General Lighting FAQ’s

Q1: How do you measure the brightness of a light?

The brightness of the light output is measured in lumens and lumens/Watt (lm/W) indicates the brightness per unit of power input. This is known as the efficacy of the bulb. The higher the number the better. The old incandescents had an efficacy of about 15 lm/W, whereas the best modern LEDs can be 100 lm/W.

Q2: How much light do I want?

Usually this is a matter of taste and depends on what you need the light for, though older people often like brighter lights than the young. With new building work, the Building Regulations require certain fittings to be dedicated low-energy. This may mean installing an integrated fitting, so that the bulb cannot be replaced with a less energy-efficient one.In offices and shops there are often a minimum or recommended levels of lighting, measured in lumens per Watt (lm/W).

Q3: How long will my bulbs last?

The life span of a bulb has to be shown on the box and is tested according to EU procedure. With many integrated fittings there is a manufacturer’s guarantee for the first few years. The new LEDs have a life span of thousands of hours, so you may never have to replace them. For instance, if a bulb lasts 10,000 hours and you use it, on average, for 2 hours a day across the year, then it will last nearly 14 years. 

Q4:  What sort of bulb should I buy? 

Ensure you know the type of light fitting you require, for example bayonet or screw cap. We stock a range of different fittings including the small bayonet and screw caps.  Secondly, consider the use of your particular light and size of the bulb appropriately. Small bedside lights will require less power (Watts) than a bulb to light an entire room.


Q1: What is an LED?

Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are the new type of low-energy lights: they use about a tenth of the electricity that went into an incandescent bulb and a quarter of the power required in a compact fluorescent light (CFL). Some LEDs are dimmable but you will need to specify this before purchase, they last for thousands of hours, they do not flicker, they come on instantaneously and switching them off and on does not wear them out. They come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, including direct replacements for incandescents, strings, tubes. They are often integrated into the fitting, so the fitting and the bulb are replaced together. Many of the latter have a precise beam angle, as the light is not as diffused as with some of the older sources.

LEDs can provide light in a variety of colours. Some are fixed (e.g. always a white/blue colouration), some can be provided in a range of colours within the same fitting, either automatically, or with a remote control.For the technically minded, an LED is a semi-conductor device that emits narrow-spectrum light when electrically charged. LED’s are being improved all the time and are definitely a large part of the future of lighting technology. LEDs are improving by the week, getting cheaper and are probably a lot brighter than you might imagine. You do get what you pay for with LED technology: the cheapest LED lighting is only really useful for soft mood lighting and is unlikely to be as reliable and durable as the more expensive products. Using waterproof LED lighting for outdoor uses and around wet areas such as bathrooms and swimming pools provides a safe, low voltage method of providing illumination.

Q2: Are LEDs good for the environment? 

Using less electricity means that there are less emissions of carbon dioxide from power stations that burn fossil fuels. This is good for the environment and lessens our impact on the climate. Q3: Should I replace my halogens with LEDs?  Definitely. LED bulbs can be used to replace halogen bulbs, in the same fittings. With 12v systems (MR16 bulbs) you may have to change the transformer, but with 240v bulbs (GU10 code) you do not need to.

The LEDs quickly pay for themselves with reduced electricity and, because of their greater durability, you are not constantly purchasing replacement halogens. Less climbing on ladders is an added bonus!Halogen lamps are due to be phased out of the market over the next few years, probably from 2018, so it is a good idea to start looking for more energy-efficient alternatives now. 


Q1: What are CFLs?

Compact  fluorescent lights (CFLs) are small, folded fluorescent tubes. They can be spirals, U-shaped,  or a double D-shape (like the element at the bottom of a kettle). They were the first low-energy bulbs and directly replaced incandescent bulbs. Some were slow to warm up, others had a slight flicker and few of them were dimmable. We still stock many of them, but they are being replaced by LEDs. The start-up time is different for each model.

The reflector and spiral bulbs have instant light and require no ‘start up’ time at all. As a very simple guide, the most compact fittings, such as small spotlights, often start up more slowly than the larger models.

Q3: Do CFLs contain mercury?

And isn’t that bad for the environment? Energy saving bulbs contain only tiny traces of mercury – imagine a pellet smaller than the tip of a biro. What’s more, in the long term, CFL technology will actually help less mercury to pollute the air. This is because burning fossil fuels like coal is the biggest source of mercury in the air. And as energy saving bulbs use 75% less electricity than a traditional bulb, they mean far less mercury is released into the atmosphere overall.Remember to always recycle your used bulbs, for example at your local authority’s recycling centre. 


Q1:  What forms of payment do you accept? 

We accept all the major credit and debit cards including Visa, Mastercard, Switch, Solo and Meastro. Unfortunately we do not accept Visa Electron. We can also accept payment via paypal or cheque, but goods will not be sent until funds have cleared. Please contact us to pay by cheque/paypal.

Q2:  Is online payment secure?

Please see the Security page for details of our security policy

Q3: How long does delivery take?

Have a look on the Delivery page for all things relating to delivery

Q4: The bulb that I ordered does not fit, what can I do? 

It’s your choice. You can either try to find another use for the bulb or return it to us and exchange it for a different model.

Q5: Returns policy for faulty lights? 

We recognize that our products can be damaged in transit. We try very hard to prevent this with careful packaging, but mistakes do happen. Please take a photo of the damaged packaging and products, as you received them, and return them (See our T&C for more specific details). We will then send you exact replacements. Similarly, should you find that your 8000-hour bulb has not lasted 6 months, we will replace it free of charge. Please always quote your invoice number.

Q6:  Why do you show discontinued stock?  

Manufacturers are always modernising and updating their products. Sometimes the changes are minimal and not identifiable to the customer. Sometimes the whole line is terminated. We often continue to show the item as we have very similar alternatives available – we provide the link where we can, otherwise, we encourage you to phone us and discuss these options.

Q7:  What is the effect of something not being in stock?  

We keep our most popular items in stock. With other products they will be purchased to fulfill your order, this is fine, but may add a couple of days to the time it takes to deliver them to you.  LED Lighting LED Lighting makes coloured lighting effects in your home and garden possible. An LED, or light emitting diode uses a fraction of the power of other light sources and so is a very energy efficient way of lighting your home. So for a great range inLED Lighting  click on our online catalogue. Low voltage lighting. Over the passed few years Low Voltage Lighting  has become very fashionable. There are many different types of ow Voltage Lighting available from LED  lights to the more common halogen light bulbs . Because Low Voltage Lighting is different to the normal kind of light bulb that you might be used to, there may be some special equipment that you need in order to get the Low Voltage Lighting to work properly. More notably the presence of a special kind of transformer that serves to reduce the voltage going into the light system. Plugging the Low Voltage Lighting directly into the mains will serve to burn out the bulb very quickly.

The site here has a great range of bulbs available to choose from, so for a great deal come on in!