Have you gone to switch out an incandescent or fluorescent light bulb, nearly burning your fingertips in the process? As traditional lighting requires heat to power on and create light, the glass bulbs heat up quickly and to dangerous temperatures if touched. Due to their need for heat to simply power on, traditional light bulbs perform below average when used outdoors, especially in the fall and winter. Some lights may not be able to power on at all in below freezing weather.
However, LEDs allow you to light your outdoor lights and signs year round, even in the below freezing temperatures of winter! Unlike traditional lighting, LEDs are not hot to the touch, as they require far less heat to power. In fact, heat is the enemy of the LED light. Keep reading to learn more about why outdoor LED lighting performs so well in cold weather!
Every LED company will tell you the same thing, heat is the death of the LED. While LEDs create significantly less heat than incandescent or fluorescent bulbs, they still create heat. Incandescent bulbs are only 15% efficient at creating wattage into useful light and fluorescents are, at best, 50% efficient. Today’s LEDs are 85% efficient at turning wattage into light. However, they still create residual heat. In order to protect the diodes, LEDs are created with heat sinks, to pull and store heat away from the light.
What exactly happens to an LED if exposed to too much heat? In summary, it will fail. The LED bulbs will fail if the junction temperature in the light exceeds 185 degrees fahrenheit. The purpose of the heat sink is to make sure the operating temperature does not exceed 185 degrees by pulling the heat away into the sink and then dispersing the heat into the surrounding air.
As we now know heat is the mortal enemy of LEDs, it makes sense that LEDs perform very well in cold weather. First and foremost, the cold, outdoor temperatures naturally help the bulb stay cool. Secondly, due to the fact that they don’t require heat to turn on, they are instant on in any weather! Lastly, as LED bulbs are created using plastic, they are physically more durable and able to handle sudden temperature changes than glass traditional bulbs!
Due to LEDs cooler nature, more durable design and long lifespan, they make the perfect choice for outdoor lighting. Whether you need motion sensor security lights, signage lights or lights for unheated shops, LEDs are the best bet on the market. They turn on instantly and last upwards of 15 to 20 years, depending on usage.
Security lights, signage lights, shop lights – Sitler’s has them all! Call us today at (319) 653-2123 to request a free walk-through and proposal! There’s no better time to switch out your outdoor LED lighting than now!
Posted in LED Lighting Basics