We all know to buy light bulbs according to watts – 100 watts, 60 watts etc. But how do you buy LED’s? Picking the right LED, i.e. the right light spectrum makes the difference between you loving and/or hating LED’s !!!
(1) LED’s are rated by… lumens. 1600 lumens equal 100 watts. Most LED bulb producers state the watt equivalent on the package. So that part is easy. However, there is one much more important and additional factor you should pay close attention to when selecting LED bulbs:
(2) The cool/warm tonality of the LED bulb! It is measured in Kelvin or “K”.
Basically, for warm, natural looking lights stay between 2,700- 3,000 K. Above 3000 kelvin, lights become extremely white or cool. They have a somewhat unnatural feeling, and feel little like the old and outdated fluorescent lights.
One more tip: While I am personally a big fan of LED’s, as a kitchen designer I find today’s LED’s insufficient for task lighting such as under-cabinet lighting. As I mention in my kitchen design book “Kitchen Magic” under-cabinet lighting is one of the most important lights for the illumination of work areas like counters. At least for today LED’s fall short. For the time being, stay with zenon lights. You know them as the bright and brilliant lights in new cars – Fantastic light quality that today’s generation of LED’s can’t come close to.
However, use LED lights for general lighting. LED’s are also the perfect lighting choice inside kitchen and for that matter ANY display cabinets. Since they are cool to the touch they won’t “cook” your cabinets. Dial in the warm/cool spectrum to your taste and enjoy!
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