Halogen Lights vs. Incandescent

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Both incandescent and halogen bulbs are widely chosen by consumers to serve their lighting needs. Incandescents are inefficient for the amount of power they draw but that has yet to affect their popularity. Both types of bulbs have many uses and, of course, possess advantages and disadvantages.


Halogen bulbs are a more efficient version of the incandescent bulb. These bulbs emit very bright white light. Their light output will not diminish as the bulb ages. Halogen bulbs are also known for their consistent ability to start up with no flickering.


The idea of the incandescent light bulb is nearly 120 years old and little has been needed in the way of innovation to increase popularity. An incandescent light bulb glows when electricity heats wire filaments. However, these light bulbs give off more heat than light in terms of energy output. This is why the classic incandescent light bulb is considered inefficient for the amount of electricity it drains.


Incandescent light bulbs fade with age, unlike halogen bulbs. An average incandescent bulb will last anywhere between 750 and 1,000 hours. An average halogen bulb will last anywhere between 2,250 and 3,500 hours. A 75 watt incandescent bulb produces around 1,180 lumens of light while a 75 watt halogen bulb lets off about 1,300 lumens. Both incandescent and halogen light bulbs are available in a variety of sizes and voltages.


Standard incandescent light bulbs are great for everyday use in the home where “soft” light is desired. Some incandescent light bulbs are used not only for their light output but for their heat output as well. Heat lamps found in reptile tanks utilize the heat producing capabilities of incandescent bulbs to warm small, contained environments. Halogen bulbs keep a constant light output throughout their lives which is one of the reasons why they are widely used in car headlights. This type of bulb is ideal for outdoor situations like lighting up a deck or patio. Halogen lights can also be used in the home where intense light is desired.


Incandescent bulbs are generally much cheaper than halogen bulbs. Obviously, the higher the wattage, the more a light bulb of any type will cost. A 75 watt incandescent bulb will generally cost less than 65 cents per bulb. A 75 watt halogen bulb can average about $4 per bulb.

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