Outdoor Post Light Fixtures
Outdoor post light fixtures provide many benefits, come in many designs, and are available in four different types of bulbs. The benefits provided by outdoor lighting include ambiance, security, safety, and enhanced focal points and may be of further benefit according to the type of bulb chosen. The styles of outdoor post light fixtures include rustic, traditional, cottage, coastal, modern, mission, contemporary, and industrial. The choice of bulb type is the feature that may require a bit more research, and information about bulb types for outdoor post light fixtures follows. The bulb types are Incandescent, fluorescent, LED, and CFL.
Incandescent Lights. Incandescent lights were around before Thomas Edison came along, but he significantly improved the technology. Edison lengthened the life span of incandescent bulbs to exceed 600 hours, and his basic technique was to create a vacuum in the bulb and to use bamboo filaments. Other technologies have since surpassed incandescent lights, but the bulbs are still useful for outdoor post light fixtures and other commercial purposes.
More about incandescent bulbs follows:
- Inexpensive to produce and therefore cost-efficient for buyers.
- Ideal for lighting small spaces but not a good choice for large spaces.
- Safe to handle and dispose of because there are no toxic substances, such as mercury.
- Not very energy efficient, since only about 10% of the energy used actually creates light.
- The part of the bulb that doesn’t produce light produces heat.
- Other types of bulbs for outdoor post light fixtures have a better lifespan.
Fluorescent Bulbs. Outdoor post light fixtures are sometimes made for use with fluorescent light bulbs. Benefits of fluorescent bulbs are found in comparison with incandescent lights because they last up to ten times longer and use about one-fourth less energy. Fluorescent bulbs are more expensive up front, but then they last up to a full year, depending on the specific type of bulb. The environmental consideration, as far as outdoor post light fixtures which utilize fluorescent bulbs, is that they do use trace amounts of mercury and must be recycled.
LED’s. Light-Emitting Diodes or LED’s are considered by many to be the best choice for outdoor post light fixtures, though they are not without their down sides. The following are a few of the good and bad attributes of LED’s:
- LED’s are the longest lasting bulbs available, at 50,000 hours.
- There are no toxic materials or any other kinds of hazardous materials in LED s.
- Cooling costs can be lowered with the use of LED’s because the bulbs create less heat than other bulbs.
- It is estimated that one LED light for outdoor post light fixtures prevents about a half ton of harmful greenhouse gas emissions from entering the atmosphere.
- LED’s cost more than other bulbs, averaging between $10 and $30.
Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs). Over the lifetime of a CFL, it is estimated that about $40 in electricity costs can be saved. CFLs are less expensive than other energy efficient bulbs and are readily available. CFLs last about ten times longer than incandescent bulbs. On the down side, CFLs contain mercury, which is a harmful toxin. There is also evidence that the bulbs dim in a relatively short amount of time.
Whichever type of bulb you choose for your outdoor post light fixtures, you can’t go wrong if you choose the design that suits your needs and your taste.