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What Everybody Ought to Know About LED Lighting

Steve Sheinkopf  |  May 10, 2011  |  3 Min. Read

LED Lighting

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I have been blogging about LED for almost 5 years and searching for a good LED manufacturer for about 7 years.

LED is short for light emitting diodes. The bulb life is roughly 17-20 years. It is 90% more efficient than an incandescent and emits zero heat. An incandescent emits 300 degrees, which will force your HVAC to work harder. Simply put, the operational savings of LED is compelling to say the least.

We are changing Yale to be LED as I write this.

If, however, you are confused about LED lighting, you are not alone.

led halogen

Take a look at this pic. On the left is a Futurelight LED, on the right a regular low voltage bulb. Difference is 50 watts versus 4 watts.

LED technology is evolving faster than software these days, but here is what you need to know before you buy.

1. Kelvin temperature. Kelvin measures quality of light. 5000 degrees Kelvin is bad fluorescent lighting. 2500 is incandescent. Low voltage is 2800-3000, which is optimum for kitchen and bath.

2. Cree Chip. LED actually renders bluish light. It is the "driver" or semi-conductor which renders the white light. Cree manufactures these semi-conductors. I have not seen a non-Cree bulb with good quality light.

3. See it. Simple advice, I realize. Kelvins, lumen output, foot candles, renderings seem to be more guidelines in the industry than actual standards. Only way to be sure is see it in an actual application.

Bonus Video:

We are beta-testing this 4 watt LED in our showroom. If the product works properly, we will be able to sell it for $35 or less than half the price of similar bulbs.


A few review sites have placed this at the bottom of their articles. So here is our take: Our mission is to find reliable products for you to buy. Other review sites may say this as well.

However, we don’t love every product. Quite frankly, it costs us way too much money in repair costs to support less reliable brands.

In fact, we sell fewer brands than most appliance stores. Here is why:

We feel it is our responsibility to repair your appliances after you buy them.

We now have 30 service technicians, each averaging 8-10 calls a day Monday through Friday, plus another 110 on Saturday. That's over 30,000 service calls logged in one year.

The labor rates of fixing an appliance do not come close to the true cost in any product’s warranty period.

That is why no major retailer has a service department. It costs too much labor, money and time.

Our Blog is a bit different than most others you will read. We cannot write glowing reviews of unreliable products.

Hopefully, the bloggers and organizations who write such glowing product reviews for every brand consider servicing these products first. Only then they will understand the consequences of their marketing.

Steve Sheinkopf

My goal has always been simple: I want Yale to be the best retail experience anywhere. I have tried to create a compelling environment for customers and employees alike.

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