When shopping for LED bulbs you will frequently see three key specifications mentioned Lumens and Watts. It is quite common for shoppers to get confused about the differences between these terms. For more details, please contact us at

What is Lumens?

Lumens is a measurement of total light output or in other words the brightness of the bulb. More lumens means it's a brighter light; fewer lumens means it's a dimmer light.

Lumens are to light what

Pounds are to bananas

Gallons are to milk

Lumens let you buy the amount of light you want. So when buying your new bulbs, think lumens, not watts.

The brightness, or lumen levels, of the lights in your home may vary widely, so here's a rule of thumb:

To replace a 100-watt incandescent bulb, look for a bulb that gives you about 1600 lumens. If you want something dimmer, go for less lumens; if you prefer brighter light, look for more lumens.

Replace a 75W bulb with an LED bulb that gives you about 1100 lumens

Replace a 60W bulb with an LED bulb that gives you about 800 lumens

Replace a 40W bulb with an LED bulb that gives you about 450 lumens

What is LUX

What are Watts and Equivalent Watts?

Watts are a measurement of power consumption. With traditional incandescent light sources typically the higher the wattage, the brighter the light. With energy efficient bulbs such as LED this is somewhat different because there is no hard and fast rule to correlate Wattage with output. For example one brand's 9 Watt LED bulb may emit enough Lumens to replace a 60 Watt incandescent but another brand may need to use a less efficient LED, lets say 12 Watts worth to create enough lumens to replace a 60 Watt bulb. This is why as we mention above, it is more important to take a look at Lumens versus Watts.

We often speak to customers who are surprised by how few watts our LED lights are, they often assume that because they are low wattage units, that they must not be bright. This is a common misconception, and it is based on a misunderstanding of what watts measure. Watts are a measure of the power used, not the amount of light produced. If you are interested in learning about the brightness of a light, it is important to ask how many lumens the light produces.

The difference between lumens and watts

Something else consumers need to understand while analyzing CFL vs LED bulbs is the difference between lumens and watts. Consumers are used to buying light bulbs based on watts, or how much energy they consume. It didn’t matter how much light (lumens) they provided. Now, as a way to differentiate LED vs CFL bulbs, manufacturers are classifying the new energy-efficient bulbs by their lumens. You are buying your bulb based on the amount of light you want rather than the energy used by the bulb.

Admittedly, it can be confusing. Here’s the basic point to keep in mind: More lumens equals more brightness. But exactly how many lumens is equivalent to what was once, say, a 60-watt bulb? Here’s a breakdown to give you the basic new LED vs CFL light bulb math:

To replace a 100-watt incandescent bulb, choose a bulb with about 1600 lumens.

To replace a 75W bulb, choose a bulb with about 1100 lumens.

To replace a 60W bulb, choose a bulb with about 800 lumens.

To replace a 40W bulb, choose a bulb with about 450 lumens.

To compare LED bulbs with other types of light bulbs look at the packaging. You’ll see the number of lumens produced as well as the wattage of the bulb. Compare the lumen numbers to see if the lightbulbs will give off a similar amount of light, then look at the wattage requirements to see how much energy each bulb will use. Using these two numbers you can easily identify how bright a light will be and how much energy it will consume. To choose the most energy efficient bulb for your needs, find ones that have the light output that you need, then choose the one that has the lowest wattage.

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