDs are placed on the thread, which are connected in series.

In some models, the filament may contain several red LEDs to achieve a warmer glow, while the total number of LEDs in the filament is also 28. The structure is coated with a layer of silicone-based phosphor on top.

An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...

The power consumption of one filament is in the range of 0.8 – 1.3 W. Gathering the required number of filaments in the flask, you can get an LED lamp of the required power. Known models of filament LED lamps containing up to 16 filament threads.

The key advantage of filament lamps is their attractive appearance, they are as close as possible in appearance to incandescent lamps, so they can be used everywhere. Their typical application now is designer light in lofts, cafes, restaurants, home use in chandeliers, floor lamps.

What is the actual service life LED lamps at home?

Very much depends on the specific product and operating conditions. For example, OSRAM lamps have a service life of up to 15,000 hours. But if there are problems with the quality of electricity in the network in the room, and the lamp itself is not cooled enough, then it will last less.

An expert on LED lamps: how they differ, why they burn out, which ones to buy...

Can LED bulbs be used with incandescent bulbs?

Yes, you can, but it is not economically feasible. Of course, if the lamp in the chandelier has burned out, and there is no LED at hand, you can also screw in the usual one. But, if you decide to switch to LED-light, it is better to change all the lamps at once and leave a few spare ones. And this is not only a question of economy: LED lamps with plastic bulbs do not break, they last much longer, they have different color temperatures … Today this is the most modern type of lamp.

FROM THE EDITOR. So far, these are all the questions that we managed to ask our expert. Are there any left? Write in the comments, and they will not go unanswered.

Photo: manufacturing companies, DepositPhotos/Fotodom.ru

Other useful materials about LED lamps:

  • How to fix an LED light bulb yourself: step by step instructions
  • How to choose an LED lamp in a store: a cheat sheet from CHIP