Guide to Emergency Lighting

Emergency Lighting

Emergency lighting is lighting that works during a power cut, normally using a battery for up to 3 hours of standby power. Emergency lights might be anything from green signage lights to everyday fittings that blend into standard lighting schemes.

Escape & Standby

Emergency lighting falls into one of two categories: escape lighting or standby lighting.
Standby lighting allows work to continue during a power loss, but is not a legal requirement.
Escape lighting is far more critical and subdivided into three categories:

  • Escape route lighting identifies and lights exit routes and enables safe evacuation of a building.
  • Open area (anti-panic) lighting is intended to avoid panic in large spaces (above 60m²) where occupants are likely to gather.
  • High risk task area lighting enables hazardous processes to be closed down so that operators or occupants are not put at needless/further risk.

Emergency lights and their roles are defined by British Standard 5266-1, which is a code of practice for emergency lighting. Up-to-date advice on how to conform to this standard is available for download (PDF) from the ICEL website.

Maintained & Non-Maintained

Emergency lights generally come in maintained or non-maintained forms:

    • A maintained emergency light functions as a regular fitting but stays switched on during a power cut.
    • A non-maintained light is kept switched off and only triggers when the mains supply is lost.

Maintained lights are required in premises where visitors may be unfamiliar with their surroundings (e.g. cinemas, nightclubs, public buildings), while non-maintained lights are used more in private workplaces.

Please take a look at our full range of Emergency Lighting.
For more advice, inspiration and news, check our Lighting Advice section.

Solar garden lights – ideal for entertaining

Low-priced, easy to install and free to run, solar garden lights are increasing in popularity. Most of them use LED technology, mainly because it needs very little energy. For homes and hospitality settings, creating an attractive night-time garden has never been more affordable or eco-friendly.

Making the most of summertime

Sunny days in Britain are never assured, so when they occur we all seize the opportunity to relax. Maybe we’ll have friends round and enjoy a little something to eat and drink outside. These are moments to savour. As day drifts into night, solar lights keep the social mood going without extra expense. With no mains leads to consider, they can be positioned almost anywhere.

For hoteliers or pub owners, good outdoor lighting is often vital; it provides extra income potential. Extending the summertime mood into evening is easy with the right choice of lighting, and what better choice than one that captures the sun’s energy?

Free Lighting All Year Round

Contrary to common belief, solar panels don’t need direct sunlight in order to work. While it’s true that sunshine makes recharging quicker, solar lights still function in cloudy weather. Many have a manual override switch, which lets you turn lights off when not needed and preserve the battery charge. This also preserves the lifespan of the LEDs or other light source.

Solar Garden Lights – choosing the right products

Garden lighting should suit the style of the property, if a specific style exists. By highlighting features of the garden, you’ll add mood. Lighting darker areas makes a garden more welcoming and creates a greater feeling of space.

A patio or decking area can be bordered by a series of stake lights which can come in kits of 4 and offer great value for money. These are useful for decorative effect or to highlight edges for safety purposes.

A more powerful wall or fence fitting is a good choice for functional outdoor lighting. You might use this to light a table.

For decorating trees, Solar String Lights fit the bill. These sparkling lights create a relaxing mood in any garden. They are also ideal for use around fences, walls, trellises, gazebos and hedges.

LED Outdoors

Aside from being energy efficient and long lasting, LED-based solar lights are resistant to shock and vibration and work flawlessly down to about -20°C. This technology is tougher than rival light forms and perfectly suited to outdoor use.

Why not take a look at our full range of solar lights?
For news, inspiration and advice, please take a look at our Lighting Advice section.

The light bulb phase out schedule

led bulbs

In 2009, the EU began phasing out of inefficient bulbs in favour of energy-efficient alternatives. The incandescent light bulb has existed for 130 years, but a global need to reduce carbon emissions has made it obsolete. Incandescent bulbs are inefficient because they waste most of their energy creating heat.

New bulbs on the block

The natural successors to the incandescent bulb are CFLs and LED bulbs. These use 60-90% less energy than incandescent lighting and offer a much longer lifespan.

EU phase-out timetable

On 18th March 2009, a timetable was created by EU states outlining the gradual withdrawal of incandescent bulbs from production. Most of the phase-out has taken place, but latter stages of the schedule have been reviewed. The current chronology (May 2016) is as follows:

 

1st September 2009 Phase-out of clear 100W and above incandescent bulbs.
Non-clear (frosted/pearl) bulbs require an ‘A’ energy rating (effectively meaning they must be CFL or LED).
1st September 2010 Phase-out of 75W clear incandescent bulbs.
1st September 2011 Phase-out of 60W clear incandescent bulbs.
1st September 2012 Phase-out of all remaining clear incandescent bulbs (i.e. 40W and 25W).
24th February 2016 Phase-out of some bulbs previously defined as special purpose, including incandescent rough service bulbs, high/low temperature bulbs and clear glass decorative filament bulbs (tinted glass models still permitted).
1st September 2016 Phase-out of directional mains-voltage halogen bulbs (i.e. GU10, PAR, R-type).
1st September 2018 Phase-out of non-directional halogen bulbs (i.e. candle, GLS, globe, golf ball).

Special-purpose items such as fridge and oven lamps, halogen capsules and linear R7s bulbs are untouched by these bans, as they cannot be adequately replaced by other technologies.
Low voltage halogen lamps (e.g. MR16) remain available in the EU. Unlike 240V equivalents, these can achieve a ‘B’ energy rating by using an IR coating in their design. This ensures the long-term survival of some 12V halogen products.

About energy ratings…

On the 1st September 2013, EU Regulation 874/2012 came into force. Among other things, this introduced A+ and A++ energy classes to cater for LED improvements and deleted defunct F and G classes. From the 1st March 2014, all light fittings entering the market and sold directly to end-users must be labelled with the energy rating of compatible or supplied bulbs (see this article). Fittings installed with non-replaceable light sources must be identified at the point of sale.

For more lighting news and information, please take a look at our Lighting Advice section.

CFL & Tube Code Lookup Charts

Updated on 26/03/2020

If you have any questions regarding replacement tubes, please call our sales team on 0800 074 8316.

Finding the exact linear fluorescent tube or pin-fitting CFL that you need is rarely a straight-forward task, especially when faced with numerous product codes and reference numbers. Here at Lyco we stock a wide range of great value fluorescents at competitive prices and as well as offering most of the popular tubes types available, we also stock many compatible alternatives.

If you have a reference code but can’t find exactly what you need, why not take a look at our reference charts below? Simply use the links and find the code on the relevant sheet, or for a quick cheat, press Ctrl+F and search for your desired code. Once you’ve found it, click the Lyco equivalent link at the start of the row to be taken to the appropriate fluorescent that you need.

Fluorescent Tubes

T5 High Efficency Tubes T5 High Output Tubes Mini T5 Tubes T8 Tubes

Compact Fluorescent

2-Pin CFL 4-Pin CFL
2-Pin Single 4-Pin Single
2-Pin Double 4-Pin Double
2-Pin Triple 4-Pin Triple
4-Pin Long

 

Fluorescent Tube Manufacturer’s Number Lookup Chart

 

T5 High Efficency Tubes

Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent T5 LongLast™ High Efficiency Lumilux T5 HE Master TL5 HE T5 Luxline Plus FHE
72952 F14W/T5/835/LL FH 14W/835HE
72953 F14W/T5/840/LL FH14W/840HE 14W/840 FHE14W/840
10308 F14W/T5/865/LL FH14W/865HE 14W/865 FHE14W/860
72954 F21W/T5/835/LL FH21W/835HE
72955 F21W/T5/840/LL FH21W/840HE 21W/840 FHE21W/840
10309 F21W/T5/865/LL FH21W/865HE 21W/865 FHE21W/860
72956 F28W/T5/835/LL FH28W/835HE
72957 F28W/T5/840/LL FH28W/840HE 28W/840 FHE28W/840
10310 F28W/T5/865/LL FH28W/865HE 28W/865 FHE28W/860
72958 F35W/T5/835/LL FH35W/835HE
72959 F35W/T5/840/LL FH35W/840HE 35W/840 FHE35W/840
10311 F35W/T5/865/LL FH35W/865HE 35W/865 FHE35W/860

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T5 High Output Tubes

Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent T5 LongLast™ High Output Lumilux T5 HO Master TL5 HO T5 Luxline Plus FHO
72960 F24W/T5/835/LL FH24W/835HO
72961 F24W/T5/840/LL FH24W/840HO 24W/840 FHO24W/840
10312 F24W/T5/865/LL FH24W/865HO 24W/865 FHO24W/860
72963 F39W/T5/840/LL FH39W/840HO 39W/840 FHO39W/840
10313 F39W/T5/865/LL FH39W/865HO 39W/865 FHO39W/860
72964 F49W/T5/835/LL FH49W/835HO
72965 F49W/T5/840/LL FH49W/840HO 49W/840 FHO49W/840
10314 F49W/T5/865/LL FH49W/885HO 49W/865 FHO49W/860
72966 F54W/T5/835/LL FH54W/835HO
72967 F54W/T5/840/LL FH54W/840HO 54W/840 FHO54W/840
10315 F54W/T5/865/LL FH54W/865HO 54W/865 FHO54W/860
72968 F80W/T5/840/LL FH80W/840HO 80W/840 FHO80W/840

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Mini T5 Tubes

Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent T5 Miniature Standard Energy Saver (Basic) T5 short TL Mini T5 Standard
1315 F4W/T5/35
1317 F6W/T5/35
1319 F8W/T5/29 F8W/129
1320 F8W/T5/35
1321 F8W/T5/33 L8W/640 8W/33-640 F8W/133

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T8 Tubes

Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent T8 Polylux XLR™ LongLast™ Lumilux XT T8 Master TL-D Xtra
72594 F58W/T8/840/POLYLUX/LL L58W/840XT 58W/840
T8 Polylux XLR™ Lumilux T8 Master TL-D Super 80 T8 Luxline Plus
10264 FF15W/T8/835 POLYLUX
10265 F15W/T8/840/POLYLUX L15W/840 15W/840 F15W/840
1701 F18W/T8/830/POLYLUX L18W/830 18W/830 F18W/830
50205 F18W/T8/835/POLYLUX L18W/835 F18W/835
1696 F18W/T8/840/POLYLUX L18W/840 18W/840 F18W/840
8150 F18W/T8/860/POLYLUX L18W/865 18W/865 F18W/860
10266 F30W/T8/830/POLYLUX L30W/830 30W/830 F30W/830
10267 F30W/T8/840/POLYLUX L30W/840 30W/840 F30W/840
1702 F36W/T8/830/POLYLUX L36W/830 36W/830 F36W/830
50202 F36W/T8/835/POLYLUX L36W/835 F36W/835
1697 F36W/T8/840/POLYLUX L36W/840 36W/840 F36W/840
8610 F36W/T8/860/POLYLUX L36W/865 36W/865 F36W/865
1703 F58W/T8/830/POLYLUX L58W/830 58W/830 F58W/830
50203 F58W/T8/835/POLYLUX L58W/835 F58W/835
1698 F58W/T8/840/POLYLUX L58W/840 58W/840 F58W/840
8843 F58W/T8/860/POLYLUX L58W/865 58W/865 F58W/860
50204 F70W/T8/835/POLYLUX L70W/835 F70W/840
1699 F70W/T8/840/POLYLUX L70W/840 70W/840

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Compact Fluorescent Manufacturer’s Number Lookup Chart

2-Pin CFLs


Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Biax™S 2pin Dulux S PLS Lynx-S
71283 F5BX/827 DULUX S 5W/827 PL-S 5W/827/2P Lynx S 5W/827
71290 F5BX/840 DULUX S 5W/840 PL-S 5W/840/2P Lynx S 5W/840
71284 F7BX/830 DULUX S 7W/830 PL-S 7W/830/2P Lynx S 7W/830
10290 F7BX/835 Lynx S 7W/835
71285 F7BX/840 DULUX S 7W/840 PL-S 7W/840/2P Lynx S 7W/840
10291 F9BX/835 Lynx S 9W/835
71287 F9BX/840 DULUX S 9W/840 PL-S 9W/840/2P Lynx S 9W/840
71288 F11BX/830 DULUX S 11W/830 PL-S 11W/830/2P Lynx S 11W/830
10292 F11BX/835 Lynx S 11W/835
71289 F11BX/840 DULUX S 11W/840 PL-S 11W/840/2P Lynx S 11W/840

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Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent Biax™D 2pin Dulux-D PL-C Lynx-D
71299 F10DBX/830 DULUX D 10W/830 PL-C 10W/830/2P Lynx D 10W/830
10293 F10DBX/835 Lynx D 10W/835
71300 F10DBX/840 DULUX D 10W/840 PL-C 10W/840/2P Lynx D 10W/840
71301 F13DBX/830 DULUX D 13W/830 PL-C 13W/830/2P Lynx D 13W/830
71302 F13DBX/840 DULUX D 13W/840 PL-C 13W/840/2P Lynx D 13W/840
71303 F18DBX/830 DULUX D 18W/830 PL-C 18W/830/2P Lynx D 18W/830
10295 F18DBX/835 PL-C 18W/835/2P Lynx D 18W/835
71304 F18DBX/840 DULUX D 18W/840 Lynx D 18W/840
71305 F26DBX/830 DULUX D 26W/830 PL-C 26W/830/2P Lynx D 26W/830
10296 F26DBX/835 Lynx D 26W/835
71306 F26DBX/840 DULUX D 26W/21840 PL-C 26W/840/2P Lynx D 26W/840

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Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent Biax™T 2pin Dulux T PL-T Lynx-S
72071 F13TBX/830/A/2P DULUX T 13W/830 PL-T 13W/830/2P
72072 F13TBX/840/A/2P DULUX T 13W/840 PL-T 13W/840/2P
72073 F18TBX/830/A/2P DULUX T 18W/830 PL-T 18W/830/2P Lynx T 18W/830
72074 F18TBX/84O/A/2P DULUX T 18W/840 PL-T 18W/840/2P Lynx T 18W/840
72075 F26TBX/830/A/2P DULUX T 26W/830 PL-T 26W/830/2P Lynx T 26W/830
72076 F26TBX/840/A/2P DULUX T 26W/840 PL-T 26W/840/2P Lynx T 26W/840

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4-Pin CFLs

 

Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent Biax™S/E 4pin Dulux-SE PLS Lynx – SE
72053 F5BX/827/4P DULUX S/E 5W827 PL-S 5W/827/4P Lynx SE 5W/827
72054 F5BX/840/4P DULUX S/E 5W/840 PL-S 5W/840/4P Lynx SE 5W/840
72055 F7BX/827/4P DULUX S/E 7W/827 PL-S 7W/827/4P Lynx SE 7W/827
72056 F7BX/840/4P DULUX S/E 7W/840 PL-S 7W/840/4P Lynx SE 7W/840
72057 F9BX/827/4P DULUX S/E 9W/827 PL-S 9W/827/4P Lynx SE 9W/827
72058 F9BX/840/4P DULUX S/E 9W/840 PL-S 9W/840/4P Lynx SE 9W/840
72059 F11BX/840/4P DULUX S/E 11W/840 PL-S 11W/840/4P Lynx SE 11W/840

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Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent Biax™D/E 4pin Dulux-DE PL-C Lynx-DE
10297 F10DBX/830/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 10W/830 PL-C 10W/830/4P Lynx DE 10W/830
10299 F10DBX/840/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 10W/840 PL-C 10W/840/4P Lynx DE 10W/840
71315 F13DBX/830/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 13W/830 PL-C 13W/830/4P Lynx DE 13W/830
71316 F13DBX/840/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 13W/840 PL-C 13W/840/4P Lynx DE 13W/840
71317 F18DBX/830/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 18W/830 PL-C 18W/830/4P Lynx DE 18W/830
10301 F18DBX/835/4P/EOL Lynx DE 18W/835
71318 F18DBX/840/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 18W/840 PL-C 18W/840/4P Lynx DE 18W/840
71319 F26DBX/830/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 26W/830 PL-C 26W/830/4P Lynx DE 26W/830
10302 F26DBX/835/4P/EOL Lynx DE 26W/835
71320 F26DBX/840/4P/EOL DULUX D/E 26W/840 PL-C 26W/840/4P Lynx DE 26W/840

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Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent Biax™T/E 4pin Dulux T/E PL-T Lynx- TE
10303 F13TBX/835/A/4P/EOL
10304 F18TBX/835/A/4P/EOL
10305 F26TBX/835/A/4P/EOL
10306 F32TBX/835/A/4P/EOL
72077 F13TBX/830/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 13W/830 PL-T 13W/830/4P
72078 F13TBX/840/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 13W/840 PL-T 13W/840/4P
72079 F18TBX/830/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 18W/830 PL-T 18W/830/4P Lynx TE 18W/830
72080 F18TBX/840/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 18W/840 PL-T 18W/840/4P Lynx TE 18W/840
72081 F26TBX/830/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 26W/830 PL-T 26W/830/4P Lynx TE 26W/830
72082 F26TBX/840/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 26W/840 PL-T 26W/840/4P Lynx TE 26W/840
72083 F32TBX/830/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 32W/830 PL-T 32W/830/4P Lynx TE 32W/830
72084 F32TBX/840/A/4P/EOL DULUX T/E 32W/840 PL-T 32W/840/4P Lynx TE 32W/840

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Lyco GE OSRAM PHILIPS HAVELLS SYLVANIA
Equivalent Biax™L 4pin Dulux-L PL-L Lynx L & Lynx-LE
72061 F18BX/830 DULUX L 18W/830 PL-L 18W/830/4P Lynx L 18W/830
10285 F18BX/835 PL-L 18W/835/4P Lynx L 18W/835
72062 F18BX/840 DULUX L 18W/840 PL-L 18W/840/4P Lynx L 18W/840
72063 F24BX/830 DULUX L 24W/830 PL-L 24W/830/4P Lynx L 24W/830
10286 F24BX/835 PL-L 24W/835/4P Lynx L 24W/835
72064 F24BX/840 DULUX L 24W/840 PL-L 24W/840/4P Lynx L 24W/840
72065 F36BX/830 DULUX L 36W/830 PL-L 36W/830/4P Lynx L 36W/830
10287 F36BX/835 PL-L 36W/835/4P Lynx L 36W/835
72066 F36BX/840 DULUX L 36W/840 PL-L 36W/840/4P Lynx L 36W/840
72067 F40BX/830 DULUX L 40W/830 PL-L 40W/830/4P Lynx LE 40W/830
10288 F40BX/835 PL-L 40W/835/4P Lynx LE 40W/835
72068 F40BX/840 DULUX L 40W/840 PL-L 40W/840/4P Lynx LE 40W/840
72069 F55BX/830 DULUX L 55W/830 PL-L 55W/830/4P Lynx LE 55W/830
10289 F55BX/835 PL-L 55W/835/4P Lynx LE 55W/835
72070 F55BX/840 DULUX L 55W/840 PL-L 55W/840/4P Lynx LE 55W/840

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Still need help?

If you still can’t find what you are looking for and would like some help, please do not hesitate to give our customer services a call on 0800 074 8316 and they will be pleased to go through your options and requirements.

Looking for more advice? Try our Lighting Advice section.

LED ceiling lights – our top 10

LED ceiling lights offer many benefits over fluorescent or incandescent alternatives. Aside from their incredible energy-efficiency and lifespan, the compact size of LEDs allows more flexibility in design. LED downlights and ceiling panels often fit into relatively shallow ceiling voids and are a cleaner, more hygienic lighting solution for hospitals, schools and offices. Surface-mounted fittings are also transformed in scope and performance by LED lamps.

At Lyco we keep a watchful eye on lighting innovation and trends and select only the best products for our customers. Here are our top 10 LED ceiling lights:

Ten top LED ceiling lights

Robus LED Fire-Rated Downlight

This downlight offers a 25,000 hour lifespan and a 3-year manufacturer’s guarantee. Fire-rated, this downlight is tested for 90-minute ceilings, allowing crucial evacuation time for upper floors during a fire. Its impressive energy-efficiency easily surpasses the requirements of Part L Building Regulations.

Cavan 8W LED Downlight

Luceco 5W LED Downlight

To perfectly mimic the high quality light of a 50W low-voltage halogen equivalent, this superb downlight uses a special LED module with an 5W Sharp Cob LED chip. Its smooth, crisp light is delivered in a well-controlled beam with extremely low glare.

High Performance Downlight

There are two main differences between these two fittings. The first is longevity – the Sysion has a 50,000 hour lifespan against the 35,000 hours of the Cavan, so it’s ideal for long hours of use. The second is that it can be customised via interchangeable bezels and diffusers.

LED Light Panel

LED light panel - cool white

An improvement over old fluorescent modular ceiling fittings, this panel fits directly into existing ceiling grids. Its 50,000 hour lifespan and energy-efficient performance will significantly reduce maintenance and running costs. This is an ideal fitting for offices, schools, hospitals, and many other environments.

Rondure Pendant

Contemporary fittings like this Rondure pendant are often suspended low over dining tables or desks. This concentrates their light and creates a feeling of intimacy, even in a busy setting. A Decorative Filament Bulb is good for this purpose, as it’s attractive look complements the gold inner perfectly . The Rondure is ideal for restaurants, cafes, bars, or the home.

LED Batten

5ft Vulcan LED Twin Batten

LED lights offer a variety of extra benefits over even the best modern fluorescent tubes. This LED batten not only slices a third off the running costs of a T8 fluorescent tube, but it’s also longer-lasting, tougher, immune to multi-switching, contains no mercury and is suitable for exterior use. Need we say more?

Prodisc LED Flush Fitting with Microwave Motion Sensor

This excellent LED flush fitting automatically switches on when it detects movement. To add to its capabilities it can be wired to a series of slave fittings, so that multiple lights are switched on by the same sensor. With its cool white 5000K output, the Prodisc is ideal as a money-saving LED fitting in environments such as hospitals or schools.

Carina LED Flush with Microwave Sensor

The Carina is a great alternative to the Prodisc. With its IP65 rating, this dust-tight and water-resistant luminaire can be installed almost anywhere, including outdoors or in bathrooms and washrooms. The subtle warm white light of the Carina is ideal for hospitality settings and residential use.

Davida 3-light LED Spotlight

Tate 4-Light Spotlight

Modern spotlight fittings such as the Tate often come with integrated LEDs, so you’ll get years of service before any replacement is required. The Tate is a ceiling bar with fully adjustable light heads. Because the beam of an LED carries no IR heat and little or no UV, it is better suited for lighting sensitive objects such as artworks or textiles.

Acorn LED 3-Light and Track Kit

A track lighting system offers a little more versatility than a ceiling bar, as each light can be freely moved along a length of track as well as being angle-adjustable. The Acorn is ideal for lighting rooms and displays that are often altered. This light kit, which consists of 1-metre length of track and three spotlights, can be extended to a maximum 30 metres using separately available track lengths.

Investing in LED ceiling lights

Whether you’re an architect, interior designer, specifier, or end-user, LED ceiling lights deliver a new level of lighting performance whilst drastically reducing energy bills and the carbon footprint.

Why not take a look at our full range of LED ceiling lights?

Looking for more inspiration and advice? Take a look at our Lighting Advice section.

LED Lighting guide for dummies

Three decades ago, LEDs were only really known for being the power indicators on electronic devices, as they were too weak to be of much use elsewhere. Today, however, LED is leading the way in the fight to produce increasingly efficient lighting by dramatically reducing energy consumption.

The high-brightness blue LED was introduced in 1993. Twenty times brighter than its green or red predecessors, this was the long-awaited enabler of white LED light. Then, as now, white LED light was produced by blending red, green, and blue light or by using a blue LED with a yellow phosphor. From this point on LED bulbs started their journey to take over the world of lighting.

All very well, but what is an LED?

The real science bit…

A Light Emitting Diode (LED) is a device that allows electrical current to flow in only one direction. It includes two conductive materials, placed in contact with each other. Electricity is applied to the diode so that atoms in one material are excited to a higher energy level. That energy is then released in the form of electrons into the second material, and this release of energy creates light.

How does this differ from traditional lighting?

Traditional incandescent lighting produces light directly by heat. A thin tungsten filament is warmed to about 2500°C by an electric current. Filament bulbs use 90% of their energy in maintaining this extreme temperature.

LED benefits

LED lighting boasts numerous benefits over rival technologies:

  • Energy-efficiency: LED lighting offers energy savings of 80-90% over incandescent or halogen technologies and up to 50% over fluorescent lamps.
  • Longer life: with typical lifespans of up to 50,000 hours, LED lasts 2 or 3 times longer than fluorescent lighting, and up to 50 times longer than incandescent. Maintenance costs are vastly reduced as a result.
  • Instant light: unlike many fluorescent lights, LEDs require no warm-up time to reach full brightness.
  • Eco-friendly: LED lighting has potential to drastically reduce carbon emissions. Around 20% of the world’s electricity is used on lighting. Unlike fluorescent lamps, LEDs contain no mercury, making disposal easier and cleaner. Longer lifespan relieves pressure on landfill sites.
  • Reduced heat output: LED lighting has significant heat dissipation needs. However, unlike filament bulbs, an LED lamp does not project infrared heat in its beam. This increases suitability for lighting heat-sensitive items like artworks or food.
  • Added durability: LEDs are a solid state form of lighting, resistant to vibration and shock. They are less delicate than incandescent or fluorescent lamps, and outperform competing technologies in cold temperatures.

Retrofit LED bulbs such as this 5W GLS look almost identical to traditional bulbs

Can I replace existing lights with LEDs?

Retrofit LED bulbs (ones that fit into existing bulb holders) are suitable in most situations. Close attention should be paid to heat dissipation needs, especially when replacing halogen reflectors in enclosed light fittings (e.g. recessed ceiling light). Advanced heat sink design in modern LED lamps overcomes the reliability problems seen in early models. Manufacturer’s guarantees are often supplied to back this.

A few words about dimming

Take a look at our useful LED v Incandescent infographicLED lighting is excellent for dimming, maintaining energy efficiency at all light levels. However, not all LED lamps or fittings are dimmable. Dimmability is a property of the LED driver, so you need to shop specifically for it. Shop for dimmable LED bulbs

Many modern LED lamps are compatible with old dimmer switches, but the minimum load of a switch (often 60W) is a potential problem if you only want to dim a few lights. It is sometimes easier to install a new dimmer switch, with modern ‘trailing-edge’ dimmers being suitable for LED loads.

Dedicated LED fittings

LED light fittings are increasingly designed with non-replaceable LEDs, mainly due to their long LED lifespan. In this instance, the whole luminaire is replaced at the end of its useful life. One of the advantages is that designers can build light fittings that are fine-tuned for efficiency, with very little light being wasted.

Does the light from an LED reduce over time?

Yes, it’s a process called lumen depreciation, which affects LED and fluorescent lighting. Incandescent bulbs produce the same amount of light throughout their lifespan.

LED lifespan is usually measured to a point where it has lost 30% of original lumen output (known as 70% lumen maintenance, or L70). Lumens are used to measure the total amount of light produced, regardless of direction or beam angle.

Reducing carbon emissions

It is argued by scientists worldwide that we are heading towards potentially disastrous climate change due to excessive carbon emissions. The way we create and use our energy is all part of this equation and regardless of your stance, reducing your carbon footprint is definitely a positive way of doing your bit for the environment. You’ll be saving money at the same time!

A switch to LED – savings in a UK household

The average UK household effectively creates 10 tonnes (10,000 kg) of carbon dioxide per year. Electricity usage accounts for roughly a third of it.

If a household burns 6 x 60W filament bulbs for 4 hours a day, that amounts to 319 kg of carbon emissions a year. The annual energy cost will be around £70.

By comparison, 6 x 10W LED retrofits produce 54 kg of carbon dioxide per year and cost £11.50 in electricity. In one year, you’ve recovered most of the bulb costs and still have years of light ahead.

Since lighting accounts for 15% of the average home’s electricity bill, an LED conversion significantly reduces your carbon footprint.

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LED in summary

LED lighting is energy efficient, long-lived, eco-friendly, robust, and all-round cool (except around its heat sink). In addition, it produces little or no UV, is unaffected by frequent switching, is naturally directional for precise control, and it’s compact. LED is the future of lighting.

Why not start saving money (and the planet) today and take a look at our full range of LED lighting.

For more helpful guidance, inspiration and advice, take a look at our Lighting Advice section.

Shower lights – clear ideas

Many people have a distinct preference for taking either a bath or shower. It’s the rushed lack of luxury that spoils the showering experience for some, but a shrewd choice of shower lights can improve that perception. With the right lighting, a shower needn’t be claustrophobic or uninviting.

Below we look at some of the best ways to use shower lighting, the types of products that are available and offer guidance in terms of any applicable regulations.

Shower lighting ideas

A classic technique used in shower lighting is to position fittings over a rear wall. This provides a greater feeling of space, rather than creating a boxed-in effect with centrally positioned lights. Any light that reflects from a surface is naturally diffused, which has a flattering and restful effect.

Fireguard LED7 dimmable spotlight in whiteFor their remarkable energy efficiency and lifespan, LED fittings such as the Integral 6W LED Downlight offer excellent value for money. Highlighting features of this downlight includes an astonishing 35,000 hour lifespan and 3-year guarantee.

If recessed ceiling lights are not possible, consider wall-mounted outdoor downlights with high IP ratings. Remember that LED lighting is 80-90% more energy efficient than halogen lighting and needs far less maintenance. Halogen lighting has its own merits, including modest initial outlay and superb colour rendering.

Building regulations

In the home

Installation of shower lighting in the home is subject to Part P Building Regulations. An NICEIC ‘Part P factsheet’ is available in PDF form here.

Workplaces

HSE Electricity at Work Regulations apply to workplaces such as hotels or university campuses.

In all instances reference to IEE Wiring Regulations (17th Edition) is required (see below). Note that ‘IET Wiring Regulations’ are the same (the IEE now forms part of the IET).

Bathroom Zones and IP Ratings

Latest IEE Wiring Regulations (17th Edition) divide a bathroom into Zones 0, 1 and 2. Perceived risk of electric shock defines each zone. Areas falling beyond these zones are ‘outside zones’ (the previous Zone 3 no longer exists).

Please see our articles on bathroom zones and IP ratings for precise details.

Shower power

In some countries, the idea of bathing in a pool of stagnating water is odd. A shower is more hygienic, uses less water, takes less time, and often uses less space. A little care taken over warmth and light makes it enjoyable, even, to the extent that some people burst into song!

Why not browse our range of shower lights? Alternatively if you’re looking for more inspiration, advice and ideas, take a look at our Lighting Advice section.

The Arc floor lamp – overhang gets a new name!

The Arc floor lamp isn’t part of a new range of floor lamps from one of the best known lighting manufacturers on the market. It is in fact what we until recently called an overhang floor lamp – those floor lamps that go up and then lean out, allowing you to specifically place your light where you want it.

What’s in a name

For some reason the popularity of the term ‘overhang’ has diminished and for no more than purely aesthetic reasons people have been drawn to a name which to be honest does sound a little less clumsy. So in all but name nothing has really changed! The same great range of overhanging floor lamps is available, but under a new, arguably improved banner.

The Arc Range

Lyco’s range of Arc Floor Lamps – our top picks
Joel Arc Floor Lamp

 

The Hudosn Floor Lamp is a simple and contemporary design, and a light head that can be precisely angled according to your needs.

Osaka Floor Lamp

 

The Linear Floor Lamp allows for plenty of adjustability and also features a USB port and shelf for a useful charging station.

Arvin Arc Lamp

 

The Watsie Floor Lamp  borrows from the vintage balanced-arm design of a traditional desk lamp, and looks like an oversized version. Made of metal it is a great quality lamp.

 

Dynamo Arc Floor Lamp - Antique Chrome

The Lucide Lorin Floor Lamp has an on trend design, the industrial style, exposed bulb allows you to choose an attractive decorative filament bulb, these come in all shapes, sizes and colours – so you can really create your own unique look.

Reaching out

Just as the collective name has been ‘improved’, it goes without saying that our range of Arc lamps will continue to grow, offering even more options.

For more news, advice and inspiration take a look at our Lighting Advice section.

Simple guide to converting your lighting to LED

There’s never been a better time to convert your lighting to the very latest LED technology. The great news is that the price of LED bulbs has fallen drastically whilst the quality has got better and better.  Also LED bulbs use up to 90% less energy than regular bulbs and last up to 50 times longer.  It’s a real win, win!

After almost 20 years in lighting we like to think of ourselves as your Lighting Experts. We understand all lighting including LED. We have already helped 1000s of customers convert to LED with little or no inconvenience along the way so why not let us help you?

Here is our step-by-step guide to saving ££££s on your ever increasing energy bills:

Step 1 – Survey

Call us and we can help you undertake a simple survey of your premises. This can probably be carried out over the phone but otherwise we might need to visit your premises and carry out an on-site survey. From this we can produce a quick report and show you the savings that can be made by switching to LED.

Step 2 – Product Selection

We will make suggestions as to the best products that will meet your needs. We will take into consideration such things as light level requirements, dimming and use in order to recommend the optimum products. We offer LED from the major manufacturers and will always offer you the best option, not the most expensive!

Step 3 – The Plan

Depending on the size of your premises we will help you devise a plan to convert your lighting. We will help you look for the ‘quick wins’ and assist with testing and installing. We will make sure all the items you require are delivered before you are ready to start the installation.

Step 4 – Installation

We can offer a full installation service or we can guide you or your maintenance team through the installation process. Whether you are using us to install your lighting or not, we will always be there to ‘hold your hand’ through the entire process.

Step 5 – Start Saving

As soon as you have switched to LED you will start saving money.  Depending on the size of your building you could see a return on your original cost in as little as 6 months.

Start the switch today!

We make it sound simple because with the right help switching to LED lighting is! If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to drop us a line or give us a call. We’ll be more than happy to offer some sound advice and start you on the path to improving your lighting efficiency, whilst saving you money at the same time.

If you would like to find out what sort of savings you can make by converting to LED take a look at our ‘How much will I save’ article.

Here are two examples of satisfied customers who Lyco have helped convert over to LED:

For more advice, inspiration and news take a look at our Lighting Advice section.