Blog 8 of 74

LED Light Bulbs for Vacation Rentals

By Ron Lee
Published: 12/22/15 Topics: Comments:

After traveling from near and far, guests are excited to throw open the front door and rush expectantly into the vacation rental home of their dreams. They expect everything to work perfectly and burned out light bulbs can be enough to wreck their entire vacation.

Owners are even more demanding as they forget that bulbs actually break in their own homes as well. Never the less, when arriving at their sacred second home, they quickly blame the housekeepers for failing to make sure every light bulb is working perfectly at all times.

Of course that is an impossible standard to meet because generally conventional incandescent bulbs burn out when the light switch is turned on or turned off. As homes age, electrical wiring goes through miniscule expansion and contraction. In time, the screws that keep outlets and light switches together loosen and teeny tiny changes in amperage jump from wire to wire and screw to base.

How They Fail

The filaments inside bulbs have a life of just 2,000 to 8,000 hours. The constant use of switches or changing of plugs is a big culprit too. Because housekeepers work during day-light hours, outages are not readily apparent. Going room to room to test every light bulb and in every lamp is a good idea but time consuming.

Accent lighting put high up on ceilings or in difficult to reach places make it even tougher for housekeepers to find time to climb ladders or disassemble furniture to replace bulbs.

So Guests and Owners may become unhappy thinking that the housekeepers just don't care to monitor and watch bulbs. Nothing is further from the truth.

Frankenstein Fluorescents

For years, the benefits of fluorescent bulbs have been promoted as cost saving and longer life. Unfortunately, many people find fluorescent light yellowing and undesirable. These can actually make a vacation rental home look worse and make guests unhappy.

Fluorescents are undesirable for use in quality vacation rental homes.

LED Light the Way

In recent years, the use of Light Emitting Diode (L.E.D.) bulbs has expanded rapidly. As an entirely different way of creating light from electricity, LED's first appeared in electronics and commercial applications.

LED bulbs can last an astonishing 80,000 hours and when they begin to wear out they do not "pop" like incandescent bulbs but instead just begin to dim, often lasting another 80,000 before failure. Only 10% of electricity put into regular bulbs results in light. 70% of LED electricity ends up in visible light.

LED's use far less electricity and because use is growing in many ways, prices are finally falling to acceptable levels for everyday household use. These bulbs are also safer because they do not use a heated filament to make light.

Even the very expensive LED Christmas lights of years past are now affordable. That trend of falling prices has now caught up to LED's that can now be used to replace incandescent bulbs.

These new bulbs are affordable and very long lasting. Some are even programmable allowing software and smart phones to control on/off and even dimming. LED's suffer less from the constant on/off problem. Unlike fluorescent bulbs, LED's contain no harmful substances.

While seemingly more expensive, LED's use far less electricity and, in short order, pay for themselves after which the benefits can continue for years.

LED's for Vacation Rentals

This means housekeepers no longer need to check bulbs on every visit. High ceiling lights require far less trips up the ladder. Guests appreciate a light similar to incandescent and owners appreciate having all lights work all the time.

If you have not replaced your old bulbs with LED's, do it today. You'll find it more efficient to pay the price and replace all lights at once then trying to piecemeal them as the old bulbs fail.

Author: Ron Lee – Volunteer, Vacation Rental Association
Blog #: 0466 – 12/22/15

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