Latest EU lightbulb ban delayed by two years

lightbulbGood news for anyone still trying to read a newspaper indoors after dark, the latest phase of EU meddling with your light fittings has been delayed, with some halogen light bulbs getting a stay of execution for two years after the European Commission (EC) delayed the phasing-out of halogen bulbs until 2018.

The original ban,which doesn’t affect all halogen bulbs, mainly  those that look like the last lot of bulbs the EU banned, was supposed to come into force next year, but concerns have been raised about the availability, cost and quality of LED light bulbs, the most common alternative to the halogen bulb.

Note that the new 2018 ban on halogen bulbs doesn't apply to all halogen bulbs, just to be totally confusing. It mainly covers pear-shaped bulbs that look how a lightbulb is supposed to look, but the ban doesn't apply to the teeny spotlights or to halogen lamps used in desk lamps and flood lights. Look at this handy pictorial guide from Which!!!


Of course, it’s not that the EU actively want you to sit in the gloom in your house, despite the previous banning of incandescent bulbs, no, halogens bulbs are considered highly inefficient compared with LED or CFL energy-saving lamps. To put it into perspective, halogen light bulbs tend to be classified as D or lower for energy efficiency and use about 10% less energy than the old, banned, lovely incandescent bulbs. LED light bulbs, on the other hand use up to 90% less energy. This is, of course, good for the environment and bound to be good for your pocket too. Thanks EU.

According to a 2014 survey by Which!!!, virtually half of Which!!! members still have halogen bulbs in their home and over 43% have halogen spotlights. Which!!! also calculated that replacing six 50W halogen or incandescent light bulbs with six equivalent LEDs could save up to £32 a year. Unfortunately, however, you might need a few years to realise your lightbulb investment as Which!!! also confessed that some LED bulbs cost up to £40 each…


  • JonB
    "some LED bulbs cost up to £40 each" That may be true, but you'd be a chump to pay that much. We moved over to LEDs 2 years ago - even replacing our GU10 spots in the kitchen with them. They actually cost less than the price of replacing the halogens all the time (they last a LOT longer - 25000 hours vs 2000 hours) and are just as bright. Search online for the best price and bulk replace all your bulbs. You won't regret it. On a side note: The local sports centre replaced their floodlights in the sports hall with LEDs a year ago and they are much brighter and not so harsh as the halogens they had been using.
  • Albi
    I'm still buying incandescent 'rough service' bulbs off eBay through the loophole.
  • Gas M.
    Wouldn't a 40 quid bulb be one of those multi colour bulbs operated by a remote. Can we assume Asia and the US are doing their bit too force consumers to upgrade as well, otherwise this seems a little pointless.
  • Chris
    I got a friend to replace the 50W spots in their new kitchen with LED ones. Fair up-front cost, but will save them a fortune. I still have one of those Halogen bulbs in a touch-light. I've tried replacing it, even with a dimmable LED & it very much doesn't like it.

What do you think?

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