Saturday, April 15, 2017

Review, Elco ELSF1030W 6" LED Disk Light, 750 lumens, 3000°K, 11.5 watts

Why must I always buy LED disk lights online, not finding useful lights in local hardware or big box stores, or through local electrical distributors at a fair price? At a recent conference, I asked this of an exhibitor for the largest distributor in my region, Platt. We pondered OLED downlight offerings at the Platt web site .  They offer this, that I had not yet tried.

The box top has a bar code, that reads 633999 187867. 
Search UPC 633999 187867 , and find that in retailer packaging, this light is called "Arvid." See that my good-volume $16 contractor price, is really nice. Retailers like Walmart mark this light up, out of reach, at $57! Unwary buyers paying that price and collecting dead bugs, will not advance in their acceptance of LED lighting better than cheap, stupid light bulbs.

I like the simple cardboard packaging. I will decide this is a keeper, but for now don't need anything in the accessories bag. The plate in the bag is for various attachments to can lights, with a good array of springs.

There seem to be ample diodes. Good. Perhaps then I can put up with all of the holes demanding a perfectly sealed junction box (bug proof).

A gasket is needed to keep bugs from entering at the rim. I doubt this foam holds up over twenty or thirty years of service, and don't like prospects this can remain bug free. Here note difficulty with the lens key attachment. At installation, I can propel the key rotation with force of fingertips. There are instruction arrows Open/ Close on the lens, but patience is needed in finding enough removal torque. Slide the lens back and forth to overcome friction.

The weak gasket works only at an outside edge, and does nothing to cover key holes.

Remarkably low glare is the best reason to want this light. The friendliness to gaze upon is very noticeable.

Where the Elco ELSF1030W competes with Utilitech 0752125 lights in Lowe's stores , let us be aware of much better attachment means possible, that bypass all bug issues. I would buy the Utilitech lights, but will not put up with foolishness in the inattention to glare.

Have I overlooked more, at Platt?

I have by other means tried only one of the listed Green Creative offerings, 4" Click, 600 lumens . I will not make large ceiling cuts demanded with the wafer-thin edge-lighted luminaires.

There are more lights to try. I hope there is growing acceptance of downlights that are not in a can, recessed needlessly, despite a still-evident quest for cheapness. 

Review, CANARM 35869 4" LED Disk Light, 900 lumens, 3000°K, 12 watts

Here is another LED disk light offering at Amazon that looked promising despite a rather high price, $42.99 each. It seems pretty enough. Shapely. I assign a product number as the second set of digits in the box bar code.

The packaging is simple and compact.

The thin lens is engaged with three loose-fitting keys. I reported in my Amazon review it hardly wanted to stay on. All such lenses admit bugs at a slow pace at their periphery. For most installers, the bug problem will be from backside access through brightly lighted keyways that can not be covered, unless the junction box is perfectly sealed to ceiling spaces. My greater unhappiness is with the absurd single diode.

Diode and array luminance is thoughtless and mean. Cheap.

This light kit has one really large virtue. See the steel segments provided, called Adaptor Plate. This plate is what we need  to grab box screws at 3 1/2" pitch, where petite luminaire holes are at 2 3/4" pitch. This is much better than ring adaptors mentioned for luminaire 4" GetInLight .

This is really nice. Sturdy.

With the awful glare problem, I see no reason to put up with bug prevention measures only I can take using my flexible grout and RACO 175 boxes. Others have not yet admitted the challenge, to seek a solution. We must not tolerate bug fouling in luminaires that may else be maintenance-free forever.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Sylvania 73676 LED Disk Light Product Review

In the prior post ,  I concluded that Sylvania again offers a LED disk light of some interest to consumers, readily found at Polar Ray and at Gordon Electric, and not found at Amazon. Digging deeper at Amazon, I do find similar lights, packaged as Product 73676 (900 lumens, 13 watts), and 73677 (700 lumens , 10 watts), available in random small quantities from various suppliers. I bought one 73676. It is of smallest volume, simple cardboard packaging, that an installer expects, and that any consumer appreciates.

At left, 75045. At right, 73676. Both have structure that penetrates a ceiling junction box despite compact surface mount of the converter block. The 75045 has seven positions for sets of spring clips to mate with can lights (an improvement), and 73676 a usual five.

The penetrating structures are not for wiring strain relief, and do not help in finding spring clip engagement with the mounting bracket.

Sylvania lenses pop off by flexing the luminaire plastic rim. Clockwise from upper left are 70732v1, 75045 and 73676, moving against progress to greater glare.

Call the 73676 diodes round, 3 mm dia, that of the phosphor shape.

73676 is inferior to 75045 in all respects. Surely 73676 is discontinued, and no decent Sylvania Ultra LED disk lights  are on offer at Amazon or in any big box store.

I will get rid of the 73676 where glare is tolerated in someone's attic. No one else should buy them. Where I have made a purchase, I can leave a negative review at Amazon, about unloading of old junk. I'm still looking for decent bug-proof  low-glare lights I may proudly offer, missing those discontinued, Nicor DLS10 and Cost Less Lighting disks. 6" Glimpse of 2016 is the only contender with modest glare and bug proof. 4" Glimpse of 2016 are nice, only for an installer able to install an airtight can or junction box, blocking bugs.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Sylvania 75045 LED Disk Light Product Review

900 lumens LED disk lights from Sylvania are again available, where Lowe's stores have replaced Sylvania-labeled offerings, with labeling Utilitech Product #0752125, less-bright, at 700 lumens. Now buy 900 lumens lights via Polar Ray , as single display packs, or via Gordon Electric Supply , less expensive, with two display boxes per cardboard carton. I hoped there would be less to recycle in the two-pack, and am disappointed. No form of this light is offered at Amazon.

Sylvania 75045 has CRI improved from 82, to 90, and has a less-obtrusive converter block.

The lens is bug proof and you won't need to look beneath, at a rather-small LED engine.

Glare is rather large, compared to the first Sylvania offering, 70732v1. Some other lights are worse. See that state of the art manufacturing in China is without effort to exceed efficacy of 75 lumens per watt.

Here is a brightness comparison on my test stand, with 70732v1 at LHS, and 75045 at RHS. 75045 is a bit brighter, but with spot light behavior, more center concentration of light. Greater glare is visible to the eye.

75045 dimming is silent, and deeper than with 70732.

I am disappointed with the inattention to glare, but will find uses for this light. Recall the less-glaring light engine of 70732 v1. Surely with lights that last a lifetime, we must afford largest diodes that fit on a board.

It seems all such lights are made in the same China factories, without USA leadership. Could Sylvania-boxed lights share the better attachment means found for Utilitech 0752125 copied here from that review? The converter block, not surface-mounted, can be an attachment asset!

800 Lumens LED Bulb Illumination to Side vs. End-On

What shall I do with an old two-bulb lampholder now replaced by a wonderful Lighting Science 6" Glimpse LED disk light? I found it with two antique clear-glass incandescent bulbs, 150 watt and 60 watt, throwing ruinous heat and adequate light in a small hallway. The interesting 150 watt bulb died from a little jostling, before I could use it in comparisons. 

Ah so! I can compare sideways vs. end-on illumination from a couple of 800 lumens LED bulbs of current technology. Above, a non-dimmable Utilitech. Below, an Ecosmart. Both, made somewhere in China.

These bulbs will be at RHS on my comparison test stand. At LHS I have a first-generation Sylvania 70732, 900 lumens, 3000°K.

The combined illumination from two 800 lumens LED bulbs is not more than 600 lumens, far less than that of the 900 lumens LED disk light.

With the LED bulbs end-on to the screen upon porcelain lampholders, they far surpass 900 lumens directional illumination, say 1600 lumens.

If an 800 lumens LED bulb is sideways on the ceiling or in a lamp is sideways to your book, expect it to yield only 300 lumens of practical illumination. Throwing away 60% of the light is a bad idea. We must learn to employ LED lighting in a natural downward direction like sunlight. I have offered similar comparisons in this blog several times. Much of this has been in challenge of leadership from the US Department of Energy, That leadership brought us silly and very expensive bulbs winning the US DOE L-Prize. 

Please look back at posts of this blog, found by  subject search, L-Prize.  

I think I am entitled to impatience with US DOE. Is anyone else watching this?

I am once again looking for leadership in residential LED light manufacturing, from Lighting Science

Here are installation details at the replaced two-bulb ceiling heater. Wiring made dangerous with fractured insulator material is such that weatherization must involve new cooperation between electricians, and access specialists with skills including plaster patching. We need the good LED disk lights too. I chose 6" Glimpse lights, 3000°K,  for my 850 lumens needs in this job. 

Saturday, March 25, 2017

USA Investment In Energy Conservation Through Residential LED Lighting

In the previous post ,  I criticize US Department Of Energy for an important role in our failure so far, to achieve energy saving promised with switch to LED lighting in our homes. 

- - the Department of Energy (DOE) estimates that in 2015, light-emitting diode (LED)-based lamps comprised just 6.4% of the U.S. installed base - - 

Much of the achievement is in swapping point-source light bulbs, where LEDs saving is 75% in electricity cost, not easily achieved 90%, while perhaps diminishing delivered useful light.

I accused that the only offering from US DOE is a misguided mandate of higher light engine efficacy, lumens per watt, to be 75 lumens per watt or more, if we are being green. This poor guidance encourages continued sale of point source bulbs including awful CFL bulbs. Crummy CFL bulbs can cheaply and readily exceed 75 lumens per watt. Affordable and wonderful LED disk lights rarely exceed 75 lumens per watt, but all, at proper times-two multiple for task illumination, far surpass the CFLs.

Here just consider whether we are getting a return for taxes paid. Where public funds are wasted, is US DOE a bad apple? Can US DOE have nobility ever, where it is chiefly the keeper of nuclear weapons production and with that, an unabashed proponent of unaffordable electricity production with nuclear power, a fat cat spending thirty billion dollars a year ,  Ten percent of this huge budget is spent in the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). Couldn't they somehow not bungle our LEDs opportunity?

US DOE fulfills an annual commitment to report upon its effort with the LEDs opportunity in a Solid-State Lighting R&D Plan. Here are  page excerpts from the plan for 2016 .

Extract the following facts:
Congress allocates about $25 million per year for all Solid State Lighting, SSL, activities of US DOE. The total of annual budgets for programs is nearly double this, with contributions from industry, $45 million in 2016. The split of budgets between LED and OLED developments is about 50-50. About $5 million per year is allocated to LED manufacturing research. 

With such little expression of conservation priority here from US Congress, should we expect little or nothing from US DOE? I think we can demand better vision.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Parmida - Another Disappointing LED Disk Light Offered At Amazon

Silly me. I have tried out this light imported from China by Parmida LED Technologies , Downey, CA. Parmida is another pretender of being a manufacturer, enabling unguided Chinese exports to USA. This light is not mentioned at the glossy Parmida web site devoted to can-loading bulbs and LED conversions.

(4-Pack)- 5/6" Dimmable LED Disk Light Flush Mount Ceiling Fixture, 15W (120W Replacement), 3000K (Soft White), ENERGY STAR, Installs into Junction Box Or Recessed Can, 1200Lm, $45.98 . Sale via Amazon and "LED Light Club," an odd holder of inventory, now out of stock but for 5000°K blue-stuff.

I will rely on LED Light Club for refund upon requested return defective.
LED Light Club, Customer Service Phone: 323-593-5205, Amazon Business Seller, Established 2015, Retailer, Top Brands Parmida LED Technologies, LED METRICS.
LED Metrics is an ebay seller of stupid LED A19 bulbs all out-of-stock.
This sounds about as dangerous as making a direct purchase of something cheaper than its cost of USA shipping, from a naive Chinese factory as at DH Gate or Alibaba. 

My first negative impression of these lights was in absolute inability to disengage the lens with the intuitive counter-clockwise force of palm friction, for the first box. The lens came off too easily on the next box, with no detent resistance.

The biggest complaint against this light is the needless concentration of already too-bright diodes, little obscured by the thin lens.

Employ the noted dimensions in the following table of glare comparisons.

I remain surprised to see how high the unsupervised manufacturers in China are pushing the diode luminance. 15 lumens per sq mm is the largest I have yet seen. Other awful lights contend for the record with Array Luminance. Many lights foolishly discontinued in quest of cheapness, have very little glare. This table includes the TorchStar  light previously found most-glaring.

The Parmida light is worse than obviously-cheap TorchStar, only because it is pushed to deliver 50% more light through diodes only slightly more-dispersed. The careless output push is such that the Parmida struggles some to reject heat; it will noticeably warm your hand unlike any other LED luminaire I have tried. The box backside has an overheating caution (see above).

My Canon Digital Rebel does not fully capture the glare. Eyes perceive three brightness zones, one perhaps 2" diameter at center, of dancing angry white sparks.

Let's accuse poor guidance from US Department Of Energy, where glare is not reported on packaging, to disadvantage or ban, cheap LED lights that abuse consumer trust. Absent trust, and locked in for many years with poor choices made, we shamefully fail to conserve energy as promised by LED innovation.

Guidance Given By US Department Of Energy:
The only guidance of our government is in the definition of "high efficacy," lamps worthy of promotion. Approved wording for the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code, IECC, states simply:

HIGH-EFFICACY LAMPS.  Lamps with a minimum efficacy of 75 lumens per watt.

Reason: The wide availability and falling prices of LED lamps makes them a cost-effective option for improving residential efficiency. The proposed threshold of 75 lumens/Watt encourages the use of the new technologies while still permitting many better CFL.

This is a deceitful act to continue production of CFL bulbs for another three years, against the public interest. The deceit requires dismissal of known times-two efficiency advantage of directional downlights for practical illumination, vs. antique point-source lighting.

Please see in above tables, that efficacy greater than 75 lumens per watt is a difficult and perhaps expensive or less-durable reach, for LED lights now on offer. All of the LEDs yet are greatly superior to mercury-leaking, delicate, less-efficient CFLs. 

The roughly factor of two disadvantage of a point source in practical (task) illumination demands that lumens count alone must not serve in this standard of the US Department Of Energy: 
The lumens count of a point-source CFL, reduced by half, could never meet a high efficacy standard.

The failure to distinguish between task-useful directional light, and point source light, leads to misinformation in package labeling of "watt equivalents," the wattage of a comparable incandescent not distinguished whether point source or downlight.

The Parmida box claims equivalence to  120 watts of directional lighting. But how could I know the equivalence except by my own side-by-side comparisons?

I believe a standard of the watt equivalence is in a 500 lumens directional LED, compared to a 100 watt point-source incandescent. 1200 directional lumens scaled thus, is 1200/500*100 = 240 watt equivalent point-source. Divide by two for 120 watt equivalent directional incandescent.

At LHS, Parmida. At RHS two 65 watt incandescent floods. The 1200 lumens Parmida should be very similar to 130 watts of incandescent flood, about 1200 lumens.The Parmida is in fact less illuminating.

At LHS, Parmida. At RHS two 72 watt Philips EcoVangage "100 watt" incandescent point-source. The 1200 lumens Parmida is about 60% less illuminating than 200 watts of point source incandescent.

At LHS 900 lumens first-version Sylvania 70732 LED Disk. At RHS two 72 watt Philips EcoVangage "100 watt" incandescent point-source. The 900 lumens, Sylvania is perhaps more illuminating than 200 watts of point source incandescent.

At LHS 900 lumens first-version Sylvania 70732 LED Disk. At RHS, 1200 lumens Parmida. The 1200 Parmida is less illuminating than Sylvania with 900 lumens. I believe this proves less usefulness of LED light highly concentrated at center of a lens. 

Package labeling of equivalent incandescent lighting is consistently of point source. Here is a label of the 2016 version of 6" Glimpse, 850 lumens, 11 watts.

These side by side comparisons, and relating of directional lumens to point source lumens, inform GREAT FOLLY in the quest to get many more lumens from a directional LED than are needed to match the illumination by a point source light of watt equivalence as point source. Why would one construct a direction LED luminaire on a usual eight-foot ceiling to put out 1200 lumens in replacement of a 75, 100 or even a 120 watt point-source incandescent?  Where 1200 directional lumens would match a 240 watt hot-hot-hot point source bulb, is that what was wanted?

Who is to blame for this naive exercise by some Los Angeles buyers of junk, ill-conceived at some Chinese factory? Will the naive sellers give me my money back? If not from  those losers, then perhaps a loss recovery through Amazon? And, where this was listed by Amazon, has Amazon done me a disservice? I expect some apologies.

At 3/21/2017, in monitoring of appreciation of my writing at statcounter, I find this visit:

China FlagChina, China Unicom Jiangsu Label IP Address  
(0 returning visits)

Win7, Chrome 54.0, 1280x1024 (Keywords Unavailable) 
20 Mar19:55:37
I speak there of the difficulties of direct China to USA commerce in the quest of LED lighting innovation, concluding it simply does not work. I have been enjoying the avoidance of distraction by directing all email from DHGate and alibaba, to SPAM. I wonder what this China reader is thinking.