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Can LED Lights Cause a Fire?

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Every year, light bulbs rank high as the top causes of fire. Yet, some people claim that LEDs give you better safety than any other light bulbs. If you’re planning to switch to LED bulbs, you should know everything related to the safety of LED lights. Can LED lights cause a fire as other light bulbs do?

Can LED Lights Cause a Fire? 

LED lights use a different way to produce light. Because of this, LED lights have a lesser chance to cause a fire than your traditional light bulb. They’re also less likely to overheat which is one of the main reasons light bulbs start a fire.  

Extremely heated LED light bulb in danger of causing fire

LED lights do not produce light from a vacuum as other traditional light bulbs. They use a solid semiconductor to produce light. LED lights save you a lot more in energy bills due to this method of producing light. 

Most light bulbs cause a fire because they’re overheated. With LED lights, you’re less likely to see it overheat. LED lights produce light at a lower temperature compared to other light bulbs. In fact, LED lights work better in colder temperatures

How LED can Cause a Fire

Although LEDs are less likely to cause a fire, that doesn’t mean they won’t. If you’re careless with maintenance and installation, your LED lights might end up catching fire accidentally. 

LED bulbs only heat up to around 30 to 40 degrees Celsius at the start of lighting. This makes LED bulbs less likely to catch fire simply through contact. So why would your LED bulbs cause a fire?

LED bulbs will likely cause a fire because of:

  • Faulty wiring
  • Enclosed fixtures
  • Using high wattage bulb that’s over the limit of your light fixture

That’s why you shouldn’t be reckless with your LEDs even though they’re less likely to cause a fire. 

How to Keep Your LED Lights Safe

Keeping your LED safe starts at the installation. LEDs require proper installation so you can make sure they’re safe for your home. 

LED bulbs use a driver that regulates the right amount of electricity to the components. The driver converts the main’s voltage to a lower amount that’s compatible with your LED bulbs. 

You can follow these safety guidelines for your LED lights:

Various LED light bulbs placed in a table
  • Follow the LED manufacturer’s manual and specifications. Use only their recommended and compatible parts. 
  • Some LED bulbs come in pre-installed drivers. Read the manufacturer’s specifications to properly install them. 
  • Do not block the heat dissipation system of your light fixtures. You should watch out for enclosed fixtures. If you want to install LED bulbs in enclosed fixtures, use LED bulbs that are “enclosed fixture rated”. 
  • Your electric parts, including your LED bulb, should be UL listed or ETL listed. You will be assured that your lighting meets the testing safety standards. 

Why LED Lights Are Safer?

It’s no question that LED lights provide you a better lighting alternative than other light bulbs. Additionally, there are several factors that make LED lights much safer than your traditional light bulbs. After seeing these, it’s no wonder so many people are slowly switching to LED bulbs

Low-Temperature Lightning

Traditional light bulbs such as incandescent and halogen easily get hot. If by chance, you installed them incorrectly or got a defective bulb, this will likely overheat and cause a fire. Especially, if it touches a surface like a lampshade or a curtain. 

LED bulbs produce light at a much lower temperature. They also don’t like heat as it affects the way they produce light. LED bulbs would likely shine brighter in the winter where it’s cold than in summer. 

LED bulbs don’t have any problems with the temperature that’s why you won’t likely see an overheated LED bulb. However, you also won’t likely ever get to use them in hot environments such as microwaves, ovens, cooking ranges, etc.

Heat Sink Technology

While LED bulbs produce heat, they don’t do it at the same level of more traditional light bulbs. LED bulbs manage heat differently. Instead of releasing the heat outward, LED bulbs hold the heat internally.

LEDs use a component called a heat sink found at the base of the LED bulb. The heat sink functions to draw most of the heat away from the electronic components.

Less Power Consumption

LEDs use less electricity compared to other light bulbs. They also produce more lumens using less power than other light bulbs. That’s why LED bulbs will save you a lot in energy bill.

Unlit light bulbs encircling a lighted LED light bulb

Why is this relevant? Because if LED Lights use less electricity, they’re less likely to overheat. When it comes to fire safety, You should go for LED bulbs because of the low amount of electricity flowing through them. 

Lighting Placement

As long as you don’t place LED bulbs in a hot environment, they can function practically anywhere. To stay safe, avoid putting your LED bulbs near flammable objects. Even though LED bulbs produce less heat, you shouldn’t be reckless. 

Related Questions

Before we finish this article, we want to address a couple of related questions about LED Lights and fire hazards.

Can LED Strip Lights Cause a Fire?

If you use a low grade LED strip lights, then they are more likely to cause a fire. Low grade LED strip lights can get very hot because of their poor build quality. Placing them near a highly flammable material would be extremely dangerous. 

LED strip lights can also fail due to poor voltage and current control. The surge of too much electric current can cause the LED strip lights to overheat and start a fire.  

Can I Leave LED Lights on All Night?

LED lights can stay on all night and even for long periods of time. LED bulbs use less power and produce less heat that makes them great for long days or hours of usage. LED bulbs makes a perfect night light or background accent light. 

How Long Can LED Strip Lights Stay On?

You can get around six years of continuous usage from a high quality LED strip lights. LED strip lights typically last for 50,000 hours. 

After that, the LED strip lights gradually lose their light output, decreasing up to 70% of their original light output. 

Conclusion

LED lights can cause a fire but not as likely as traditional light bulbs do. Make sure the LED lights you use are of high quality. It also comes down to proper installation and maintenance. Regularly checking your electronics will lessen its chance to cause a fire.