LED lighting can be used in any application traditional lighting is used, with one very specific exception. Traditional bulbs placed in enclosed fixtures, think of historic street lights, glass-encased overhead lighting and the like, are not so easily replaced by LEDs. Why? LEDs number one enemy is heat, which happens to be the best friend of fluorescent or incandescent lighting. Where a traditional bulb might perform well in an enclosed fixture, it could be the death of your LEDs.
LEDs and Heat
LEDs deal with heat much differently than other bulbs. They use a heat sink to draw heat away from the diodes, as excessive heat can cause the bulb to fail. This problem is exacerbated when an LED light is installed in a ventless enclosed fixture. The heat sink may be pulling heat away from the diode, but it is then releasing it into an enclosed area surrounding the entire bulb. But, are all LEDs a no-go when it comes to enclosed fixtures?
Enclosed Fixture Suitable LEDs
If you are looking to replace your bulbs with LEDs in an enclosed fixture, be sure to look for bulbs that are rated for such an application. However, these bulbs can be hard to come by and may require more research.
The way enclosed fixture suitable LEDs differ from regular LEDs is they are designed to be used in these light fixtures without overheating, by regulating the current and therefore the temperature. You may also choose to replace your totally enclosed fixture for a partially enclosed fixture suitable for all LEDs.
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Posted in LED Installation and Maintenance