Are LED lights worth the cost

One way or another, the old is always being replaced by the new, and light bulbs are no exception. Most people are accustomed to the traditional bulb, called an incandescent, and know its pros and cons: it provides a nice and warm light on top of being cheap, but doesn’t last very long and also gets steaming hot.

LED lights are the new kid on the block, and they’re quickly looking to make incandescent light bulbs into antiques despite the latter being used predominantly just a couple of years back. There are also CFLs and halogen bulbs, but neither has the same amount of utility and longevity that a LED bulb has. Should you make the switch to LED lights, and are they worth the cost? Here’s an LED light cost calculator.

The affordability of LED lights

Thanks to ever-evolving industrialization, LED lights are getting more affordable by the minute. They ought to, if they’re gunning for the dirt-cheap incandescent’s spot as the light bulb of choice. Whereas before, LEDs were used more for novelty lighting or by those with more pennies in their pockets, they’re now available to pretty much everyone. Here’s the bottom line: there’s no real argument for LED lights not being worth the cost. Yes, their initial price is a bit higher, but many have now been brought low enough that their cost rivals that of some incandescents ($5-$10). When you consider their benefits over standard light bulbs, the choice becomes clear.

For one (and it’s perhaps the trait they’re best known for), LED lights don’t die out nearly as quickly as incandescents do. Many LED lights have an expected lifespan of two decades or more, with certain manufacturers promising that their bulbs will last a lifetime. If you take into account the amount of incandescent light bulbs you might buy during the course of your life, it’s easy to see why LEDs are a great investment.

But it’s more than that – who hasn’t had an incandescent bulb die on them in the worst of times? With LEDs, you probably won’t have to worry about this anymore. No longer will you have to keep a stack of incandescent light bulbs ready as replacements – if your LED light dies before its time and you’ve kept it in good condition, you’ll have to concede to having some bad luck.

Aside from lasting longer, the way LED lights work also makes them spend less energy without any sacrifices in illumination. That’s right, you won’t just cut down on replacement expenses – you’ll also reduce your energy bill, however small the amount might be. Yet another plus is that active LED lights won’t burn you to the touch – light bulb burns are rare, but sting when they happen.

Finally, there’s something to be said about the various types of illumination that LED lights provide. By choosing the right bulbs, you might save a few bucks on interior decoration you would have used to adjusted the incandescent’s shine. With all the above in mind, there’s no real reason not to invest in LED bulbs to replace your incandescent ones. The only situation where this might not be advised is with bulbs in very tight spaces, as the lack of airflow can kill a LED bulb.

How to hang and light an oriental rug

If you got your hands on an Oriental rug, you might be looking to put it at the front and center of your home. That’s reasonable, considering you probably paid big bucks for it. Oriental rugs feature some of the best textile craftsmanship out there, and they can also be quite old to boot.

The preferred method of displaying Oriental rugs is hanging them instead of having them lay on the ground. This lets everyone focus on the intricacies of the rug instead of merely seeing it as a whole.

While hanging it is a great start, there are things to keep in mind if you’d like to get the most out of your expensive Oriental rug.

How to make your Oriental rug shine

Hanging your Oriental rug properly takes a lot more knowledge than you’d expect. Due to the materials used and oftentimes because of their age, Oriental rugs show vulnerability to several common materials as well as conditions.

If you’re looking to hang your Oriental rug, you’ll have to think hard to find the right spot for it. Alterations to your home might also be necessary to make room for the rug.

For starters, the UV rays from sunlight can diminish your rug’s dyes significantly. If you’re hanging your Oriental rug next to the window so that all your neighbors can admire it, be prepare to either move it when the sun starts shining through the windows or to install UV filters on them. One option costs time while the other costs money, and both cost effort, but these are the sacrifices you’ll need to make to have your Oriental rug hanging in that one perfect spot.

There are also quite a few materials to look out for – any of them coming in contact with your Oriental rug could cause some serious damage, even on smaller surfaces. As you might expect, metal will lead to corrosion due to the moisture in the air. Again, even small metal objects can corrode the fabrics of your rug, so be extra careful when examining a desired area. Wood is another dangerous object to have around your Oriental rug, as its acidity can cause a different type of corrosion (although one that is equally damaging).

Another thing to keep in mind is how you’ll do the actual hanging. Forget about nails, clippers and especially adhesives – all of these can harm the rug. Instead, choose between Velcro or frame mounting – the former gives better display options while the latter protects the rug and is best used with more vulnerable fabrics.

Finally, there’s lighting to consider. For your Oriental rug, you’ll want to find the accent bulb that best pronounces its intricate details, including the weaving and knotting patterns, the colors, the overall picture and so on. Since LED bulbs come in various colors and shades of intensity, they’re probably your best bet, although you might have to experiment a bit before you can find the perfect fit. In terms of lamps, the method of lighting the rug should be non-invasive or even concealed when possible, placing the rug at the center of the stage.

3 great lighting options to light your back patio

Most people with a patio and deck find them most enjoyable after the sun sets. It’s more than just coming home from work and sitting back in a relaxing environment – a well-lit deck will give off a special feel that can’t be replicated with any amount of daylight.

You might have constructed the perfect patio and deck but now find yourself scratching your head when it comes to lighting the place up. You’ll also want to evaluate what cleaning options are available for the lighting. Here are 3 great options you can count on for your patio and deck lighting needs.

Pathway and floor lighting options

Floor lighting will create an amazing atmosphere around your patio and deck, provided you have a small understanding of what you’re doing. The margin of error is quite wide here – most forms of floor lighting will generally be a good choice.

That being said, there’s lots of patterns and lamps to choose from. For example, you could go for pathway lighting that ends up circling around the patio, making the whole area similar to a landing strip. You could also opt for ‘randomly’ placed lighting throughout the yard.

There are a few things to watch out for with floor lighting, though. You’ll want to position the lamps – or rather, the bulbs – so that they don’t shine directly in anyone’s eyes. Since floor lighting generally needs to be powerful, this becomes all the more important. Another thing to keep in mind is that floor lighting tends to be static and usually requires installation of both lamps and electrical wiring. You might not be able to do this yourself, and hiring an electrician will act as an additional expense.

Motion-activated lighting

This type of lighting helps give patios and decks that magical nighttime feel they’re so often geared towards. With motion lighting, you’ll save time and effort as you won’t need to worry about constantly turning certain bulbs on or off. Furthermore, motion-activated lights actually provide better overall illumination, as you can install additional lamps in less-utilized areas of your yard and forget about them until they’re needed.

For all their style, motion-activated lights can sometimes prove bothersome to people. You might find yourself wanting to illuminate a part of your yard where nobody is present – for these cases, make sure to install motion lighting that comes with a standard ‘On’ switch as well. It’s also worth mentioning that motion-activated lighting options tend to be pricier than their regular counterparts, both to purchase and install.

Lighting as part of a fan

If your area experiences hot summers, there are few better ways of lighting your patio and deck than with fan lights. These are a great way to make lighting as inconspicuous as possible while still being powerful enough. Most home owners opt for a large overhead fan with a single ambient light, although smaller fans are also an option.

While fan lighting is generally placed at the fan’s center, you can also opt to place the bulbs behind the blades. This will create a unique light show for you and your visitors whenever the fan is running, but be warned – not everyone will find this option pleasant.

What spectrum of lighting is best for your home

There was a time when people might have resorted to painting light bulbs in a certain color to change their spectrum of lighting. These days, though? All you need to do is pick the right LED bulb and you’ll have exactly the type of lighting you want.

Still, knowing which light bulb goes in what room can be a bit tricky. LED lighting comes not only in various colors, but also in several different types of illumination, each best-suited for a certain environment.

Lighting up the rooms based on their use.

Let’s start by examining two basic forms of lighting found in every home:

  • Task lighting: Its purpose is, as you might imagine, providing illumination as you perform any type of work, be it cooking, cleaning, repairs and so on. Task lighting is best used in an on/off capacity, although this can be tricky with insufficient funds or space.
  • Ambient and accent lighting: This type of lighting is much dimmer and serves to illuminate the home in a milder, more pleasant way. The purpose of this lighting is to somewhat mimic the effects of indirect sunlight – well-lit rooms and homes will often come off as even more pleasant during the night than during the day. Ambient lighting creates a general ‘feel’ of illumination and should be inconspicuous, while accent lighting is meant to help display a certain object of value or note in your home(paintings, carpets, statues).

Combining these forms of lighting takes some work. You’ll want to focus on ambient lighting by thinking of it as static, and try and include task lighting in a way that lets you easily remove it(table lamps are one example). There are obvious exceptions where you might want permanent task lighting installed, like your garage, porch or bathroom. Make sure not to overdo it, as this lighting can easily overtake your home and make your ambient light scheme less pronounced.

Each spectrum of lighting examined

The main reason many people still opt for outdated incadescent light bulbs is that they all provide the same type of reliable glow. With LEDs and CFLs, you’ll need to know what each spectrum of lighting does before making a purchase.

The first is soft white or warm white, which emulates traditional incadescent bulbs. It has the least Kelvins(the unit that measures the intensity of the light). You’ll want to use soft white lights in living rooms, bedrooms and similar areas where lighting is meant to take a back seat.

Bright white or cool white bulbs have almost twice the Kelvins, thereby giving off a much stronger glow. They’re commonly found in kitchens, garages and similar rooms where you need strong illumination to help you with your work.

The so-called daylight bulbs are the strongest of all and can have up to 6,000 Kelvins. They’re meant for use in rooms where you’ll need to pay close attention to detail, like when reading or working with miniature objects. Because of their immense brightness, daylight bulbs are best used in an auxiliary capacity rather than being a room’s main source of lighting.