Anyone bought the new LED bulb yet?

They went on sale in the US today. The price is $60 but many stores are bound to discount. I’m really interested to know what they’re like as I’m sure they will be arriving in the UK in due course (at about twice the cost knowing our stores).

I have a bunch of Philips LED lights. Also IKEA brand ones (I live in the Netherlands, FWIW). I am happy with my LED lights; they give a nice light (in my opinion) and, if they have the advertised 20-year life, they are not expensive. However, a $60 price… Sounds too expensive to me! The most expensive Philips LED light I have cost me €24 (roughly $32). Granted; Philips LED lightbulbs are an import in the US, and I happen to live in Philips’ home country, but… Almost twice the price? That’s borderline crazy,in my opinion!

I’ve got the previous model in my dimmer switch-controlled ceiling light. Those work nicely, with the only problem being that the dimmer switch design is so old that the dimming range is somewhat poor as the voltage gets dropped too low for the bulbs to handle. I’ll probably buy some more LEDs once the CFLs burn out.


We bought one of those several weeks ago at Home Depot (I even got up to check and make sure it was the same!) and it was around $20, not $60. WTF?

To answer your question, it’s a great light. I find it essentially indistinguishable from incandescent, and superior to a compact florescent. I plan to replace all my bulbs with these as they wear out, but I do use compact florescent bulbs, so it will take awhile. Anyway, they’re great. I fully expect these will win over any incandescent holdouts that are truly concerned about the quality of the light (I know some are just assholes). Best bulb ever!

From the article:

Home Depot has the 17w (75w equivalent) for $40. I could use two of them in my ceiling fan which still has incandescent in it because they’re dimable.

Doing the math…based on 3 hours a day and having two 100w bulbs in there now, I would save…$136 a year. So if I lay out $80 + tax today, it would pay for itself in, what, 7 months.

Also, Philips has a $10 rebate on their website.

Argh, now, do I want to lay out $40 for them?
Actually, yes, I think I do. Again, just doing some back of the envelope math, I would save $11 a month and I know I have these lights on for more then 3 hours a day…guess I’m going back to Home depot. I just wish the had them in more then 17w, but I read something on the internet somewhere that they lose some gov’t something or other (Focus on Energy Approval maybe) once they go over 18w.

I think you lost a factor of 10 somewhere, unless you have very expensive energy. 7.5 cents/kW-h gives $13.64/year.

Yup and a 100w lightbulb is $82.13 per year. The difference is $68.49. I have two bulbs so that’s $136.98…works out exactly even using one of your numbers and I never directly calculated the cost of the LED. I figured the difference in wattage of the two bulbs (100-17)X2=166 and worked with that number.

Did you just mis-read what I wrote and did I miscalculate something? To be clear. $136 is the savings of two 17w bulbs over two 100w bulbs over one year at 3 hours a day with 7.5¢/kwh energy.

You’re computing the cost as 7.5 cents per hour of use,
7.5 cents/hr * 3 hours/day * 365 days/year (for one 100W bulb).
But each hour of use is 0.1 kW-hr (100W=0.1kW), so you should be computing
7.5 cents/(kW-hr) * 0.1 kW * 3 hr/day * 365 days/year = $8.21.

100 watts x 2 bulbs x 3 hrs per day x 365 days = 219,000 watt hours /1000 for kilowatt hours = 219 x 7.5 cents KWH = $ 16.43

17 watts x 2 bulbs x 3 hrs per day x 365 days = 37,230 watt hours /1000 for kilowatt hours = 37.23 x 7.5 cents KWH = 2.79 16.43 - 2.79 = 13.44 annual savings

Ok, yup, I was doing .75 instead of .075 I think. That’s what happens when I use my cell phone calculator while I’m at the hardware store while I let my browser try to find a connection so it can check the bulbs on Amazon and a few other sites.

Okay, so the savings is $13.44 which means they would take about 6 years to pay for themselves (they’re on for more then 3 hours a day). At this point, that’s not worth it. Realistically, I would only see a one dollar or so drop in my electric bill and I’m not going to shell out all the money right now for that. I’ll give them a few more months or a year and wait for the price to come down and the lumens to go up. CFLs were expensive to begin with and they’re only a few dollars a piece now.

Also, I see on one of the packages that it saves $142 over the life of the bulb which I beleive is rated at 22,000 hours at 3 hours per day. 22,000 hours at 3 hours per day is 20 years. 142/20=$7.1 which jives with what you two were saying.

Gah, I hate it when I make arithmetic errors.

The numbers aren’t as bad as you calculated.
You need to also figure in the cost of the 100W bulbs which you will need to replace every 1,000 hours or so (say 1x per year).

That still hardly puts a dent in it. The (17W) LEDs are $40 today, I’ll bet they’re $30 in a few months or a year and probably $10 within 5 years. Once they get to the $20ish range then I’ll pick up two for my ceiling fan, which is the only fixture in my house that I have on for any length of time with incandescents in it. For now, the savings just isn’t worth it. I was really hoping Home Depot would have some kind of Earth Day special on it.

Also, I’d really like to hold out for 100W equivalents which will probably be about a 20W.

You also have to factor in the expected drop in the cost of LED lights over time. Buying in at $60 now would be a pretty bad investment if next year you can get them for $30 while paying a extra $10 to keep the IC bulb burning.