Incandescant at 2018 EU Halogen bulb ban

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Light Bulb No. 1

Remember Incandescent light bulbs? Now you can’t buy them (except on eBay) and have to purchase more expensive halogen bulbs. Now the EU are going to ban halogen bulbs too in favour of even more expensive LED bulbs.

I’m sure the EU has some good points like being able to trade with our European neighbours without too much red tape (so long as you forget bits like VAT MOSS), but honestly it’s time they laid off our light bulbs.

The trouble is it’s not just the bulbs that have to be replaced, the newer greener (or at least we were told they were greener) halogen bulbs simply don’t throw out as much light as a good old incandescent bulb. I’m sure there are tests that say they do, but trust me the ceiling light in my front room is depressingly rubbish no matter what brand of halogen bulb I try in comparison to three old style incandescent bulbs.

I’m also a bit disheartened about the 10 year life we were promised for the energy efficient bulbs currently foisted upon us. They don’t last ten years, in fact in my house the blow on a very regular basis. They’re also still pretty rubbish at providing instant light and whilst some are good, other brands take a while to get up to full beam.

So if you’re going down the LED route what’s it going to cost you? Currently today on eBay you can still buy the old style . Go for current . Now check out the cost for a similar LED bulb and the cost is £5.99 PER BULB! It’s going to cost you for a 10 light bulb house, a lot more if you’ve already installed a ton of recessed halogen bulbs in your kitchens and bathrooms.

Thankfully manufacturers of light bulbs have lobbied the EU (probably wanting to recoup their investment in halogen bulbs after retooling from incandescent, before they retool again for LED), however the ban is still due to hit the UK in 2018.

If you’re a lighting retailer what would you suggest Tamebay readers purchase for their homes and businesses? Do you still have ample stocks of incandescent bulbs, should they jump straight to LEDs or are Halogens worth buying until they’re banned?

Creative Commons License photo credit: Caveman Chuck Coker

7 Responses

  1. From experience the halogen bulbs last a lot less time than the traditional bulbs they replace.

    Special use lamps such as those with reflectors or for use in specialist fittings are exempt as are “rough service bulbs” so there are some loopholes (the most piss-taking one being reclassifying the bulbs as heaters with some light output).

  2. Hi – I stumbled upon your article which is a little weak to say the least. LightRabbit is a leading LED lighting supplier in the UK and we put a massive emphasis on educating consumers on the benefits of using LED bulbs – Just Google LED Lighting Advice and you will see we are No.1. We are aware that there are poor quality lamps on the market and I would recommend to anyone that eBay (and even Amazon for that matter) are not suitable places to obtain quality lighting.

    We were disappointed to hear of the extension on the halogen lighting ban and understand that some of the major lighting brands lobbied to get this extended due to tooling up costs. The fact is, one can buy a pretty decent GU10 LED for under £4. We have a 4w lamp from as low as £3.59 inc VAT at

    The return on investment can be as low as 3 months but why not try out our energy saving calculator at which is pretty good and can even build in inflation costs. I think you will be surprised.

  3. Sales pitch aside, LED are significantly cheaper in the long run. They use about 1/10th of the energy of a halogen for example and therefore pay for themselves very quickly depending on how much you use your lights.

    Admire the EU for pushing us to be better.


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