Consumer research for older and disabled people

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Light bulb prices and savings

Prices of energy-saving light bulbs

  • halogen bulbs cost around £2 or £3
  • CFL bulbs cost from about £2 up to almost £30 for very specialist bulbs - but most are less than £10
  • LED bulbs cost between about £10 and £35

Of course, energy-saving light bulbs are not cheap, but they do last longer than old-fashioned bulbs and use much less electricity. For instance, if you buy a CFL bulb for £6, it should pay for itself in a year.

Features such as having a light bulb that you can dim or that starts quickly usually cost a few extra pounds. But don't forget you may be using the bulb for around 10 years, so if you want the extra features, it's worth paying for them.

Financial and energy savings

Note that the 'energy saving' described in the table below is as compared to an old-fashioned, incandescent bulb. The financial saving over 10 years is an estimate compared to an old-fashioned bulb and includes the cost of replacement bulbs.

Bulb type CFL Halogen LED
 
Price (guide) £2 - £10 £2 - £3 £10 - £35
Energy saving up to 80% up to 30% up to 90%
Durability 10 years 2 years 20+ years
Dimmable some CFLs yes some LEDs
Instant start no yes yes
Use with timers or photocells no yes no
Use in cold areas no yes yes
Saving over 10 years £69 £7 £72

Last updated: June 2014


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