LED vs Halogen Pool Lights

Written By Timothy Te

15th June 2021

Pool lights are installed for two reasons: safety and aesthetics. Although safety has always been the primary purpose of pool lights, it’s only been recently that aesthetics have been moved to the front of the list since more people are now sitting and looking at their pool. As for safety, it goes without saying that better visibility while getting in and out of the pool contributes a lot to safety. Bright pool lights also make it easier to keep an eye out on anyone using the pool whether it’s on those warm summer nights or on those chilly winter swim sessions.

What are LED pool lights?

LED stands for Light Emitting Diode. In a nutshell, LED light uses a small microchip that converts energy into clean and bright light. In scientific terms, the diode emits photons through the principle of electroluminescence. Don’t let the big words scare you though, all it means is that the diode produces lights when electricity is run through it.

What are Halogen pool lights?

Halogen pool lights on the other hand are old school. Halogen pool lights are old school torches. They work by running power through a tungsten filament, the power/electricity evaporates the tips of the filaments and releases particles. The evaporated tungsten combines with halogen gas within the bulb to create a tungsten-halogen molecule which emits a hot and bright light. This is a very simple process requiring no complex microchips and diodes, but not all of the energy is utilised and is released as heat, which is terribly inefficient especially with rising electricity costs!

LED Pool Lights VS Halogen Pool Lights - Safety

When it comes to safety LED pool lights win hands down! Why? For one, LED pool lights use much less electricity than halogen pool lights! See, LED lights use only 7-20 watts per hour depending on the size while equivalent halogen pool lights can use up anywhere from 50-500 watts per hour. That’s a HUGE amount of electricity being drawn in and any accident involving wattage that high can be pretty bad.

LED pool lights also run cooler than halogen pool lights. In fact, halogen pool lights produce so much heat that it’s not recommended for them to be turned on when they’re not underwater because they need the pool water to dissipate the heat produced or else they’re going to burn out!

LED Pool Lights VS Halogen Pool Lights - Cost

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This is where the disparity with led pool lights and halogen pool lights is very apparent. Led pool lights can cost anywhere between five to ten times more expensive than halogen pool lights. Don’t let this scare you though. This is the only part where halogen pool lights win in cost though. For operating costs, halogen pool lights cost five times more than led pool lights to operate, which adds up over time. Anothing thing to consider is that there will be some people who won’t turn on their pool lights to save up on electricity bills so what’s the point of having lights if they’re not being used right?

With lower running costs, LED pool lights are an excellent aesthetic addition to any home pool in Australia. Being able to turn on the pool lights is a much bigger deal than many people realize!

LED Pool Lights VS Halogen Pool Lights - Longevity

Hands down, LED pool lights win the battle when we’re talking about longevity. Since halogen pool lights burn really hot, they’re more prone to burning out and needing replacement. In fact, constantly used halogen pool lights are usually replaced every season. While the bulbs themselves are cheap, it is worth noting that the expense will add up, and other parts like o-rings and receptacles will also need replacement due to constant changing. LED pool lights on the other hand are rated by the manufacturers to last anywhere from 15 to 20 years! When averaged over the lifespan, they actually cost LESS than halogen pool lights both in unit cost and operating costs!

LED Pool Lights VS Halogen Pool Lights - Aesthetic Appeal

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Halogen pool lights only come in one color (depending on the type of bulb you buy) and the only way to change color is to replace the bulb with a different temperature or add a special colored lens. LED pool lights on the other hand come in models that you can change colors with a click of a button! Being able to change the colors on your pool lights can set the mood, whatever it is! Whether you’re having a festive party or you just want a relaxing night by the poolside, having pool light colors that you can change with a click of a button is a plus in our win column.

Retrofitting LED pool lights

One issue that seems to stop a lot of people from getting LED pool lights is the worry that it’s hard to install. This has been taken into account by LED pool light manufacturers and a majority of led lights that are available on the market today can easily be retrofitted into almost any swimming pool! If not, then there are easy mounting kits that can allow you to mount your new lights in a few minutes!

We also have an article here which you can check out on how you can easily install LED pool lights in your pool in minutes!

Conclusion: LED Pool Lights win, hands down

If you take everything together, despite some shining moments by halogen pool lights, LED pool lights win hands down when it comes to aesthetic appeal, overall costs, and safety!

Do you have any questions about this topic or the featured products? No worries, we're here to help! Drop us a question down below and we'll get back to you ASAP.

Happy swimming :)

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Written By

Timothy Te

Pool Guru at Mr Pool Man

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