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Are Your LEDs Too Hot to Handle?

Whether you're handling an incandescent, a CFL, or a LED light bulb, no one wants to burn their fingers when they go to unscrew a bulb. All light bulbs give off a certain amount of the energy used to generate light as heat, but just how hot do these bulbs get when you leave them running for a few hours?

Well, the average incandescent bulb converts between 85 and 95% of the energy it produces into heat rather than visible light, meaning these bulbs get HOT HOT HOT. A 100W incandescent can reach temperatures upwards of 300° F!

CFL (Compact Fluorescent Light) bulbs are more efficient, giving off about 70-90% less heat than incandescents (~130° F on average), and LED (Light-Emitting Diode) bulbs use even less energy and last much longer than both CFLs and incandescents. That way, you can screw in your LED bulbs and not change them out for years while saving energy and reducing the heat emissions from your lights (which is all too important during the sweltering summer months, am I right?).

According to a study conducted by The Clean Revolution, LEDs can provide energy savings between 50-70%, with the potential of providing up to 80% or more savings when used with smart controllers. And as the cost of LEDs continues to drop, these savings are becoming more and more accessible to all.

By using Connected (or "Smart") LED bulbs in your home or business, you have the power to control your bulbs remotely to turn them off while you're not in the room or dim them when you don't need full brightness. This means less energy wasted, less heat emitted, and more savings!

We decided to perform a benchmark test to measure the heat given off through the body of different LED bulbs--both Connected and Regular--after being left on for 3 hours.

For reference, I've included all of the results in this nice little table (based on an ambient room temperature of 75° F / 23.89° C):

Incandescent (average) 300° F 148.9° C
CFL (average) 130° F 54.4° C
Brand/Type of Bulb Avr. Temp (F) Avr. Temp (C)
VCE A19 LED Filament Light Bulb
(Not a "Smart" Bulb)
92.8° 33.8°
Filament Smart LED Bulb by WigWag 93.0° 33.9°
Cree Connected A19 Dimmable LED Light Bulb 102.7° 39.3°
Philips Hue A19 LED Light Bulb 123.6° 50.9°
Belkin WeMo® Smart LED Light Bulb 150° 65.6°
TCP Connected A19 LED Light Bulb 150.8° 66.0°
LIFX Original A21 Wi-Fi Smart LED Light Bulb 157.2° 69.6°
GE Link A19 LED Light Bulb 159.9° 71.1°
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