Choosing the best light bulb for your needs can be a confusing task. After all, the lighting aisle at your local hardware store likely has dozens of options to choose from. If you’ve ever found yourself perplexed by the many types of light bulbs and wondered what the differences were, Harrison Electric is here to help. As your residential electrician, we’re committed to helping you make the best choice for your home’s lighting needs. The next time you head out to pick up new light bulbs, keep this guide in mind.

Halogen Incandescent Bulbs

These bulbs comply with the federal minimum energy efficiency standard. While they may not be the most energy-efficient option, they are still a better choice than traditional incandescents. These bulbs contain a filament enclosed by a capsule filled with halogen gas. They are slightly more efficient than traditional incandescents because they operate using a “halogen cycle.” This cycle reuses particles created within the filament capsule, making the bulbs last almost twice as long. They are available in many shapes and colors and are a more affordable option than other efficient bulbs.

Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs)

These bulbs use less electricity than traditional incandescent bulbs and typically pay for themselves within nine months of use. Although they are a little pricier than a standard light bulb, they use approximately 25 percent of the energy and last about ten times longer. As far as aesthetics go, they are available in a range of colors, shapes, and sizes, and can also be dimmable. A word of caution, however: They do contain tiny amounts of mercury. When CFLs have reached the end of their life, you should always recycle them. You can learn how to do so by visiting the Environmental Protection Agency’s website.

Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)

LEDs are the most energy-efficient lighting choice and can last up to 25 times longer than traditional incandescent bulbs. They consume about 20 to 25 percent of the energy of traditional bulbs and about 70 to 75 percent less energy than halogen lamps. Ideal for both indoor and outdoor applications, LEDs are available in a wide range of colors, sizes, and shapes. They withstand cold temperatures, and can even be dimmable and motion-sensing. While they are more expensive than any other light bulb, they’ll make up for it in their lifetime cost savings.

Certified Residential Electricians in the Twin Cities

No matter what your electrical needs are, Harrison Electric is here to serve you. We specialize in electrical repair, rewiring, upgrades, and new construction and are dedicated to prompt and professional customer service. To learn more about our services or to schedule a service call, contact us today. You can reach us at 763-544-3300, or you can message us at