When purchasing any kind of light bulbs, you are more than likely to come across the term “Lumen rating”. A bulb’s Lumen rating refers directly to the number of Lumens that it produces. A Lumen is a unit of luminous flux, which measures the power of light perceived by the human eye.
Lumens have come into everyday use, mainly as a result of the government’s desire to phase out incandescent light bulbs in favour of more energy efficient lighting, such as LED light bulbs or compact fluorescents. As these new types of bulbs become more prominent on the market, it becomes vitally important to base buying decisions on output in lumens, rather than energy consumption in watts.
We often think of a light bulb’s brightness in terms of watts, however this can be misleading.
Watts measure the amount of electrical power that a light bulb consumes, but do not directly indicate the brightness of a bulb. Brightness is in fact measured in lumens.
There is no direct correlation between Lumens and Watts, as the number of lumens per watt varies drastically between different styles of light bulbs. A higher lumen per watt ratio is better as it means you are generating more light for each watt consumed. Energy efficient lighting such as LED light bulbs tend to have the highest lumens per watt ratio.
Lumens are the most effective way of measuring brightness, and should be viewed as one of the most important components when comparing the specifications of different light bulbs.