Typical Electric Lamp Wattage and Lumen Ratings:

Lamp efficiency figures from many sources side by side here for comparison.

Ordinary Light Bulbs
Halogen Lamps
Street Lighting Incandescent Lamps
Mercury Vapor Lamps
Sodium Vapor Lamps
Metal Halide Lamps  (6/4/98)

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(Lamp output varies with voltage and also allowable manufacturing tolerances so variation of plus or minus five percent is not unusual.)

There is nothing special or unusual about a "long life" incandescent lamp (filament lamp). A "long life" or "extended life" lamp is simply one designed for a higher voltage than the equivalent "standard life" lamp. The filament achieves a not quite so high temperature so it evaporates more slowly. The light is also a bit more towards the yellowish side in terms of color, and the lamp gives fewer lumens per watt of electricity consumed. Also, there is nothing special or unusual about a "photoflood" incandescent lamp. This lamp is designed for a lower voltage. When operated in a "normal" electrical circuit, it operates at a higher temperature to fulfill its purpose of producing more light from one or a smaller number of lamps and also produce light more towards a bluish tint. The inescapable consequence of this is a shorter lamp life, an expected lifetime of four hours is quite common.


Household "Standard" Incandescent Lamps:
(figures published on lamp cartons)

Clear lamps give the most light. Light output varies slightly with the method of frosting the inside of the bulb.
The lifetime shown below is the time after which half the lamps randomly chosen for longevity testing from a manufactured batch can be expected to have burned out after continuous operation.

watts lumens hours


  15    105   3000  
Philips
  15    109   2500  Sylvania soft white


  25    210   2500  Sylvania soft white
  25    235   3150  Philips


  35    375   1500  Sylvania energy saver
  35    375   4240  * "industrial grade unbranded"


  40    445   1500  Sylvania soft white
  40    490   1500  Philips
  40    490   1000  GE


  45    540   1200  Sylvania 45/95/140 3 way low beam


  50    575   1500  Philips 3 way low beam
  50    580   2400  Sylvania 50/100/150 3 way low beam
  50    580   1200  GE 3 way 50/100/150 low beam
  50    640   1200  
Sylvania 3 way 50/200/250 low beam


  53    640   2600  * GE Pro Line
  53    665   2830  * "industrial grade unbranded"
  53    715   1000  Sylvania energy saver 
  55    800   1000  GE "Miser"


  60    555   1000  Sylvania garage door or rough service
  60    635   3000  GE garage door or rough service / vibration
  60    800   2000  Sylvania long life
  60    840   1000  GE
  60    850   1000  ** GE Pro Line
  60    855   1000  
Philips
  60    870   1000  Sylvania soft white
  60    880   1000  "industrial grade unbranded"
  60    890   1000  Sylvania clear bulb 


  75   1080   1500  Sylvania double life
  75   1170    750  GE
  75   1180    750  Philips
  75   1180    750  Sylvania soft white 
  75   1200    750  "industrial grade unbranded"


  88   1300   2100  "industrial grade unbranded"
  89   1275   1950  * GE Pro Line
  90   1510    750  Sylvania energy saver


  95   1300         Sylvania 3 way 45/95/140 high beam


 100   1420         Sylvania 3 way 50/100/150 high beam
 100   1585   1500  Sylvania double life
 100   1625    750  Philips
 100   1640         + GE 3 way 50/100/150 high beam
 100   1680    750  ** GE Pro Line
 100   1710    750  Sylvania soft white 
 100   1720    750  GE
 100   1750    750  Sylvania clear bulb


 150   2650    750  GE
 150   2780    750  Sylvania
 150   2850    750  Philips


 200   3250         + Philips 3 way high beam
 200   3300        
Sylvania 3 way 50/20/250 high beam
 200   3675   1000  
 200   3850    750
 200   3930    750  
Sylvania clear bulb


 300   6300    750  Philips
watts lumens hours

All lamps rated 120 volts, operated at 120 volts unless noted:
* 130 volt rating, 120 volt "long life" usage
** 130 volt rating, 130 volt normal usage
+ Lifetime not quoted for high beam filament



Household Halogen Reflector Flood Incandescent
(figures published on lamp cartons and wrappers)

watts lumens hours
  40    410   4000   * Philips
  45    530   2000   ** Philips
  50    530   2000   Philips
  50    590   2000   GE
  60    880   2500   Philips
  75    940   2000   Philips
  90   1280   2000   Philips
 100   1400   2000   GE


All lamps rated 120 volts, operated at 120 volts unless noted:
* 130 volt rating, 120 volt "long life" usage
** 130 volt rating, in 130 volt normal usage


Street Lighting Incandescent Lamps, 120 volt multiple
(information courtesy Joe Maurath, collector of antique streetlights)
(The standard lifetime for street lighting incandescent lamps is 3000 hours compared with 750 hours for household lamps. To achieve this lifetime, the lamps produce fewer lumens per watt compared with most household lamps.)

   58  watts    600 lumens
   92          1000
  189          2500
  202          2500   (6000 hour)
  295          4000
  405          6000
  620         10000
  860         15000


(500 and 750 watt lamps are also used)

Street Lighting Incandescent, 6.6 amp. series
(information courtesy Joe Maurath)

79  watt (12 volt) 1000 lumen
165 watt (25 volt) 2500 lumen
231 watt (35 volt) 4000 lumen


Mercury Vapor: Lamps
(Excludes power consumed by the ballast)
(figures published on lamp cartons and wrappers and also on local utility outdoor lighting brochures)

watts   lumens  ANSI ballast
  50              H-46
 100   3500-4200  H-38
 125     6000
 175   7000-8500  H-39
 250    11000     H-37
 400    20000
1000    56000


Important notice regarding mercury, metal halide, and sodium lamps. If the glass bulb should be broken the lamp should be promptly removed. Otherwise it might continue to operate and emit harmful ultraviolet light that causes sunburn and damages eyesight.


High Pressure Sodium Vapor Lamps
(Excludes power consumed by the ballast)
(figures published on lamp cartons and wrappers and also on local utility brochures)

watts  lumens  ANSI ballast
  35    2250      S-76
  50    4000      S-68
  70    5800      S-62
 100    9500      S-54
 150   16000      S-55
 250   30000      S-50
 400   50000      S-51
1000  130000

Some sodium lamps must not be tilted while lit or within a half hour after being turned off. That is, if it is base down when operated, it must be kept base down until it has cooled down for a half hour. For this reason it is not recommended that it be removed from the socket or transported shortly after it is turned off.


Metal Halide Lamps (added 6/4/98)

These are similar to mercury vapor lamps but require different ballasts. Lumen ratings will be added later.

watts  lumens   ANSI ballast
  50               M110
  70               M98
 100               M90
 175               M57
 250               M58
 400               M59


All parts (c) Copyright 1997, 1998, Allan W.Jayne, Jr. unless otherwise noted or other origin stated.

Allan W. Jayne, Jr. -- P.O. Box 762, Nashua, NH  03061
603-889-1111 --  ajaynejr @aol.com
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