How do LED lights work?
As energy costs rise home and business owners are on the lookout for more efficient and cost effective materials to upgrade their properties. Making the transition from traditional light options to LED light bulbs can lower utility bills and lessen the nation's dependence on non-renewable energy resources, which accounts for 89 percent of energy production in the United States, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
An LED or light emitting diode is an electrical component with two terminals that enable the bulb to conduct electricity in only one direction, according to National Geograhic.
Connecting a diode to an electrical current produces fast moving electrons within the diode, which results in the releasing of photons that produce light. Incandescent bulbs create light by passing electricity through a filament until it becomes so hot that it glows. With CFL bulbs, an electric current is driven through a tube of gases which produces light through a reaction. As a result, incandescent bulbs release 90 percent of their energy as heat, and CFLs almost 80 percent.
LEDs can produce the same amount of light (lumens) as these traditional bulbs, while using 75 percent less energy and lasting 25 times longer. Their expected lifetime can range from 35,000 to 50,000 hours, compared to 1,000 to 2,000 hours with incandescent lights. A consumer or contractor looking to use higher performing materials for lighting should consider LED lights.