Shopping for a bulb is seemingly a pretty straightforward process. Oftentimes, brightness is the only factor that people think about when choosing bulbs from different manufacturers. But there are actually a few other factors worth considering, some of which will have an effect on the efficiency of the bulb and how much use you will get out of it.
Power. Light bulbs are typically rated in watts. In the case of LED bulbs, they usually provide more illumination than their higher rated counterparts. Some 9-watt LED bulbs for instance, provide equivalent lighting as standard 60-watt incandescent bulbs. You could therefore get away with less wattage when purchasing LED bulbs. They also produce less heat and have lower power requirements, which are always good qualities in a bulb.
Duration. No matter what type of light bulb it is, it can only last for so long. All light bulbs will fail eventually, but some will last longer than others. You will generally want a bulb that provides several months of service, which is reasonable to expect with modern designs. Longer lasting lights will also save you the cost of replacements, which can add up to significant cost savings over time.
Energy efficiency. Keeping bulbs on for long periods will extract a fairly significant toll on your electric bill. This is why you should choose bulbs that are as energy-efficient as possible. The good news is that newer bulbs are designed for energy efficiency, and they typically consume much less power than older designs. Lower watt bulbs consume less electricity as well, but you do want to have sufficient lighting power, so choose accordingly.
Packaging. Being made of glass, bulbs are particularly prone to breakage. With some of the better brands, equal focus is given to packaging that reduces the risk of breakage. Although it might seem like a minor point, good packaging can actually add value to a bulb.
Cost effectiveness. Price is one of the most important factors when considering any purchase. But more than just the list price, you should also consider how long the bulbs will last. The best bulbs will provide a long service life, which saves you the cost of frequent replacements.