So what’s the difference between the two? The answer depends on the specific lighting product that is being compared. For the sake of keeping the article brief and to focus on the product this question is most often asked about, we will outline the difference between residential grade and commercial grade screw-in LED light bulbs.
There are many types of LED screw-in light bulbs, but they all have the same manufacturing process. What differs between residential and commercial grade products are the components that go into the light bulb. LED bulbs consist of the following: Housing and Heat Sink, LED Chip, Driver and a Lens.
Although the completed process looks similar from brand to brand, each one of these components vary. The most significant parts are the LED Chip and the driver. As you can see from the driver picture, there are a lot of smaller components that go into making that which vary in quality. Also, there are hundreds of LED chip manufacturers to choose from. With choice comes quality differences again. The same applies to the Housing and Lens. In summary, it’s what’s inside the light bulb that counts.In addition there are significant warranty differences between commercial grade and residential grade product. Often times residential grade product labels their product as if it will last up to 20+ years, but when you look at the fine print the warranty states otherwise.
You can see the warranty is on this item is 3 years and based on an average of 3 hours per day. That means they are stating that this product is warrantied for 3,285 hours, but the package says it will last for 20 years? With a commercial grade product you will see a warranty like this: This item is rated for 5 years regardless of hours of operation. If the light stays on for 24 hours per day 7 days per week for 5 years that would be 43,680 hours. The package doesn’t state anything about the life being some outlandish number of years, but rather it is covered for 5 years. That is peace of mind and important to consider when you look a the upfront cost.
Yes you can always purchase a less expensive LED bulb but make sure that you understand what you are paying for.