Guide on how to buy LED Spotlights for your Home
Fitting LED spotlights into any ceiling or recessed area in your home can provide you with a tailored lighting effect which will be unique to your taste. LED spotlights provide a discreet, good and even light across any room and give a feeling of space and depth.
Finding the right LED spotlight isn’t always an easy task. This guide will help you make your buying decision easier.
There are two main LED spotlight fitting types. These are MR16 and GU10’s. Below is an illustration of these:
GU10’s run at 220 volts (which is the same power supply provided in our homes) and MR16’s run on 12 volts. This means that MR16 LED spotlights need an external transformer to convert the mains power supply to 12 volts. You don’t need to do this with GU10’s. You can simply plug them in and they will be ready to use.
Our recommendation would be to use GU10’s (to avoid using an external transformer) if you are fitting LED spotlights from new into your home. If you are retro-fitting LED spotlights from old halogen spotlights you will have to determine which fitting (see diagram above) you’re currently using.
You may wish to also consider using LED down lights instead of LED spotlights.
Now you need to think about lumens. The more lumens, the brighter the light.
With spotlights you can go with fewer lumens than if you were buying an LED bulb. LED spotlights have a better quality of light and appear brighter than halogens.
Now you need to decide how warm or cool you want your LED spotlight colour temperature to be. The ‘degrees Kelvin’ is often used to illustrate the differences between a very warm light (low Kelvin number) to very cool light (high Kelvin number).
The diagram below shows the Kelvin light temperature scale, what type of LED spotlight can be used for this Kelvin reading and also the effect this light colour will have:
Most people use warmer light for living rooms and bedrooms but a cooler light for kitchens and bathrooms.
The narrower the beam angle (e.g. 300) the more concentrated the beam angle. You may want this to highlight a particular item in your room for example. If you are looking for wider coverage from your LED spotlight you should look towards using a beam angle more in the region of 600. You should also consider the height of the position of your LED spotlight to the area you are lighting. The further away the light source is to the ground or object the wider the coverage will be.
See the chart below:
There are several types of LED spotlights. Below are the main options and a brief explanation of each of them:
Standard LED spotlights: These are made up with a number of 1watt LED’s for example 3 x 1watt or 4 x 1 watt LED’s
COB (Chip On Board) LED spotlights: Multi LED chips are manufactured together to make one lighting LED which looks like an even spread lighting panel when light.
SMD (Surface Mount Device) LED spotlights: This LED spotlight is mounted onto a circuit board and is quite small as it has no leads or housing unlike the standard LED spotlights. The light omitted from an SMD LED spotlight has a wider spread than other spotlights.
Please check the depth of you current GU10 gimbal surround. If it is fixed and not flexible in depth you may require new gimbals.
Lastly, you will need to check the length of you LED spotlight to ensure it will not protrude out from you’re your static or directional gimbal once fitted into your ceiling or recess.
If you have any questions regarding what LED spotlights you should buy then please just get in touch and our LED lighting specialists will be more than happy to help you.