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1 Aug, 2021

LED Work Light Buyers Guide For 2021

LEDs have rapidly replaced their less efficient, incandescent counterparts. Whether they’re used for off-road adventures, camping, emergency repairs, agriculture or construction – a standard LED light will deliver a safe, clear and highly visible environment.

Modern LED lighting technology offers several advantages over traditional lights and have consequently erupted in popularity across vehicles and job sites the world over. Besides providing longer and stronger lighting, LEDs bulbs also reduce your carbon footprint.

If you’re here to find out which LED work light is right for your vehicle or job site (or both), you’ve come to the right place.

Why should you use LED work lights?

The benefits of LED work lights include:

Brightness & intensity

LED lights can emit intense levels of lighting, which is why we no longer measure brightness in wattage. Now, we look directly at a bulb’s lumen output.

No heat build-up

LEDs efficiently turn about 70% of their energy into light. This makes them materially more efficient than alternative bulbs. For comparison, it only takes a 9-watt LED bulb to match a 40-watt incandescent.

Safer

Since LEDs maintain a much lower temperature than their alternatives, they’re generally safer for both cars and the workplace.

Longevity

LEDs generate light in a manner that drastically extends the lifespan of the bulbs, helping them last for up to 50 000 hours!

Durability

Modern LED work lights have strong casing and mounting brackets, as well as water and dust resistance. They’re perfect for long distance travels and long-term projects.

A wider colour range

LEDs don’t need filters or gels to adjust their colours, the bulb itself changes colour and can hold it’s setting until the light itself dies!

Colour Temperature

The longer you work in the dark, the more important ideal light conditions are to ensure you stay awake and focused. LEDs offer high colour temperatures of around 6,500 Kelvin, thus guaranteeing illumination just like daylight. LED light increases concentration and enables more precise and productive work because the human eye perceives it as white daylight. This light is less tiring to the eyes and improves your colour vision.

Reliability

LEDs perform magnificently in cold temperatures; can withstand intense vibrations and impacts because they don’t have filaments; and their extra stability makes them handle weather fluctuations brilliantly.

Why do LED lights cost more?

LED components simply cost more. Circuit boards, a rare earth compound, drivers, and occasionally yellow phosphor can’t be cheap.

Bear in mind that light quality varies greatly across LEDs, which will have a dramatic effect on pricing, and that while LEDs cost more off the bat, they’re actually cheaper in the long run.

Work light prices generally range from R465 to R3070.

Types of LED work lights

Portable LED lights

Portable, or handheld work lights are similar to flashlights – they’re small, bright, and can easily accompany workers into tight spaces.

Handheld lights cast a wide beam of unconcentrated light to illuminate the entire work area, while flashlights tend to focus their beam onto one small area.

Holding a work light obviously isn’t always an option, so many come with hooks or magnets so you can hang them overhead. These lights can be really convenient for the trades.

Fixed Mount (Clamp-based) LED lights

Clamp-based LED work lights do exactly as the name suggests – clamp onto surfaces.

These LED lights are perfect for mounting onto vehicles or stands for farm work, large construction projects (renovations, excavations, etc), or just fun off-road adventures!

LED work light considerations

Purpose

What do you need these LED work lights for?

Every project or adventure has its own lighting needs. Large projects featuring wide-open spaces need mounted LEDs to occasionally brighten entire floors. If this is what you need, these Hella’s might be a good choice.

If you’re looking for a light that’ll shine bright for 224m, then you would go for something like this.

Brightness and adjustability

Driving or working with an underly or overly bright light is difficult to say the least, and there are actually a few risks involved with brightness configuration.

A flick of the wrist with an overly bright handheld LED can temporarily blind someone, and a light that’s too dim simply can’t do its job as a light.

Powerful LED work lights offer the most flexibility between 3000 and 10 000 lumens.

Weather

Outdoor lighting 100% requires waterproof and dust resistant LEDs – you don’t want the elements to destroy vulnerable LED lights.

IP67 protection means the LED light is resistant to dust & can be submerged under one meter of water for up to half an hour. IP68 offers protection for up to 1.5 meters and the same amount of time.

If you’re in hot or cold conditions, then you need to be certain that your lighting can withstand the temperatures. Operating temperatures for these LED lights typically range between -40°C to 60°C.

Power and efficiency

For off-road driving, if you’re familiar with your chosen routes, you’ll know what the lighting requirements of the journey are. Super uneven paths covered in low visibility conditions will necessitate lights that can pierce through the weather conditions and provide enough vision to safely react to the environment.

For job sites, consider what the power situation of the area will be. Are there outlets? Will you need to use battery-powered lights? LEDs can work on both AC and DC power, so many lights are cordless and use a rechargeable battery.

Once you’ve got that cleared up, you can take a look at the efficiency and power-related specs of your desired work lights, match them to your job requirements, and calculate the logistics of running the site.

Colour Temperature

Incandescent lights need filters to create different colours and shades, but LEDs offer a range of colours and colour temperatures without the need for filters or gels that burn out over time.

A kelvin (K) rating describes the colour temperature of light on a scale of 1 000 – 10 000. The brighter the light, the higher its kelvin rating.

A commonly recommended colour temperature range for work environments is 5 500K – 6 500K.

For reference, daylight sits at around 5 500K.

Warranty

High-quality LED lighting will usually come with a warranty of at least one year, and like most products – the higher the price, the better the warranty (usually).

Price

Like we mentioned earlier, LED work lights are initially more expensive, but over the long-term they’re considerably more cost effective than their alternatives.

How many lumens do you need for your car or job site?

Here’s a quick conversion chart to help you calculate how many LED lights you’ll need (if you’re familiar with your incandescent usage):

Incandescent vs LED wattage comparison

IncandescentLED
40-watt incandescentLED watt range of 9-13 (450 lumen output)
60-watt incandescentLED watt range of 13-15 (800 lumen output)
75-watt incandescentLED watt range of 18-25 (1100 lumen output)
100-watt incandescentLED watt range of 23-30 (1600 lumen output)

If you have any queries about choosing the perfect LED work lights for your job site or vehicle, please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us or shop our range by clicking on the link below.



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LED Work Light Buyers Guide For 2021

LEDs have rapidly replaced their less efficient, incandescent counterparts. Whether they’re used for off-road adventures, camping, emergency repairs, agriculture or construction – a standard LED light will deliver a safe,...

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