home: Outdoor lighting long term, they don’t last long

Well it’s been three and a half years since the start of the pandemic and one of my projects was to fix all the lighting around the house from very high-energy incandescent to LED. So I have a set of lights from 2017 that have been going for six years and a set from 2020 that has been going for three, here’s the net of what is happening, we are saving power, but the bulbs are definitely dying a lot. LEDs don’t seem to last longer than incandescents is the net

I’m sad to say that not all of the choices worked. Even those these LEDa are rated at 50K hours, I’m definitely not getting that life so here’s a quick review of what to buy

Also some of the lights I have from 2017 are still running, but the fancy multi-led colored ones particularly the big ones have had half of them fail.

We have a bunch of these high-wattage bulbs and they seem to last three years or so most of the time. The ones that seem to die the most are the ones that are in the timed lighting. That makes sense, they are on for hours a day so at 4-6 hours on a day every day that is about 5,500 hours. These things are supposed to last 50K hours, but I’m getting much shorter lives, so beware. Of course, these are no-name bulbs. So here is a review of the bulbs I’ve tried and then we will go over the new ones

Bulbs I’ve tried and the results

So I’ll stack rank the bulbs in order of shortness of life and notes about what I’m doing about it, so look to the bottom of the list:

  1. Simba E11 5W 2700, Youbiao Zho E11 100W Warm or YSonline911 E11 100W equivalent. These seem to fail a lot particularly the Simba these all failed in a year. I’m wondering if it is heat related since they are in incandescent enclosures. I might try replacing some of the enclosures, but the particularly bad ones are an underwater sealed thing that seems to go out every six months. The ones that last a bit longer are in incandescent systems that are also sealed. So I’m wondering if I should replace them again, on the other hand since I’m just replacing a $4 bulb its way cheaper than $15 for a whole fixture. The failure mode seems to be that various individual LEDs fail or the whole thing dims. I have a bunch of no names that are no longer available like the Ylaide E11 100W
  2. Z 150W IP66 Colored LED 15W. I’ve never realized that these actually have Bluetooth and you can change colors from an app. About 40% of them have failed though. They are D rated by Fakespot, so I wouldn’t get them again. High Power 16M color LEDs. These have a 50% failure rate after three years. They mainly lose LEDs and end up just with the red LEDs running. I noticed that they are no longer sold at Amazon, so that’s probably a good reason
  3. Hyperikon LED Flood Light 50W 4000 Lumen 5000K IP65. These are really bright and very white, so not great for gardens. They don’t make them anymore, but they’ve been very reliable
  4. Singled Smartsend LED Floodlight 3000K E26 Par38. I’ve been using this in floodlight positions and I think because they are not on much, they are lasting a long time. The 100W equivalents generate 1050 Lumens and are waterproof.
  5. Makergroup S8 Wedge 4W 2700K. I have a bunch that are low voltage and these seem to last a good long time, makes sense, they are much less power at only 4W and they are pretty cheap at $4 each.

New ones ordered

So given this pretty bad experience, the plan is to:

  1. Use up the remaining E11s that I have, after all, they are low power and they may not last long, but its sunk cost
  2. Use up the remaining incandescents. Since the LEDs are not lasting that long, I have a bunch of old incandescents that I might as well use up.
  3. ILC 80W 16M Colors. I’m going to try some of the big LED ones again, these are 80W or 8000 Lumen or 800W equivalents this is for the big trees and are less ugly than the 6000K floodlights I was using.
  4. Melpo 300W IP66, 16M colors. This looks like the same as the terrible Zs, but the Fakespot ratings are higher, so I’ll try a pack.
  5. Explux 25W PAR38 Full Glass 2700K. These use a heavy glass and not the cheap plastic. They cost $15 each so I’ll try them after the incandescents die.
  6. Sylvania Par38 14W, 7-year, 3000K. Well we will see if this really lasts 7 years, I’m not sure how to get the warranty.

I’m Rich & Co.

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