The light bulb in the fixture on the ceiling of my front porch died last
week; I tried to disassemble the fixture and find that it will take
destructive measures to get it apart.
First of all, I'm having a hard time finding an outdoor light fixture as
low profile as the one that's there. There's only maybe 6" or so
between the ceiling of the porch and the top of the screen door.
Secondly, I was wondering if LED lights would be suitable for such an
application, and if so, any specific recommendations would be
appreciated. I feel kinda guilty leaving a 25W incandescent on for
hours just so I can see the doorknob if I come home late at night.
replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
On Fri 25 Jul 2008 05:39:55p, Nate Nagel told us...
Obviously, finding a fixture that fits is the biggest problem. If you can
find a fixture where the socket(s) are mounted horizontally instead of
vertically, you should have room to add a screw-in light sensor control
into which you screw the bulb. We use that arrangement on our front light
and, in fact, use a 7-watt CFL "bug" light. The light doesn't come on
untiil twilight and stays on for about 8 hours. Many of the controls are
adjustable for both when they come on and how long they stay on afterwards.
I doubt seriously if you will find a suitable (or attractive) LED light for
On Sat 26 Jul 2008 05:23:16a, Nate Nagel told us...
It still varies, but most of the ones I have reach their full brightness in
seconds, not minutes. Over ten years ago I was using an early version in a
post lamp at our house in Ohio. It, too, warmed up quickly even in the
winter. It was the type where the tube was separate from the base, so only
replaced the tube once in 12 years. Besides, you mentioned that you'd like
to have the light on when you arrive home. Since you won't be there, does
it matter that much how long it takes to warm up?
Not really, but I guess the engineer/anal retentive part of me thinks
that it does.
I guess the discussion is irrelevant at this point, as I spent the
morning repairing the old light fixture. It's actually kinda cool,
fabricated out of soldered copper L-shapes and has a nice patina (well,
it should, being almost 60 years old.) I didn't see anything online or
in my local hardware emporia that I liked as much, so I went ahead to
see if I could salvage it. I managed to replace the one stud that was
keeping me from disassembling it, ran the shade through the dishwasher,
and for good measure took an old extension cord and cut it up to provide
new leads for the bulbholder, as the originals were a bit brittle.
Actually found some 9W ("40W") CFLs at the Despot this AM when I went to
pick up some vice-grips so one is in there for now, but I think there's
still some 25W incandescents floating around if I'm not happy with it.
(cheap, or environmentally conscious? You decide.)
replace "roosters" with "cox" to reply.
You can get them but they aren't cheap. A couple of sources are
Another option is to put LED bulbs in ordinary fixtures.
lists a variety of screw in LED bulbs, with the brightest being
roughly equivalent to a 60 watt incandescent--again though they aren't
They may be pricey but it may be worth it in the long run.
I live in FL but I have read lots of complaints about cold weather
performance of CFLs.
What is the average life vs CFLs? I have had CFLs with a disappointing
Are they dimmable?
I would expect that the prices will come down as they mature. Just like
anything else that was expensive when first out. For example TVs, VCRs,
computers, digital cameras, etc
The LEDs themselves should be good for more than ten years of
continuous operation, if they are given clean power and adequate
cooling, but they need a power supply to get the right voltage and
that power supply if it's not well made may not last as long. Nice
thing about bulbs with 150 LEDs is that you can lose a few without any
major effect on brightness.
Dimmability depends on the power supply--some have switching supplies
that run them at full brightness from 80-240 volts, which would pretty
well preclude dimming--others may have transformers and rectifiers and
those would in principle be dimmable. Read the fine print on the
specific units you're interested in and if necessary ask the vendor.
The ones with external power supplies should be easily dimmable by
putting a potentiometer in the low voltage wire--just make sure it's
rated for the required current.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.