It’s a curious thing that LED technology has been part of our lives for so long, yet many of us still scratch our heads in collective wonderment at the concept of LED lighting
. What’s the big mystery, and why don’t we know about it?LED stands for “light-emitting diode,” but of course that’s not telling you too much. An LED is a semiconductor light source that generates what’s called electroluminescence
, which differs from the luminescence created by halogen, incandescent and fluorescent lighting. To illustrate the difference, consider:
- Incandescent lights create light by heating a wire filament that then starts to glow.
- Fluorescent bulbs shine by using electricity to charge mercury vapor.
- Halogen lights are a loose combination of the above in that they use a filament and a halogen (like bromine or iodine) to make light.
An LED light uses none of these admittedly fancy tricks, although it has some pretty sweet moves of its own. An individual LED is a sliver of semiconducting material (such as silicon) that transforms electrical current into photons. Once upon a time the light wavelengths of these photons only came in red, but modern-day wizards are now able to make LEDs that glow in any color.This feature makes them especially nice to have during the holidays. In addition to producing brilliant color, they also store very well thanks to their durability. So, when it’s time to take the lights down it doesn’t have to turn into a game of Operation as you put them back in the box.Uniqueness is yet another perk, especially if you’re trying to bring something new to your friendly neighborhood holiday lighting competition. LED Christmas lights
come in many varieties that definitely stand out among the larger crowd of incandescent lights.Energy savings vary, but LED holiday lights use up to 98% less
power than equivalent holiday incandescent bulbs
, all while remaining cool to the touch and less of a safety hazard. Plus, all that goodness means the majority of brands get an eco-friendly ENERGY STAR rating.Now, that's not to say there's no longer any room for incandescent bulbs during the holidays. The times may be changing, but not so much that we have to give up on the tried and true standards of holiday lighting. Besides, many incandescent holiday bulbs deliver a certain level of nostalgia that may still elude these fancy new lights.Even so, ATGStores.com
always carries a wide selection of indoor and outdoor LED holiday lights just in case you want to start a new lighting tradition this year, or replace that big green knot that’s waiting for you in the back of the storage closet.