Home>Discussions>ELECTRICAL & LIGHTING>Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
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dj1
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
dj1

Copy: " LED's are bound to come down in price. "

Judging by past tech changes, if LED prices dive, it will most likely be due to a brand new "better" technology.

However, I like LED lights. And if you purchase LED now, you are helping manufacturers offset their costs.

Fencepost
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
Fencepost
dj1 wrote:

Copy: " LED's are bound to come down in price. "

Judging by past tech changes, if LED prices dive, it will most likely be due to a brand new "better" technology.

However, I like LED lights. And if you purchase LED now, you are helping manufacturers offset their costs.

I suspect that LEDs will see a continued drop in prices for a while, as technology reduces the cost of manufacturing and increasing demand allows manufacturers to amortize the cost of tooling over a greater number of units (economy of scale).

However, once everyone has switched to LEDs, if the predicted average life of 22.5 years really plays out, will there be a period of time where LED sales drop precipitously due to the fact that so few are failing while production only serves new construction and not the replacement market? As a result of the significant drop sales, fixed production costs must be amortized over fewer units; will that cause a rise in price that exceeds inflation?

Mastercarpentry
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
Mastercarpentry

Fencepost, I doubt that we will see this. At this time there is nothing in the way of new ideas for better or more efficient lighting than LED's, save perhaps for very specialized uses not seen in homes. It's also important to know a bit about these for my statement to be understood. The LED is only the tiny part which makes light. Wherever LED's are used this is essentially the same and can be used for room lights, car taillights, flashlights etc. The LED is versatile so if one market segment tanks there will be plenty other places to sell LED's. Second part is the driver, and while not as universal they are similar enough to make small production changes to fit any application for a given LED cheap and easy. This part usually also encompasses power control circuitry but with house voltages that could also be separate. Not so versatile or universal but relatively cheap, and the same part could be used in a number of non-LED applications. The fixture body itself is where the market may slow, but with the constant style changes it too will not really 'go dead'.

We haven't reached the apex of LED technology yet but it is nearing. Production technique is in a similar spot. More factories than ever are making these which keeps competition and prices keen and that will continue until market saturation causes the lesser factories to seek something more profitable to make, leaving only the best ones active. These will never reach the pricing low of the far simpler Incandescent lights, but it's going to get a lot closer than most think.

My personal belief (which could be very wrong) is that there's another ~50% of current prices to be reduced before we see this stabilize at the most for the least money and I think that will occur between 2-5 years from right now. LED lighting is advance greater than even PEX and PVC over Galvanized and cast iron in plumbing, or heat pump technology over old furnaces. The day will come when the old jokes about how many people it takes to change a light bulb will be met with a question of why it needed changing in the first place.

Phil

DariusMDeV
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
DariusMDeV

It surprises me that there aren't direct replacement fixtures that update the look and allow for the replacement of T8 fixtures with LED.

The house we're moving into has a lot of both recessed and non-recessed T8 fixtures, it would be nice to take them down and replace with something more attractive, but there doesn't seem to be fixtures for that purpose.

ed21
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
ed21

I've seen LED tubes, but don't know if an old fixture can be modified to accept them. I'm guessing not without internal rewiring. Then the fixture wouldn't be UL rated. A direct replacement tube might be handy for some, but it seems unlikely to happen.

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