Halogen Vs LED Bulbs

Halogen Vs LED Bulbs

Halogen Vs LED Bulbs

In 2018, the European Union began to phase out halogen bulbs. Why? Because inefficient halogen technology presents consumers with a false economy (cheaper to buy, more expensive to run). Businesses and households are switching to energy-efficient LED bulbs, which use five times less energy in comparison. This article will discuss halogen vs LED bulbs. 

Halogen & LED - Energy Consumption

Older incandescent bulbs were known to provide a 9-to-1 ratio of energy consumed to light output. This ratio meant that incandescent bulbs wasted up to 90% of the energy consumed (mostly given off as heat). But how do halogen bulbs and LED bulbs compare in terms of energy efficiency? Let’s see.

  • Halogen Bulbs 

Halogen bulbs offer an 8-to-2 ratio of energy consumed to light output. Therefore, halogen technology wastes up to 80% of the energy needed to power the bulb. 

For example, a standard 70 Watt halogen bulb only converts around 14 Watts into visible light. 

  • LED Bulbs

Conservative estimates suggest that LED bulbs offer a 2-to-8 ratio of energy consumed to light output. This ratio means that LED technology converts more than 80% of the power it consumes to light. 

For example, a 10 Watt LED bulb will convert above 8 Watts of the energy consumed into useable light energy.

The comparative difference in energy efficiency between halogen and LED bulbs is significant. Halogen bulbs also contribute a larger carbon footprint in comparison to LED. 

If all British homes switched to LED technology, the energy savings would amount to around 1.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide per year (this translates to a total CO2 saving of 5KG per bulb per year or a 63KG annual saving per household).

Is Halogen or LED More Cost-effective?

Switching to LED throughout the home would cost the average UK household around £100. However, the annual average energy savings would amount to roughly £40. How does this saving play out over the lifetime of the bulb? Let’s look at an example.

A 50 Watt halogen bulb is equivalent in brightness to a 6 Watt LED bulb. By switching from 50 W halogens to 6 W LEDs, consumers can expect savings of around £75 per bulb lifespan.

The Lifespan of Halogen Bulbs vs LED Bulbs

Businesses and households looking to make the switch from halogen to LED bulbs will be encouraged to learn that the comparative lifespan of LED bulbs is far greater than halogen bulbs. 

For example, halogen bulbs will perform for approximately 2,000 hours or two years of average use. However, LED bulbs last for 25,000 hours or 20-25 years.


In comparison to halogen technology, LED bulbs save money and energy across domestic and corporate applications. 

Bayonet and Edison screw LED bulb caps are available for use in standard light fittings, but fittings designed for bulbs such as MR16s, MR11s, and G4s will require a driver to convert mains AC to DC before retrofitting the fixture with LED bulbs. 

Consumers may also wish to note that dimmable LED bulbs work best when paired with LED dimmer switches (standard dimmer switches cannot accurately control the low wattage levels of LED bulbs).