TESTS: Halogen

Tests performed by SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden for the Swedish Consumers’ Association and published in their consumer guide Råd & Rön (“Advice & Findings”).

For easy overview in English, I’ve transferred the most relevant data to my own charts. Black numbers are from the actual tests. Brown are my own, added for comparison and summary. The incandescent columns to the left shows the official recommended incandescent equivalent for that wattage, and the single yellow column shows the difference in lumen (which is the measure of light quantity) between initial measured lumen of each energy saver from its incandescent equivalent to the left. 

Halogen Energy Savers Autumn 2013

2013 Halogen

Halogen Energy Savers 2012 autumn

2012b Halogen

Halogen Energy Savers 2012 spring

2012a Halogen

Halogen Energy Savers 2011

2011 Halogen

Halogen Energy Savers 2010

2010 Halogen

• Light output: Incandescent halogen energy savers turned out surprisingly poor performers compared with their original incandescent bulb equivalents. I knew from manufacturers’ catalogues that they did not give quite 30% more light, but more like 25% (varying somewhat between wattages), but here it seems closer to 15%, similar to other halogen lamps. One more consumer fraud?? Or is the “30% savings” meant to mean “compared to the lowered standard for incandescent bulbs accepted by EU after the ban”? Clearly, the 53W halogen is more suitable as a 60W- than as a 75W incandescent replacement.

• Light reduction after 1 500 hours was a mean of 11%, in the spring 2012 test. In the 2011 test, after 2 000 hours the 2 000 h lamps didn’t last long enough to measure. 2010, light reduction was not tested at all. Update: In the autumn 2012, light reduction was as much as a mean of 25%!

• Lamp life was clearly an issue in the 2011 test, where none of the 2 000 h bulbs lasted that long but some of the 1 000 h bulbs did! In the spring 2012, this issue seems to have been cleared up so that all 2 000 h bulbs were still burning at that time, with many still burning after 3 000 hours, despite their marked life being 2 000 h. Update: In the autumn 2012 test, durability seems to be a problem again, despite all being known brands.

• All halogen lamps light up instantly, even at cooler temperatures.

• No light loss at -25 degrees C.

• Fully dimmable, like all incandescent lamps.

• Colour renditition was naturally excellent: CRI 99-100. Update: Except, oddly, in one IKEA lamp in the autumn 2012 test.

• In the first three tests, R&R found the IKEA bulbs best in the halogen class.

Conclusion: More quality than quantity. Excellent light properties and functionality, except when it comes to energy efficiency. But as they can all be dimmed – and quite beautifully so – it is easy to save that way, instead of going for a lower quality lamp.


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