LED Isn’t Just for Decoration

What? You haven’t tried LED light bulbs in your home yet?


I’ll bet you just took down a bunch of LED Christmas lights outside. You liked them for their energy efficiency, so why not continue this inside? LED isn’t just for decoration any more.

Light bulbs have seen more changes in the last decade or so than in their first decade. Way back in the 1870’s when Thomas Edison was working on perfecting his first light bulb, he could hardly have imagined how we would be lighting our homes some 130+ years later. The light bulb was invented as early as 1802. That is to say that’s when the first electricity was passed through a filament and produced light. Edison’s light bulb was ready to show to the public in 1879. So, 70+ years between idea and practicality. That time has been shortened, but is very similar for LED bulbs.

Light-Emitting Diodes, LED’s, have been around since the early 1960’s. It wouldn’t be until the turn of the 21st century, though, that light bulbs made from them would become practical. Like all new inventions, or new developments of old inventions, somewhere along the way comes a tipping point where the cost drops like a rock and the practicality skyrockets upwards.

Over the years, I have worked with a few power companies in the Rocky Mountain region. They have put in place large rebate programs to convert to the use of Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs (CFL’s). Those too, were around since 1990 or so, but expensive and not very well liked. Suddenly, the price was lowered and they sold by the millions. Still, they were not well received by a lot of people. (My wife included)

These same power companies wanted a better solution. They wanted to rebate bulbs that saved a lot of electricity and that consumers really liked, so they would keep using them. It’s either this, or build massively expensive power plants that take decades to complete. LED bulbs promised this, but they were still $40-$50 per bulb and only so-so in performance. Along comes the free market and voila, now we have LED bulbs all over the place. They’re wonderful, the light they give is great and they function just like the old-fashioned bulbs we’re all used to. They last for years and years. The price of LED’s is now down to just a few dollars per bulb. I have put them all over our house and my wife doesn’t even know it. She just likes the light. I like the lower electricity bill, and not having to change bulbs every year.

Shop smart for LED bulbs. They’re not all created equal and they don’t all have familiar brand names on them. There are LED bulbs in some stores that only last a year or so and don’t put out as much light as the incandescent bulbs. Brands are changing and yes, you can trust new names, like Feit. Your local Ace Hardware store stocks a wide variety of LED bulbs. Many sizes, shapes, wattages and we have the helpful folks behind them to make it easier to decipher what bulb you may need.

So, don’t wait, get to Ace, try some LED bulbs, you’ll be glad you did!

Tell them Brad Nale sent you!