Three Common Issues with LEDs & How To Avoid Them

By Jeff Brain | May 18, 2017

While LEDs are considered by many to be the top sustainable lighting product on the market, many LED lamps face a similar set of issues. While these can be easily avoided, many people investing in these technologies do not realize the issues which can crop up. Here are three of the most common issues these lamps face, as well as tips to avoid them.

1. High Blue-Spectrum Light

A common issue LED lamps encounter is that many of them produce an extremely high level of blue-spectrum light. Overexposing the body to this light can drastically reduce the melatonin production along with other neurotransmitters. This can have a profound effect on sleep, making occupants groggy and unfocused. This wavelength of light can also contribute to poor mental and physical health, worsening seasonal affective disorder, increasing sick days, and negatively affecting business budgets. To avoid this ensure that your lamps are broad-spectrum, minimizing the presence of blue light.

2. Intermittent Flickering

Another commonly seen issue with LEDs is that they often intermittently flicker.while this is in most cases nearly imperceptible, human eyes struggle to adjust to each minute change in light. Because of that, these rapid changes in brightness can create repetitive eye strain and contribute to stress induced migraines. The cause of this issue is most frequently the use of cheap or mismatched internal lighting ballasts, though it can also be caused by the drivers. When selecting a system, ensure that they utilize high quality, internally compatible, components to guarantee a healthier, more stable source of light.

3. Loss of Intensity

One of the biggest draws to LEDs is their long lifespan, however, it may not be quite as long as advertised. While to the average lifespan of these lamps is around 50,000 hours, many systems lose intensity over time. In some cases producing as little as 80% of their original intensity after just 8,000 hours. This results in a longer period for returns on the investment, as well as the cost of replacing lamps when their efficiency drops below a usable 70%. This issue is caused by low quality control chips within the individual lamps. Micro-cracks in the body of the chips contribute to loss of efficiency. Make sure that when researching the LED product you intend to use, you choose a product with high quality chips.

To learn more about other sustainable lighting methods on the market, download our free eBook  A Comprehensive Guide to Sustainable Lighting.

(Photo: Forte Chance Piedmont, CC.)

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