How A Light Bulb Works and Other Interesting Tidbits

Jun 27


Antigone Arthur

Antigone Arthur

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Light Bulb Science Ever wonder how a light bulb works? I mean it seems easy, you flick a switch and "bam" there is light! While not much more complicated than that, there is a little science involved.


To understand how a light works you need to understand certain terms including voltage,How A Light Bulb Works and Other Interesting Tidbits Articles watt and amperage. The energy a light bulb produces is called the voltage of the light bulb. Amperage is the energy a bulb uses to produce light. Watts is the electrical flow or energy produced by a light bulb. This tells you how much electrical energy flows through your light bulb within any given second.

In simple terms voltage refers to how strong the force of electricity is that flows through a bulb. Current tells you how fast electricity flows and resistance tells you how much space a current has to pass through. All of these factors impact your light bulbs performance.

When you flip a light switch, a current of electricity passes through your light bulb. The filament in the light bulb then heats up, eventually producing a glow or the "light" we are used to seeing. Believe it or not, most light bulbs are more adept at producing heat than they are at producing light. Traditional incandescent bulbs waste far more energy than other sources of light simply because a light bulb produces so much heat. That is of course unless you use your light bulbs to heat a room!

Now, most people go for cheap light bulbs. Why not? Cheap incandescent bulbs produce a sufficient amount of light and come in various shapes and styles.

You may find however, with a little experimentation your needs are best met with another bulb.

Let's look at some lighting preferences to decide what bulb may work best for you.

High Quality Light

If you want lots of high quality, natural looking light surrounding you there is no doubt about it... full spectrum light bulbs are the best choice for you. Full spectrum light bulbs provide bright lighting. The "white light" or natural light they produce is equal in intensity to outdoor daylight. Full spectrum bulbs are a good choice for anyone looking for a pick-me-up. These bulbs provide a full array of the ultraviolet spectrum.

Economical and Long Lasting

Halogen light bulbs are a good choice for someone willing to pay a little extra to get a high quality bulb in the long run. Halogen bulbs provide more light than a traditional light bulb. They also last much longer. You can use them indoors or outdoors. They do get hot however, so keep this in mind when buying.

Soft and Energy Efficient Light

If you want soft, energy efficient light you may consider compact fluorescent light bulbs. Compact bulbs produce light that is similar to incandescent bulbs, only softer. These light bulbs also use far less electricity than standard light bulbs and last much longer. Because of this they are a good value. You can use compact bulbs in almost any ordinary lamp. Most cost the same as traditional bulbs, so you save money in the long run. Most compact bulbs last up to 10,000 hours. That's several year's value in a light bulb.

Specialty Needs

Of course, if you have specialty lighting needs there are various bulbs to choose from. Projector light bulbs luminate your projector if you have a projector for personal or business use. Tanning light bulbs, much like full spectrum light bulbs, provide a high intensity light. Tanning bulbs mainly emit ultraviolet A and B light to help tan the skin.

Need a bulb for your automobile? Chances are you need an automotive LED bulb. No problem. Chances are the light in your car signals won't go out for a long time. If you want a light bulb that won't go out, the LED bulb is the best choice for you.

Now you know what types of bulbs are available and how a light bulb works. Always remember there is a light bulb out there for any lighting need! Happy lighting!