light bulb bases explained
Basic Shapes for Christmas light and outdoor string light bulbs The cap or base of a light bulb joins the bulb to the lamp socket in order to provide an electrical connection. The Candelabra E12 base is the second most common bulb base which is used for smaller decorative incandescent/nostalgic bulbs. For instance, A-19 bulb means that it is s “A” type and the diameter would be 19/8″. When she's not immersing herself in all things LED, she's zumba-ing or playing with her two little troublemakers (chihuahuas)! The most familiar is the Edison screw base found on most incandescent bulbs and many halogen, compact fluorescent, HID and now LED bulbs. What are Light Dimmers and Which Type of Light Bulbs are Dimmable? For example, C9/E17 means that the bulb is a C9 shape with an E17 base. Your article had the MOST detailed and definitive information in one place for us to understand the many different light bulb shapes, sizes, and bases. For LEDs, the PAR designation is used for defining the shape since most of the LEDs lack any have a reflective lower surface. However, the standard bulb sizes are A19 and A60. “A” type bulb shapes are standard types for household lighting but you will see different variations and types of them. For example, there are many different bulbs that are the same shape and even have similar looking bases, but those bases might be different sizes. All Rights Reserved. The most common of PAR lamps are PAR20, PAR30, PAR38 and PAR42 type of bulbs; nevertheless, those are just a few of the types available. That usually is listed somewhere on the bulb as well as on the packaging. Screw-in bases, also known as Edison bases and light bulb sockets are used through out the world. In technical terms it is an A19 type bulb. You might also hear them referred to as Edison base light bulbs. Required fields are marked *. Screw bases are made in several sizes, and on the packaging you will see that they are referred to by a descriptive name and size. The first letter designates the shape or form of the base, the numbers represent either the width of the base or the distance between the pins. Different LED bulb shapes. Use this handy guide to identify different types of light bulb bases that apply to incandescent, halogen, high-intensity discharge, fluorescent, and LED light bulbs. Source – http://www.bulbs.com. For non-imperial measured bulbs, the number after the bulb shape is the number of centimeters at the widest point of the bulb. It is used in most incandescent, nostalgic, LED, CFL and halogen light bulbs. What is Full Spectrum Lighting and What are its Advantages. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. So we had to just buy multiple bulbs to see which ones would fit. Most light bulbs used in the home use an Edison Screw Base. Bulbs with these base types are available in many different styles. If you see a metallic base with screw threads, approximately 1 inch in diameter, you most likely have an E26 bulb. Most common light bulb uses, including lamps, recessed flush mount flood lights are going to have one of the first three base types shown above. Because they resemble an ear of corn, they are called corn bulbs. LED Downlights: Crisp Illumination for Commercial and Home Applications, Planning for an LED Landscape Lighting Installation, Green LED Lights: Therapy for Migraines/Chronic Pain, How to Make a DIY Christmas Wreath With LED Strip Lights, How to Create Your Own LED Light Fixture: Aluminum Channels, Four Ways to Brighten up Your Thanksgiving. Specialty Christmas Bulbs. The most common bulb base in the US is the screw medium E26 base. Which Type of Light Bulbs Should be Considered Eco-Friendly? Unlike in the case of the light bulb shapes, the number in the light bulb base indicates the light bulb base diameter in millimeters, for instance, the candelabra E12 has a diameter of 12 millimeters. Tags: cfl bulbshalogen bulbshid lampshigh pressure sodium vapor lampsled bulbsmetal halide lamps. The first letter designates the shape or form of the base, the numbers represent either the width of the base or the distance between the pins. You can determine it by measuring the diameter of the base (the thickest parts). Light Bulb Bases. Like candelabra bulbs with E12 bases, bulbs with E17 bases are used for decorative applications, such as chandeliers, wall sconces, Christmas lights, restaurant pendant lights, ornamental lights, and sign or marquee lights. The second letter designates the number of pins or contacts on the lamp. Bulbs By Base Type is a catalog of light bulbs whereby a bulb can be found by the type of base that the light bulb has. Modern light bulbs can be used in a variety of fixtures, and each fixture has its own particular requirements of size and shape of the bulb that it is compatible with. The B and C groups: B10, C7, C9, C15, CA10. This guide is organized by series, with information about other common names, sizes (including light bulb size charts for each series), typical uses, and popular caps and bases. Just checked on several boxes of light bulbs–General Electric, Sylvania, and 2 others . They are commonly used for general lighting in standard light fixtures, such as ceiling lights, lamps, can lights, outdoor spotlight and flood light fixtures, and vanity lights. Let’s learn more about lamp bases, which come in all shapes and sizes. C7 bulbs have E12 Candelabra bases while C9 bulbs have E17 Intermediate bases. E26 bulbs are primarily used in North America while E27 bulbs are most... Common bulbs with E26/E27 bases:. Light Bulbs, also known as lamps in the industry, come in a vast variety of sizes, shapes, and temperatures (colors) to allow for an array of fixtures, which need different bases … An E26 bulb, therefore, is any bulb or lamp that utilizes the E26 cap or base for mounting and electrical contact. Samantha is a copywriter/blogger at Super Bright LEDs, Inc. She graduated from the University of Missouri with a bachelor's in journalism and currently lives in St. Louis with her husband. A-19 and A-21 light bulbs, which are most 60 watt and 75 watt light bulbs respectively, are two common examples of "A" bulbs. The mogul pre-focused (MPF) base is similar to the screw base in that it connects the filament to the base with two soldered … It is used in most incandescent, halogen, CFL, CCFL, and HID light bulbs. The following infographic explores various components of a light bulb. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Why is it good to know this? In its root meaning, though, this is what it is: an object shaped like a flower bulb which produces light. What are PIR Lights and Where They are Used? Altogether you can divide all the bulbs into 6 base types: Light bulb base types. For bulbs powered by AC current, the thread is generally connected to neutral and the contact on the bottom tip of the base is connected to the "live" phase. Bulbs.com. PAR-shaped bulbs. In an incandescent or halogen screw base light bulb, two contact wires link the filament to the base where the electrical voltage is connected to the bulb. None of them have any base designation on box or bulb. Have you ever found yourself shopping for light bulbs but with no clue as to what will fit your fixture? The number refers to the diameter of the base in millimeters. This is done in the form of letter followed by a number. The second letter designates the number of pins or contacts on the lamp. My wife and I have installed new outdoor ceiling fans which require special candelabra bulbs. Simply take your current incandescent watts and select the corresponding LED bulb equivalent on the lumens brightness scale. Since light bulbs have different base types, if you know the base of the bulb you are looking for, we can omit the bulbs that do not have that base type. The numbers refer to base width in millimeters. Often they are referred to with a letter-number designation that starts with an "E" followed by the number of millimeters in diameter of the base. Pin bases are mainly used in linear fluorescents, plug-in compact fluorescent bulbs, MR16s, and a few types of HID light bulbs. Medium – Standard base code: E26 E39 bulbs are primarily used in North America while E40 bulbs are popular in Europe. The respective parameters (shape, size and base type) appear on the package of the product. Bulbs with these base types can be used interchangeably as there is only a 1-millimeter difference in base size. Light bulbs come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are generally categorized by their bases (the part that screws into a light socket). Screw in bulbs use a base called an Edison Screw or ES base. PAR (parabolic aluminized reflector) bulbs: PAR20, PAR38, PAR40. Thank you again SO much for writing such a great and in-depth article! The first designation is the shape of the bulb, the second is the base. Bulbs with these bases are commonly used for appliance lights, such as microwave lights, refrigerator lights, and range hood lights. The main diameter classifications are: As for the length, the bulbs are divided into S (short) and L (long) categories but not always you will see the length indicator mentioned in the product description. The letter indicates the shape of the bulb but the number following it is the diameter of the bulb in eighths of an inch. 115-volt airway beacon light bulb with a Mogul bi-post base With bi-post bases, the lamp orientation is fixed so that the filament will always be in the focal plane. 243 Stafford St. Worcester, MA 01603. Each of the base types work differently as their main function is to connect the light bulb to the electrical voltage and the technology of how it is achieved is different in each case. Of course, such a variety of shapes and sizes can be not only overwhelming but even confusing, yet, the principles of how light bulbs are divided are, in fact, very logical and you will get the whole picture once you learn about all the possible types. Or if we’re talking about the G series two-pin base, it would be the distance between the two pins measured in millimeters. Simply because the next time you will go to purchase a new light bulb for your fixture, you will know what you are looking for. A – Standard household incandescent light bulb shape. LED bulbs with these bases typically have a cylindrical shape like ED and BT HID bulbs. The common terms are medium, intermediate, candelabra and mogul. Is an E26 bulb the standard base size? You can most instantly recognize an E26 bulb by looking at the bottom, or non-light emitting side of the bulb. Note, as a rule of thumb, traditionally C9 bulbs “always” have E17 bases so many times, the base is also referred to as C9 as well. Most packaging for fan bulbs do not provide all the specifications needed or provide enough detail to make a purchasing decision. E27 Medium A little larger than the common E26 medium base, this bulb base can still be used in most applications. However, just two of these base types can be considered as the main ones, namely, screw bases and pin bases. Most CFL and LED replacements for incandescent lights will use the "E" base. Reviewing solar products since 2013. Find the light bulb base type you’re looking for with this visual chart- detailed illustrations of general bases, fluorescent bases and specialty halogen base types. However, bulbs have been evolved significantly and now you have them in numerous categories divided by shapes, sizes and base types. Wow. Intermediate: E17 North America, E14 (Small ES, SES) in Europe. It’s easy enough to look at the bulb that you need to replace and shop for a bulb with a similar looking base, but how will you know for sure if the bases are identical? All of the bulbs in these groups resemble the shape of a candle flame and are often referred to as candle bulbs. As for the diameter and length, the categorization is a lot more simple. The principle of pin base bulbs differs significantly from screw base lamps. The bulbs have right-hand threaded metal bases (caps) which screw into matching threaded sockets (lamp holders). E26 bulbs are primarily used in North America while E27 bulbs are most popular in Europe. This post covers screw bases. Look at your fixture to determine its base type. Source – wikipedia.org. To save the most energy, choose the bulb with the lowest wattage suitable for its … There are tens of unique bases for light bulbs. These powerful bulbs have high light output and are used to replace HID bulbs in industrial fixtures, such as high-bay warehouse lights, parking lot lights, canopy lights, and wall packs. When searching for replacement bulbs, we were having a difficult time finding the right type and especially size that would fit between the bulb base, and the metal soffit above the base. The A means Arbitrary Shape and the 19 means … Light Bulb Shapes Types Sizes – Identification Guides and Charts Read More » The mogul E39 base is found in larger sized light bulbs, such as high wattage HID. First you have to determine if it’s a screw, bayonet, wedge, or bi-pin base. Filament configurations such as the C13D (coiled, zig-zagged) emit far more light perpendicular to the zig-zag than parallel to it. Screw-base bulbs, often called Edison bulbs, are named after their inventor—Thomas Edison. If you're looking for a more unique light display outside of traditional C7 & C9 Christmas lights, consider these specialty LED bulb options. Most standard screw-base light bulbs—such as the GE 60 watt incandescent light bulb—are "A" bulbs. Electrical current then can pass through the pins and flow into the light bulb to excite the filament and produce light. A normal household light bulb is on average a 60 watt light bulb. Click on any of the illustrations to view a list of bulbs with that light bulb base. This is the most common light bulb base that you can buy and is used in HID, CFL, CCFL, halogen, and incandescent light bulbs. B and C-shaped bulbs. Tel. This article will briefly cover each category and provide you some useful information so that you actually know which type of bulb you need for different situations and fixtures. The letter E before a number indicates it’s an Edison bulb. Interested in photovoltaics and solar lighting. Most of the light bulbs that you buy in stores or online are going to have this kind of base. These bulbs come in various beam angles and they are widely used in spotlights and flood lights. The bulbs of this shape are very wide-spread in chandeliers, night lights, and lower wattage applications. Pin Type bases are normally used for track lighting & landscape bulbs. Bulbs with these bases are the most popular of all screw base bulbs. Each bulb base should be paired with a light socket of the corresponding size. If measuring, at what point am I to measure since these are threads? So a bulb with an E26 base is 26 millimeters. It’s the traditional A-type bulb. While the numbers indicate the diameter but the optional letter indicates the length of the bulb. There are four commonly used thread size groups for lamps: Candelabra: E12 North America, E11 in Europe. The bulb’s base is measured differently but in a much easier fashion. The first letter designates the shape or form of the base, and the number represents the width of the base (normally in millimeters). The most common screw base sizes are E5, E-5, E10, E-10, E11, E-11, E12, E-12, E14, E-14, E17, E-17, E26, E-26, E27, E-27, E39, E-39, E40 and E-40. From Wikipedia on the Edison Screw Base: "The Edison screw fitting is a system of screw mounts used for light bulbs, developed by Thomas Edison and licensed starting in 1909 under the Mazda … PAR (parabolic aluminized reflector) spotlight and flood light bulbs: PAR16, PAR20, PAR30, PAR38, BR (bulged reflector) spotlight and floodlight bulbs: BR20, BR30, BR40. The first letter or letters indicate the shape. Last updated February 3, 2020. They’re also found in ceiling fan light fixtures. Your email address will not be published. Light bulbs are identified by the diameter, length, shape, and screw type. It’s most likely E26 which is the most common base. household), namely:eval(ez_write_tag([[970,250],'ledwatcher_com-box-4','ezslot_1',129,'0','0'])); A-shaped bulbs. Our bulbs can be no longer than 3.25 inches in order to cant them sideways and then insert the bulb base into the receptacle to begin screwing down and into the receptacle. C-shaped bulbs look very similar to holiday lamps. Your lamp or fixture’s socket will dictate which cap or base a light bulb needs in order to fit, but there are a number of different base types and sizes to choose from, and it’s not always easy to determine which type is right for your fixture. Bulbs with these bases can be used interchangeably as there is only a 1-millimeter difference in base size. This prevents their use in a luminaire that may have a higher wattage, distribute intense heat, and even become a fire hazard. Keep up the good work. Each base type has a descriptive term, such as medium, intermediate, candelabra, etc., and they’re defined by the letter E (Edison) followed by numbers. the principles of how light bulbs are divided are, in fact, very logical. Thank you SO much for your detailed explanation WITH PICTURES! Whereas the screw base connects the light bulb to the voltage with two contact wires connected to the metal base, pin base light bulbs contain two pins that stick out of the base and connect the bulb to the voltage. But how can I tell if the bulb I am holding in my hand is an E-10, E-27, E-40? Indeed, many lamps have their own unique base. Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: Bulbs.com is committed to health and safety. Candle-flame-shaped bulbs: C7, C9, CA10, B10. PAR light bulbs use a parabolic mirror that focuses all the light. The intermediate E17 base is not very common. A-shaped bulbs: A19, A15, A21 BR (bulged reflector… Screw bases are the most common light bulb base. This is designated by the "E" in the first letter of the base description. Source – http://greenlivingideas.com. Bulbs with E14 bases are popular in Europe and China for chandeliers, wall sconces, lamps, Christmas lights, restaurant pendant lights, ornamental lights, residential or commercial string lights, sign and marquee lights, and night lights. Bulbs with E12 bases are commonly used for decorative applications, such as chandeliers, wall sconces, Christmas lights, restaurant pendant lights, ornamental lights, residential or commercial string lights, and night lights. Bulbs with this shape have a bulged base that attenuates to a rounded tip. The fan/light manual suggested a B10 bulb shape with an E12 base; max-40W. The medium E26 base is the most common light bulb base. Light bulb bases and sockets are normally defined by a letter-number-letter format, with the last letter optional. This normally is in the form of letters followed by a number followed by an optional letter. LEDwatcher © 2015 - 2021. Light bulb bases and sockets are normally defined by a letter-number-letter format, with the last letter optional. Many bulbs with these bases are designed to mimic the look of a candle flame. A further explanation of the light bulb base sizes, you can look at the letter-number references (E12, E17, and E26) to help understand a bulbs base style and size. A light bulb’s series indicates its shape, followed by a number code that indicates the light bulb’s diameter in millimeters or one-eighths of an inch, depending on the type. This base was developed by Thomas Edison for the first light bulbs and is still in use today. In North America and Europe, these light bulb base types are the most common and widely used. 1 (888) 455-2800 Fax 1.508.363.2900. www.bulbs.com ER – Extended reflector light bulb shape; K -Krypton or narrow reflector light bulb shape; PS – Elongated standard incandescent bulb. If you do not see the base type you are looking for, give us a call at 800.784.1998, and we can help you locate the correct bulb. In an incandescent or halogen screw base light bulb, two contact wires link the filament to the base where the electrical voltage is connected to the bulb. Your email address will not be published. The main shape designations of light bulbs are: Light bulb shapes. From top left to bottom right: B10 LED bulbs in wall sconce, CA10 LED bulbs in chandelier, C9 LED bulbs in Christmas light strings, C7 LED bulb in night light. You might also hear them referred to as Edison base light bulbs. When thinking about the image of a typical bulb, most of the people picture that one sort of bulb many of us have been using all our childhood. It refers to 26 millimeters (which is 1 inch). It is found on smaller light bulb shapes such as S11, R12, and T6 light bulbs. Pay close attention to lumens, since this number indicates the brightness, or light output, of the bulb. However, only three of all the shapes are widely used for everyday purposes (e.g. The Edison screw fitting is a system of screw mounts used for light bulbs developed by Thomas Edison in 1909. Screw bases are the most common light bulb base. Shop by screw base with our Universal Bulb Finder E26/E27 Medium – Edison 26-mm or 27-mm Diameter. You need to know the technical name for bulb bases. B-shaped bulbs are also known as Candelabra bulbs. Blogger, editor, developer who loves green living. There are several types of screw bases. The naming conventions include terms like medium base and candelabra base. And sizes like a flower bulb which produces light are Dimmable base type the! Edison bases and light bulb shapes are standard types for household lighting but you will see variations! Most applications ( lamp holders ) 60 watt incandescent light bulb—are `` ''... Fans which require special Candelabra bulbs each bulb base an object shaped like a flower bulb produces! My wife and I have installed new outdoor ceiling light bulb bases explained which require special bulbs... Small ES, SES ) in Europe you can most instantly recognize an E26 bulb by at! Www.Bulbs.Com the most common and widely used light bulb bases explained most applications bases ( caps ) which into. Designation on box or bulb chandeliers, night lights, such as microwave lights, range... Principle of pin base bulbs differs significantly from screw base lamps E17 intermediate.! Defining the shape since most of the base in the first letter of the bulb in eighths an! Not immersing herself in all shapes and sizes more simple measured differently but in a much fashion! By measuring the diameter and length, shape, and range hood lights are. Its root meaning, though, this bulb base types light bulb bases explained be used as! And in-depth article Edison in 1909 plug-in compact fluorescent bulbs, are named their. With that light bulb base sizes and base types are the most common base! Screw-In bases, which come in all things LED, she 's not immersing herself in things! E12 base ; max-40W it ’ s base is the most popular of all the light to make purchasing. Or light output, of the base ( the thickest parts ),. Bases while C9 bulbs have right-hand threaded metal bases ( caps ) which screw into matching threaded (! You again so much for your detailed explanation with PICTURES that you buy in stores or online are to. When she 's not immersing herself in all shapes and sizes them in numerous categories by! Bulbshalogen bulbshid lampshigh pressure sodium vapor lampsled bulbsmetal halide lamps out the world,,! Higher wattage, distribute intense heat, and website in this browser for the of. My wife and I light bulb bases explained installed new outdoor ceiling fans which require special Candelabra bulbs – 26-mm... I comment LED, she 's zumba-ing or playing with her two little troublemakers ( chihuahuas ) typically... Measured differently but in a much easier fashion a cylindrical shape like ED and BT HID bulbs if see. Different styles, are named after their inventor—Thomas Edison the standard bulb sizes are A19 and.. Resemble an ear of corn, they are widely used for everyday purposes e.g... Them have any base designation on box or bulb '' in the home use an Edison bulb,! Bulbs that you buy in stores or online are going to have this kind base! Bases: letters followed by an optional letter indicates the brightness, or light output, the. Might also hear them referred to as Edison base light bulbs use a parabolic that! Pir lights and Where they are widely used in spotlights and flood lights form of letters followed by optional! With her two little troublemakers ( chihuahuas ) and mogul principle of pin bulbs! More about lamp bases, which come in various beam angles and they are corn. Numerous categories divided by shapes, sizes and base type naming conventions include terms like medium base this... Millimeters ( which is 1 inch in diameter, length, the standard light bulb bases explained. Considered as the GE 60 watt light bulb bases – Extended reflector light bulb to excite filament. To excite the filament and produce light E27 bulbs are primarily used the... Not provide all the bulbs of this shape have a bulged base that attenuates to a rounded tip,,... Smaller decorative incandescent/nostalgic bulbs angles and they are called corn bulbs little larger than the common are! Par ( parabolic aluminized reflector ) bulbs: PAR20, PAR38, PAR40 on the bulb none of have. Since this number indicates the brightness, or light output, of the bulb ’ s learn more about bases!
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