What Does Integrated LED Mean? Full Guide March 8, 2023 – Posted in: Lighting Information, General Info
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What Is An Integrated LED Fixture?
Integrated LED refers to a type of lighting fixture in which the LEDs are integrated directly into the luminaire. In practical terms, this means that the diodes are built directly into the light fitting, typically on a PCB board. Integrated LED lighting is rising in popularity and becoming increasingly common especially for high efficiency fixtures. This is due to the many advantages offered by these lighting systems, though they do also come with a few disadvantages .
Difference Between LED Bulb VS Integral LED Light
Integrated LED lights differ from more traditional setups featuring replaceable screw-in LED bulbs, in that the LEDs are essentially built into the lighting unit, rather than there being a separate bulb which can be removed and replaced independently from the rest of the light fitting. They both offer you the benefits of LED lighting technology, but the integrated solution does offer some additional advantages. For simple fixtures using integral designs, many brands have made replacing PCB boards easier to act as a “bulb” rather than having to replace the whole fixture.
Benefits of Integrated LED Lighting
Longer Lifetime Than Screw-In LED bulbs
As a result of how they’re installed, integrated LED bulbs have an even longer lifetime than screw-in LED bulbs, which already have impressive longevity. The average integrated LED has a lifespan in the range of 50,000 hours or more, so they last many years, even with high levels of daily use. This longevity is backed up by impressive warranties, which offer customers peace of mind and assurance that they’re going to get the long life they’re expecting.
Integrated LEDs also bring more flexibility and versatility in a number of ways. Partly as a result of not having to cater to the form of screw-in LED bulbs, they are available in a very wide range of shapes, sizes, and color temperatures. This means that whatever your requirements are, you’ll be able to find an option that meets both your practical and aesthetic needs.
Easier & More Control Over Light and Appearance
This added flexibility extends to control options as well. Integrated LEDs have better compatibility with other components such as dimmers and drivers and offer a greater range of control options. These options can even include smart technology, allowing the lights to be controlled remotely, easily linked to motion sensors, or synchronized with your schedule or other technology. All of this makes it easier to ensure that the lights are always set to a comfortable intensity and can be adjusted to fit any mood, as well as easily removing the need for manual control if desired.
Reduced Maintenance Costs
Using integrated lights can also help you save money, as their longer lifetimes mean much less frequent replacements and therefore lower ongoing maintenance costs. This is further assisted by the improved heat dissipation they offer over conventional screw-in LED bulbs.
Better Heat Dissipation
The boards that the diodes are installed can dissipate heat better and spread it across a wider area. These boards can be mounted on additional heat sinks to allow for even better temperature control. This makes them a popular option for high power LED lighting such as high bay lights and office LED lighting. Lights that have poor cooling will also have a shorter lifespan.
Drawbacks of Integrated LED Lighting
Despite all of its benefits, there are some drawbacks to integrated LED systems which are worth being aware of. For example, hotels purchase mostly fixtures that have replaceable bulbs to ensure easy maintenance across a large property .
Installation Is More Complicated Than A Screw-In Bulb.
The installation process for integrated LED lighting is more complex than for traditional LED lighting systems, often significantly so. This means that installation costs will be higher and that the process may take longer. This increase in upfront costs is further compounded by the fact that you can expect the integrated lighting systems themselves to cost more than the alternatives. The increased complexity may also prevent even those with otherwise substantial DIY skills from performing the installation themselves.
Higher Up-Front Cost
This increased cost and reliance on others continues to be a drawback when the system eventually needs replacing. It is more difficult and costly to replace integrated LEDs than screw-in LED bulbs, as the entire lighting unit will need to be replaced, though this is partly mitigated by replacements being less frequent than with other systems.
Lack Of Replacement Options
There is also the risk that, due to the huge variation offered in integrated LEDs and the specialist nature of some of them, you may become reliant on one company to provide the replacements. This won’t necessarily pose an issue, but it could if they choose to raise their prices or the product in question is discontinued or otherwise unavailable. This risk can be reduced by purchasing your fixtures from a reliable supplier with a good reputation to start with.
Potential Uses of Integrated LED Lights
Office LED Lighting
Integrated LEDs can be used in almost any circumstances, but there are some use cases which allow their unique benefits to really shine. In office spaces, the ability to control their brightness can ensure that the working environment is lit to a comfortable level for all employees, reducing the risk of eye strain. Further to that, all companies will appreciate their higher energy efficiency and less frequent replacements. In practical terms, this means a more energy-efficient business, which will keep utility costs down and stakeholders happy, and staff experiencing fewer disruptions due to bulbs failing and needing to be replaced.
High Bay LED Lighting
The business uses of integrated LED lighting aren’t just limited to office spaces though. High bay integrated LED lights can effectively light large workspaces. The brightness of the LEDs combined with their wide beam angles ensure that the whole of the working environment will be well-lit, ensuring that everyone is able to work safely and effectively. As these high bay lights are integrated LEDs, they help with energy efficiency and keeping costs down in much the same way. Many are available with motion sensing options, to even further reduce unnecessary energy usage.
There’s no reason integrated LEDs should be considered as primarily a business option, and they can be a perfect addition to domestic settings too. Integrated LED ceiling lights can give any room a modern and minimalistic space, whilst only taking up a negligible amount of space. This gives a much more open feel, whilst providing practical benefits in the form of increased overhead space. Whilst this is of particular advantage in homes with lower ceilings, it can be appreciated anywhere.
For those with less minimalist tastes, the wide range of designs available means that you’re sure to be able to find an option that fits your preferences. Whether you’re looking for something wall or ceiling-mounted, integrated LEDs offer plenty of choice, ranging from sleek and understated to bold and attention-grabbing.
Whichever design they go with, homeowners will also enjoy the benefits of not worrying needing to worry about replacing bulbs and lower electricity bills each month, meaning continuous savings over other lighting options.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Integrated Led Lights Replaceable?
Whether or not integrated LED lights are replaceable depends on the specific product. Currently most integrated LED fixtures, especially decorative ones, do not have replacement modules while more commercial application lights do. This mostly due to the lifespan of LEDs outlasting LED drivers in most cases. Integral lights are also typically designed to last longer than non-integral lights or bulbs.
How Long Does An Integrated LED Light Last?
Depending on the manufacturer, these lights last between 25,000 to 50,000 hours. When buying integral lighting, keep an eye on the length and strength of the warranty offered to customers to get an idea of the quality. For example, our commercial and wholesale orders come with a standard 5 year replacement guarantee. On the other hand, buying fixtures from third-parties or overseas may result in no warranty at all.
Are Integrated LED Lights Dimmable?
Generally, Yes. Although the dimming type may matter and many manufacturers will have both dimming and non-dimming options so it’s important to pay attention to the specifications before ordering. Another thing to consider is dimmer compatibility as there is more than one way to control the brightness of an LED fixture.
I have been the project manager for Modern.Place since early 2016, spending three of those years working overseas on the manufacturing & procurement side of the LED lighting industry. Constantly learning and passing on knowledge to others while excited for what the lighting industry will involve into next.