General LED Lighting, LED Lighting

What the Big Box Stores Won’t Tell You About LEDs

what big box stores wont tell you about led lights

You’ve probably heard a lot about light emitting diodes (LEDs) in recent years, and you may be wondering what all the fuss is about. LED technology is constantly evolving and improving, offering customers more and better options, but it can be hard to keep up with all the changes.

Before you make the switch to LEDs, there are a few things you should know. We’ve asked our resident experts a few questions to shed some light on the things big box stores won’t tell you about LEDs.

Why are LEDs more expensive?

LEDs actually aren’t any more expensive than other bulbs. Over their lifetime, the energy savings you’ll achieve will surpass the expense of your initial purchase by a considerable amount, making LEDs much cheaper in the long run!

Sellers may charge a higher price for LEDs for a number of reasons. As with any product that is relatively new to market, there is always a premium to pay for the research and development costs required to produce the items. There are many other factors that determine the price of LEDs, including:

  • Volume of production
  • Efficiencies in manufacturing
  • Raw material price reductions

How long do LEDs really last?

Many LED bulbs are rated to last up to 50,000 hours – that’s 50x longer than a standard incandescent bulb!

LED technology is improving rapidly. When you compare the fragility of the standard incandescent light bulbs that have been produced for over 100 years against the products of today, there really is no comparison. There are LED light bulbs that now state 15,000, 25,000 or 50,000 hours of life on the packaging, and they can genuinely be trusted to do just that. The majority of reputable brand manufacturers now offer guarantees on these products, which is something that has never before been available on conventional old technology products. To find the lifetime hour of a bulb on our website, select Specifications under the bulb you have chosen and scroll down to Lamp life (hours).


Are LED light bulbs safe to use in every light fixture?

LED light bulbs are safe to use in the majority of fixtures and fittings. There are some applications where specific LED bulbs should not be fully enclosed because they can overheat, which results in the bulb burning out prematurely. It is very important that when choosing any LED light bulb to check the packaging for suitability based on the type of fitting you have.

led light fixtureWill I need new or special light fixtures?

You do not need specialist or new light fittings to enjoy the benefits of LED energy saving light bulbs. Retrofit like-for-like LED bulb replacements are available for many existing light fittings. Simply decide which style of light bulb you require and plug them in!

Why will some LED bulbs work in old fixtures and some won’t?

When an LED light bulb fails to work in an old fitting, it is rarely the fault of the new bulb. It is very important when changing from one type of lighting technology to another to ensure the old fitting and new light bulb are compatible. The age of the fitting should be entirely irrelevant.


Are there places you should avoid using LEDs?

LEDs are an incredibly versatile light source that work in a wide-ranging number of applications and can be used just about anywhere, but always make sure to check the packaging for manufacturer guidelines and recommendations.

Are LEDs dimmable?

Most LEDs are dimmable, but not all. There are a significant number of LEDs on the market that are dimmable in most fixtures or fittings. However, there are numerous products that have been produced with the dimming technology removed in order to provide a lower cost option for those that do not require the dimming functionality.

Browse our selection of dimmer switches:

1 X 400w Trailing Push On And Off 2-Way Mirror Chrome Varilight Dimmer Switch

3 X 300w Trailing Push On And Off 2-Way Twin Plate White Varilight Dimmer Switch

2 X 250w Trailing Push On And Off 2-Way White Varilight Dimmer Switch

1 X 400w Trailing Push On And Off 2-Way White Varilight Dimmer Switch


Is it actually possible for LED bulbs to replicate incandescent light? What do I need to look for on the box in order to get an incandescent glow from an LED bulb?

Yes, it is possible to replicate incandescent light with an LED bulb. The colour options that are available now are so extensive that LEDs can replicate almost any existing light bulb.

The key piece of information to check for when looking to replicate incandescent is the colour temperature. 2700k kelvin is a warm colour that should give the same appearance as an incandescent bulb. The lower the kelvin temperature, the warmer the appearance.



We hope these answers provided you with enough illuminating insight and information to help you make a decision about your future light bulb selections. If you would like to know more about LEDs, take a look at our guides and resources.



About Nicky Walker

Nicola is a lighting specialist at The Lightbulb Company with a keen awareness of the important role lighting plays in our everyday lives. She enjoys discovering new ways in which lighting can affect science, mental health and of course, most of all, reduce our carbon footprints.