Become a TFP Supporter Pool Math Forum Rules Pool School
Results 1 to 16 of 16

Thread: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Orange County, CA
    Posts
    696

    LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Anyone out there look into LED bulbs for landscape lighting? A few years ago, I picked up a kit with LED fixtures for low voltage landscape lighting. But, these had this horrible blue tint and they did not put out that much light. More recently, soft white LED bulbs in bi-pin MR16 format have come onto the market, and I'm wondering if anyone has tried these out by replacing their existing halogen bulbs with these? They run on 12V AC or DC, so existing setups should be retrofittable.

    We have about 35 fixtures with 20 and 50W bulbs in the back yard, and another 20 in the front yard. You add that up, and it's starting to get quite expensive. But, recently I found on Amazon these soft white MR16 LED fixtures that look pretty close to halogen bulbs. I'm going to try them out to see how they look overall. I've been thinking about converting over to LED for quite a while, but the big box stores sell MR16 bulbs at around $25 on up. I've recently found 6W soft white LED fixtures that claim they have equivalent output as a 50W halogen that are priced around $3.50 or so. I'll give it a try. Any thoughs?
    38K in ground pool with attached spa. Current equipment: Easytouch 8 (521150) with IC-60 SWCG with web control by Autelis, 1x Pentair IntelliFlo 011018 pump (for filter), 1x Pentair 2HP WhisperFlo pump (for waterfall), 2X Pentair IntelliBrite 5G 12V lights, Pentair MiniMax400 NG Heater, Pentair SMBW2060 DE filter. Zodiac Barracuda MX8 cleaner on dedicated cleaner line. Lighting/home automation controlled by Insteon/ISY-99i.

  2. Back To Top    #2
    bibeaud's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    P'Burg NJ
    Posts
    73

    LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    I am using LED lights purchased from Amazon that use 3.6 W consumption instead of 18W for my Malibu landscape lights. The T10 wedge base fit the Malibu T5 wedge base. 18 x 5050 SMD output in Warm White at 3500k with the output equal to 30 Watts. The have the usual yellowish not bluish glow to them.
    11,000 Gal Trilogy "Utopia" Fiberglass Pool, 1HP Jandy Pump, Jandy CS200 Cartridge Filter, Raypak 199k BTU Heater, Liquidator, CMP Off-Line Chlorinator. Cleaners: Polaris 360, Blue Diamond, Poolvernuegen Pressure

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Orange County, CA
    Posts
    696

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Ah yes, I just saw those T10 base SMD bulbs. Looks like a good way to go. We are using a different brand from Lowes (all metal with 20-50W halogen MR16 bulbs). Right now, I'm in the test mode, and I've purchased a few different brands, including one that is $3.50. I will say that these really look great and produce much less heat, as I tried one out last night. It look a little brighter than the 20W halogen bulb it replaces, and gives something like 500 lumens, which is equivalent of a 50W bulb. But, the color temperature is pleasing. I'm definitely going to purchase a bunch of them to outfit the yard. I think this is probably the way to go (e.g. retrofit), as the ones that come with LED bulbs in kit form are always way too bluish.
    38K in ground pool with attached spa. Current equipment: Easytouch 8 (521150) with IC-60 SWCG with web control by Autelis, 1x Pentair IntelliFlo 011018 pump (for filter), 1x Pentair 2HP WhisperFlo pump (for waterfall), 2X Pentair IntelliBrite 5G 12V lights, Pentair MiniMax400 NG Heater, Pentair SMBW2060 DE filter. Zodiac Barracuda MX8 cleaner on dedicated cleaner line. Lighting/home automation controlled by Insteon/ISY-99i.

  4. Back To Top    #4
    Liteguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Cave Creek, AZ
    Posts
    49

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Craig, In your area try the company called Hydroscape. Landscape supply house. They will have what you are looking for regarding LED lamps for landscape lights. I am not affiliated.

    thx
    Steve-Liteguy

    13K Pebble-tech Pool, ECO pump, IntelliChlor SWG, DE

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Orange County, CA
    Posts
    696

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Liteguy - thanks for the post. I'll check them out. I have been trying a few different MR16 LED models, one that is quite cheap at about $4 each, and one that is about $10. The advantage of the latter is that it puts out the equivalent of a 50W halogen bulb but only uses 6W. The color temp of both is not exactly that of a standard halogen bulb, but is close enough. I think I actually like the color of the LED bulbs a bit better. I've gotten busy on an EasyTouch install, but now that it's completed, I'll get back to this project and post some details.
    38K in ground pool with attached spa. Current equipment: Easytouch 8 (521150) with IC-60 SWCG with web control by Autelis, 1x Pentair IntelliFlo 011018 pump (for filter), 1x Pentair 2HP WhisperFlo pump (for waterfall), 2X Pentair IntelliBrite 5G 12V lights, Pentair MiniMax400 NG Heater, Pentair SMBW2060 DE filter. Zodiac Barracuda MX8 cleaner on dedicated cleaner line. Lighting/home automation controlled by Insteon/ISY-99i.

  6. Back To Top    #6

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    if you go to reefcentral.com and look at what some of those guys are doing with LED in the lighting section you might get some really good ideas for landscaping and pool lighting. the last time I messed around with LEDs for a fishtank was a few years ago and those were much more powerful and efficient than the ones in stores, all three watt bulbs that could be wired together or separately and dimmable. the brand was CREE look it up on google. they must be much better and more efficient now.

    you would have to look in the DIY part of the forum along with the lighting section

  7. Back To Top    #7

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by joseney21
    if you go to reefcentral.com and look at what some of those guys are doing with LED in the lighting section you might get some really good ideas for landscaping and pool lighting. the last time I messed around with LEDs for a fishtank was a few years ago and those were much more powerful and efficient than the ones in stores, all three watt bulbs that could be wired together or separately and dimmable. the brand was CREE look it up on google. they must be much better and more efficient now.

    you would have to look in the DIY part of the forum along with the lighting section
    Fellow fish tank buddy here.
    I don't see how using these leds would work at all.
    The crew leds used over fish tanks have a certain spectrum and par to be used over a reef tank. Not something you need for outdoor lighting. The fixtures they build are not cheap.

    For reference i ran led par38s over my tank and cost per bulb are about 80 bucks.
    There is much more cheaper alternatives that are made for landscaping applications.
    Just my 2cents.
    My pool:
    15x30 inground concrete pool w/spa and spillover, all under screen enclosure
    Hayward C1200 StarClear Plus Cartridge Filter
    Jandy Laars LX400 propane heater w/120 gal above-ground tank
    Jandy AquaLink RS OneTouch controller w/PDA remotes and computer control
    JVAs control pool/spa switch and also allow drain opening
    Hayward Navigator

  8. Back To Top    #8

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    $80 bucks per bulb? not what i'm talking about. the way one can make a fishtank light by combining blue and white leds one can also use the same concept by combining 3 or 4 single leds for natural looking light. the leds i remember were about $3-$5/ Led. the amount may increase depending on the amount of light desired but considering that this should last you a lifetime I figured it would be money well spent.

    just throwing ideas out there

  9. Back To Top    #9

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    80 bucks a bulb was for a par38 with 5 cree leds each.
    Yes, 3-4 bucks a led is correct. But then you need to mount them on a heatsink, wire them, and add a driver. Buckbuck drivers are cheap and can run up to 5 bulbs I beleive. Meanwell drivers are what most use and can run 14-18 leds plus you can hook up dimmers to them. Drivers aren't cheap either. Plus you would have to make it waterproof which would be a task. Its a good thought but I think when its all said and done it would be cheaper to just buy something made for outdoor lighting.

    For pricing references this is the website most buy there parts from for the DIY light.
    http://WWW.Rapidled.com
    My pool:
    15x30 inground concrete pool w/spa and spillover, all under screen enclosure
    Hayward C1200 StarClear Plus Cartridge Filter
    Jandy Laars LX400 propane heater w/120 gal above-ground tank
    Jandy AquaLink RS OneTouch controller w/PDA remotes and computer control
    JVAs control pool/spa switch and also allow drain opening
    Hayward Navigator

  10. Back To Top    #10

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    all sounds about right. and I guess the waterproofing would be the biggest task.

  11. Back To Top    #11

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Orange County, CA
    Posts
    696

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Actually, Cree manufactures many of the brightest LEDs. The $10 MR16 bulbs use three 2W Cree LEDs, and they are really fantastic. I've decided that the $4 bulbs just don't put out the equivalent of the $10 bulbs, despite claims of similar lumen output as a 50W bulb. I'll have to find the Amazon link, but these will be the bulbs I will use for the entire backyard (about 40 bulbs).
    38K in ground pool with attached spa. Current equipment: Easytouch 8 (521150) with IC-60 SWCG with web control by Autelis, 1x Pentair IntelliFlo 011018 pump (for filter), 1x Pentair 2HP WhisperFlo pump (for waterfall), 2X Pentair IntelliBrite 5G 12V lights, Pentair MiniMax400 NG Heater, Pentair SMBW2060 DE filter. Zodiac Barracuda MX8 cleaner on dedicated cleaner line. Lighting/home automation controlled by Insteon/ISY-99i.

  12. Back To Top    #12
    Liteguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Cave Creek, AZ
    Posts
    49

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    As full disclosure, I am in the landscape lighting business here in AZ. Not promoting, just offering friendly advice. I would agree with CraigMW about the CREE dye being the best. CREE is the only dye manufacturer that offers it's proprietary silicon carbide substrate which is very robust and ideal for landscape lighting in enclosed fixtures. Having said that, one needs to be aware of the CREE knockoffs from china. At 10 bucks on Amazon or Ebay, you are probably getting a knockoff product and won't be anywhere near 500 lumens or a 50 watt equivalent. Ask for a US Govt Lighting facts sheet (for 10 bucks they won't have it). Secondly, for longevity purposes you would want an LED with fully potted PCB's for moisture proofing to prevent premature rusting and failure along with FCC compliant drivers so as not to interfere with wireless pool equipment and things like garage door openers. Lastly, look for a 5 year minimum warranty. Now a 50 watt halogen or 5-6 watt LED in landscape lighting (in my humble opinion) is ridiculously bright. At my home I utilize a 20 watt equivalent LED which would be in the 2 to 3 watt range, nice warm white 2700 Kelvin which is plenty. Remember to design with beam angles first and light your architecture before plant material. A high quality MR-16 LED as I have described will run $25 to $30 and the best places to pick them up at this quality is from landscape irrigation houses. Online sales will typically be of the lower quality variety but may work for more budget minded folks. Thank you-steve
    Steve-Liteguy

    13K Pebble-tech Pool, ECO pump, IntelliChlor SWG, DE

  13. Back To Top    #13
    techguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Antelope, CA
    Posts
    2,687

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    So, in the case of CREE, are they only manufacturing the LED elements and the MR16 reflector, body etc are being manufactured by other complies or is CREE manufacturing the entire lamp assembly? Can you suggest a northern CA source?
    -- Guy --
    10K gallons in 21' Round 52 inch wall Aqualeader AG, Hayward Power Flow LX 1.5 HP pump motor, Hayward Perflex EC50AC DE filter w/Cellulose, Wide mouth skimmer, 2013 new Diver Dan (craigslist) to replace the faded old Hayward AquaBug. TF-100

  14. Back To Top    #14
    Liteguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Cave Creek, AZ
    Posts
    49

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Quote Originally Posted by techguy
    So, in the case of CREE, are they only manufacturing the LED elements and the MR16 reflector, body etc are being manufactured by other complies or is CREE manufacturing the entire lamp assembly? Can you suggest a northern CA source?
    CREE just makes the dye
    Steve-Liteguy

    13K Pebble-tech Pool, ECO pump, IntelliChlor SWG, DE

  15. Back To Top    #15

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Orange County, CA
    Posts
    696

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    Cree invented the first blue LED. They do not just produce the dyes, but they engineer and manufacture the LEDs used in a variety of light fixtures.

    http://www.cree.com/about-cree/history-and-milestones

    As for the brightness of the fixtures I've tested, I agree that most are not the equivalent of 50W halogens, much closer to 20W. However, I have found some that I've tested side by side with 50W halogens and they subjectively appear as bright (or perhaps a bit brighter due to their slightly bluer color spectrum). I don't have any idea about longevity... that remains to be seen. But for not much more than halogens (that I am typically replacing about once every 18 months), this is really not a huge issue. Plus, given the number of fixtures we have, spending 3-4x more starts to add up. The energy savings of these bulbs will pay for themselves within their useful lifetime relative to standard halogens assuming they last as long as the halogens do.
    38K in ground pool with attached spa. Current equipment: Easytouch 8 (521150) with IC-60 SWCG with web control by Autelis, 1x Pentair IntelliFlo 011018 pump (for filter), 1x Pentair 2HP WhisperFlo pump (for waterfall), 2X Pentair IntelliBrite 5G 12V lights, Pentair MiniMax400 NG Heater, Pentair SMBW2060 DE filter. Zodiac Barracuda MX8 cleaner on dedicated cleaner line. Lighting/home automation controlled by Insteon/ISY-99i.

  16. Back To Top    #16

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Waxahachie, Tx.
    Posts
    424

    Re: LED bulbs for LV landscape lighting

    try super bright leds .com
    12 x 26 Viking FG IG, Bermuda Model, 3 1/2' to 5', 7000 Gallons, Diamond Series Maya, Hayward 1 1/2 HP Maxflo VS, Hayward Stay Clear Plus Cart Filter C17502(S), Hayward Aqua Rite SWG w/T3 cell, Color Changing FIBERSTAR Lighting, Aqua Bot Supreme Robotic cleaner, Brushed Concrete with CCI Liberty Tan color, Taylor K-2006 test kit, Armor Foundation penetrating concrete sealer(lifetime warranty).

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •