We spent over 20 hours researching and testing 12 different types of flood light bulbs and found that performance, brightness, and cost were the most important factors that consumers looked at when shopping for flood light bulbs. The Sunco Lighting LED Flood Light Bulbscored high above the rest in all categories and is our overall top pick. The UL certified, dimmable flood lights are energy star listed meaning that they take less energy to run than other flood light bulbs. Each flood light bulb provides up to 25,000 hours of light with no mercury and less maintenance than other light bulbs.
Flood Light Bulb Buying Guide
There are several things to think about before you begin shopping. We have listed these considerations below so you will know exactly what you need.
Location and Size
The first thing you need to do before you purchase a flood light bulb is determine where you will be putting it or which existing bulbs you are going to replace. Think about what the light needs to cover and what existing fixtures you have.
Once you know where you will be putting the new flood light bulbs think about the size light you need and what will fit in the space you are installing it. Also think about the angle and height the flood light is installed. How it is installed can make a difference in the illumination you get.
Consider Your Neighbors
One of the quickest ways to cause problems with your neighbors is to shine a bright floodlight into their living room, bedroom, or even into their backyard. Make sure that the fixture you are installing your floodlight bulb into does not disturb your neighbors. If you are mindful of the people who live next door to you, they will appreciate your consideration. Also make sure the light is not super bright. Security lights don’t need to be super bright to be effective. You don’t want it dim but it doesn’t need to be seen from space either. Even if this means you won’t be able to put the light where you originally wanted to, it is much better to keep the peace with your neighbors and find another suitable place for your flood light.
There are many different brightness levels that you can choose from when it comes to flood light bulbs. The brightness outputs that flood lights come in have more variety than any other light bulbs. Once you stop shopping around, you can expect to find flood lights that range from 700 to 20,000 lumens.
What will determine the level of brightness you need depends on how large the space is that you will be lighting up. If you want to install a flood light on your patio or driveway, a flood light bulb with 700-1500 lumens should be enough. We have listed some of the most common places to put a flood light below with the average lumens that typically work well for each area.
- Small patio – 500 lumens
- Driveway – 1500 lumens
- Small garden – 1600 lumens
- Medium-sized garden – 2400 lumens
- Commercial use – 9000-20,000 lumens
Don’t forget that one of the big factors in how well lit the area is depends on the angle of the light and where you put it. If you have to place the flood light somewhere you’re not overly happy with, increasing the brightness can compensate for the light not being where you wanted it.
Types of Fixtures that use Flood Light Bulbs
There are a few types of lights that regularly use flood light bulbs. We’ve listed the most common types below.
Motion Sensor Lights – Motion sensor lights are excellent for deterring burglars and other people who do not belong on your property. They come on when the sensor detects motion and stays active for a specific amount of time before automatically turning off. They are the perfect lights for driveways; back porches, front porches, and anywhere else on your property that you want to add some extra light.
Duck-to-Dawn – If you are looking for flood light bulbs for a fixture that adds more security to your home, you may like dusk-to-dawn floodlights. These lights are designed to come on when the sun goes down and then shut off on their own when the sun comes up each morning. This is another type of light that you will need to ensure does not disturb your neighbors since it will be on all night long.
Different Types of Flood Light Bulbs
There are many different outdoor flood light bulbs available. Each one comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. We’ve listed each type below. Take a look at each one of them and see which one or ones will work best for your lighting needs.
Halogen – Halogen bulbs have a higher intensity than other bulbs that have the same wattage. They produce a steady, strong ray of white light and have a longer lifespan than other types of bulbs; as much as 2,000 hours per bulb. Halogen flood light bulbs cost more and have a disadvantage of getting super-hot when they are on. Halogen flood light bulbs should not be within reach of pets or children.
HID (High Intensity Discharge) – High intensity discharge flood light bulbs have the longest lifespan of all the bulbs and are one of the most energy efficient options you can choose. The efficient light beam that these bulbs produce will not need frequent replacing, unlike some of the other bulbs. One of the disadvantages to HID flood light bulbs is that they take several minutes to warm up once they are turned on.
Incandescent – There are many different shapes, sizes, and intensities of incandescent flood light bulbs available to choose from. The wattage is what determines the brightness level of incandescent lights so if you are lighting up a large area you will need to make sure you get flood light bulbs with a high wattage. Incandescent flood light bulbs are one of the least expensive of all the bulb types but their lifespan is much shorter and they are not very energy efficient either.
Fluorescent – One of the drawbacks to using fluorescent bulbs is that they are made with argon vapor and mercury so they can be environmentally hazardous and have to be disposed of in a certain way as well. Another disadvantage of these bulbs is their cost which is a lot higher than incandescent bulbs. They are more energy efficient and can last as much as 10 times longer than other bulbs. They ARE cheaper than HID or halogen bulbs.
LED – LED flood light bulbs are one of the best investments you can make. Not only are they super energy efficient they last a lot longer than other types of flood light bulbs. Some LEDs can last as long as 40 plus years if they are only used 3 hours per day or less. LEDs produce instant bright light once you flip the switch.
Sodium Vapor – This type of flood light bulb is more energy efficient than halogen bulbs and are less expensive to purchase and maintain. They do take a little longer to get to full brightness so they are not good for motion sensor light fixtures or places where instant light in necessary. They put off a yellowish tone so they are not good choices for bathrooms either.
The type of flood light bulb you choose is mostly up to personal preference and what needs you have. The three top rated flood light bulbs we have reviewed above for you are excellent choices for a variety of applications. They are quality made, energy efficient, and affordable as well.
In our buying guide you have learned about the types of flood light bulbs there are available as well as the different advantages and disadvantages of each type so you can see which ones are the best fit for what you are looking for.
Having the right flood light bulb for your fixtures can lower you power bills, reduce the hassles of having to replace burnt out bulbs all the time, and provide an extra layer of security that can make you and your family feel much safer.
Use the information you have learned in this buying guide to eliminate the flood light bulbs that will not work for you and make a confident choice on one that will meet all your needs.