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 LED 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 1600 all-directions lumens, but little of that is useful.

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.