Far too often, we hear from homeowners their LED lights are too bright but flicker on a dimmer switch. When compared to incandescent there is 3 main reasons LED’s seem to much brighter.  Let us explain…


1. LED’s seem much brighter compared to incandescent bulbs because they generate a higher amount of light that can be seen by the human eye. Incandescent bulbs will heat up, which means some of the energy is going into heat and less light. With LED’s much more energy is going into light you can see.

2. Light output is measured in Lumens. Although LED can be listed with a wattage equivalent, it varies on Lumen output, exceeding the average lumen of the incandescent bulb it is designed to replace. Meaning, when you put in a LED bulb that is listed as “equivalent to a 60w light” it still puts out more lumens then the average 60w bulb, so you then see it as brighter.

3. The color of light will also change the perceived brightness. A standard incandescent emits the warm light we are all used to. But most LED’s come in a variety of different lights. Typically advertised as “bright white” or “daylight”. If you replace an incandescent with a “daylight” LED, you are going from a yellowish light to a bright white. Large jumps like that are very noticeable and can at first be very drastic.  Although, more and more homeowners are preferring the “daylight” look.


If you are feeling like the brightness of LED’s is too much, the obvious answer is to install a dimmer switch, or perhaps you already have one installed from the previous lights. Unfortunately this is where a lot of frustration starts; not all dimmers and LED light combinations work together. The lights will flicker when you dim them down, or when the dimmer says it’s off and they aren’t. Because LED’s draw such little power, the circuitry in the dimmer is designed for very power hungry incandescent lights, results in not always operating correctly. With that said, there is many more solutions and options with dimmers that are compatible with LED bulbs. A certified electrician will have the best knowledge and experience with which options and solutions are best fit.

At Proline Electric; our technicians come with the knowledge and experience to offer compatible lighting solutions best fit for your home or office.


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