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Visit Scotland | Alba

Lighting can account for a quarter of your energy bills. Switching to low-energy light bulbs can save you a lot of energy and money and reduce your carbon emissions.

1. What are the benefits of LED lighting?

LEDs are one of the most efficient low energy lighting options available. Switching to LED lighting can significantly cut costs. Its technology is changing rapidly, meaning light of a fantastic quality that you can dim if needed.

  • Which LEDs are there?

    The easiest and most cost-effective lights to change to LEDs are halogen bulbs with a GU10 fitting. But you can also find LEDs as:

    • candle bulbs
    • clear filament bulbs
    • small G9 fittings
    • picture lights
    • large external lights
  • What are the savings by switching to LEDs?

    The savings for an LED are similar to using (compact) fluorescent lights. The advantages of LED are that:

    • light comes on instantly rather than gradually
    • they're designed to be switched on and off several times a day and have an even longer life
    • they're using up to 80% less energy
    • they're lasting 50 times longer than incandescent lightbulbs
    • they're being attractive with good light output
    • they come in a range of shapes, sizes and fittings
  • Did you know?

    Using LED lighting is a great way to reduce the amount of time you spend changing light bulbs! LEDs last about 10 times as long as halogen and incandescent bulbs. They also heat up less, limiting fire hazards and reducing possible need for cooling the space.

2. How do I select the right LED lights for my business?

For years, people have chosen light bulbs by their wattage, which only tells you how much energy a bulb uses — not how bright it is. Lumens is a more reliable way to tell a light bulb’s brightness.

A standard 60-watt incandescent bulb, for example, produces about 800 lumens of light. By comparison, an LED bulb producing 800 lumens only uses around 13 watts.

Our table shows the relationship between lumen and watt for different light bulbs types. But remember that bulb technology is improving all the time.







Standard incandescent





New halogen incandescent (save up to 30%)





Compact fluorescent lights (save up to 75%)





LEDs (save up to 80%)





3. Further advice

  • Beam angle

    Choosing the correct beam angle is important, especially for spotlights.

    If you want to light specific features or create a certain mood, choose lights that concentrate output with a narrow beam angle of around 45° to 60°.

    Where you need a wider spread of light, use a light with a beam angle of 120°. The lower the degree of the beam angle, the narrower the beam of light will be.

  • Light colour

    The colour of light gets measured in Kelvins [K].

    • 2700K gives a reddish light like the standard incandescent bulb
    • 5600K to 8000K mimics a blueish daylight

    For restaurants and bedrooms 2700K is most appropriate. Leisure centres, offices and conference facilities are better lit at 4000K or even real daylight.

  • Bulb dimensions

    It’s worth checking the dimensions of the LED bulb to make sure it will fit inside the original bulb housing / light fitting / ceiling void.

    While the diameter of the bulb face is generally 50mm for LED spots (GU10 and MR16), the length and width of the body can vary.

    You can find a lot of this information on the packaging of the light bulb or from your supplier.

  • Top tips

    Try a few bulbs from different suppliers and see which ones you like best before replacing them all.

    Make a whole area feel bright by lighting ceiling and walls, and having light coloured and reflective surfaces. For mood lighting, spotlights are more effective.

    The light fitting that holds the bulb has different efficiencies too. You can increase the amount of light by:

    • light coloured or see-through lamp shades
    • aluminium reflective surfaces inside a recessed lamp
    • usage of light holders designed for LEDs

Further lighting advice

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