We often are asked the following question by people who want replace old, energy-hogging incandescent bulbs energy-efficient LED bulbs:
Is it possible to LED bulbs with higher wattage equivalents than what my fixtures allow?
In short, the answer is yes, you can, provided the LEDs use lower wattage than your fixtures.
Here’s the thing. When the label reads “100 watt LED equivalent,” that by no means imply that the LED bulb in question actually consumes 100 watts. All it actually means that this LED bulb emits an amount of light that’s same or similar to what a 100-watt incandescent bulb does.
In case the socket states that you shouldn’t go over 60 watts, it is actually pointing to the dangers of high amount of heat produced by incandescent bulbs. But the truth of the matter is LEDs are designed in such a way that they don’t produce high heat levels. Therefore, if the fixture states “don’t go over 60 watts” and you would like to install an LED bulbs that’s
If your socket says not to exceed 60-Watts, it is referring the dangers of high heat output associated with incandescent bulbs. However, LED’s do not emit dangerous levels of heat. Thus, if your fixture says “not to exceed 60-Watts” but you want to use an LED bulb equivalent to 100 watt, you can go ahead with it. As said before, since LEDs don’t emit a lot of heat, you’ll not encounter any issue if you install a 100-watt equivalent LED in a socket with a 60-watt limit. (This limit applies to incandescent bulbs which can produce dangerous levels of heat, than to LEDs.)
That said, why are the LED bulbs many times more efficient than incandescent and other bulbs? They are the way they are because, unlike incandescent bulbs, they don’t produce light by using heat.
The problem with incandescent bulbs is that they emit a wider spectrum of radiation because they heat metal to produce illumination. Although they emit visible light, incandescent bulbs also emit UV light, infrared light, and other non-visible radiation. As a result, they eat up a lot more energy. By contrast, LED bulbs produce a much smaller spectrum. They only emit radiation that’s visible, which in turn boosts their energy efficiency manifold.
There is one more question we get asked frequently: “How can I be sure that the LED bulb I have picked is bright enough?”
Here’s a tip that will come in handy. Use lumens — not watts — to get an idea about how bright an LED bulb will be. Generally speaking, you will get the same amount of light as produced by a 60-watt incandescent bulb from an 800 Lumen LED bulb.
But what if you want to use something brighter?
Well, that’s not a problem at all. You can safely use a 100 watt, 125 watt or, 150 watt equivalent with a 60 watt fixture. That’s because all of them use under 60W! For instance, an LED bulb that’s 150 watt equivalent emits roughly 2,600 lumens but consumes less than 30 watts.
Simply put, you can use a 150 watt LED equivalent with a 60 watt socket and in turn enjoy over 3 times the brightness produced by the old 60W incandescent bulb!
Whether you use a 100 watt or 150 watt LED equivalent, there’s one thing you must keep in mind. Use only high-quality LED bulbs, that is, those with a CRI rating of 90+. Only these bulbs emit the most balanced light. At LiquidLEDs, you’ll only find CRI90+ LED bulbs, because we don’t ever compromise on quality.