Lights of America LED light bulbs from Walmart

September 8th, 2011 by dontai


Lights of America LED bulbs 2025LEDE12-65k claim 40 watt bulb equivalent and 30,000 hr life. Real world says 25 watts equivalent and maybe 1,000 hrs. Do not buy this junk.

Lights of America LED bulbs 2025LEDE12-65k claim 40 watt bulb equivalent and 30,000 hr life. Real world says 25 watts equivalent and maybe 1,000 hrs. Do not buy this junk.[/caption]

Browsing through Walmart here in Toronto, Canada, I stumbled upon some LED light bulbs on sale. From a company named “Lights of America”, they have a smaller base for use in a chandelier. Regularly $5.50CAD, they were going for $2.00CAD. Labeled “Made in China”, I hesitated. I could buy them, research them, and if necessary, return them if I was not happy. The results of research were that these LED light bulbs are junk and should be returned. They not only do not live up to brightness claims, but also only last a max of 1,000 of their claimed 30,000 hours of use.

My experience is that light bulbs made in China do not last long, especially the compact florescent ones. LED is a new technology, giving off no heat and is safe to dispose. They also last much longer than CFs. These comparisons, however, assume the bulbs are properly made.

It did not take a long search on Google, after fishing through all the web sites that sell these bulbs, to find some very negative reviews. Intriguingly, the company “Lights of America” was being charged by the US Federal Trade Commission, for fraudulent claims. Their claim that their 1.5 watt bulbs are as bright as a 40 watt incandescent is in dispute. Light output is closer to a 25 watt bulb than 40. More critically, their supposed bulb life of 30,000 hours has been tested to yield an actual figure of no more than 1,000 hours.

In the FTC’s original complaint against Lights of America, Inc. and its two principals, filed in September 2010, the agency charged that since 2008, Lights of America has overstated the light output and life expectancy of its LED bulbs. The agency also charged that Lights of America misled consumers about how the brightness of its LED bulbs compares to traditional incandescent lights.

At the court’s direction, the FTC’s amended complaint details where and when the challenged claims were made, and alleges that specific testing contradicts many of the defendants’ claims. For example, defendants claimed that certain bulbs lasted 30,000 hours, but U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) testing found that they lost as much as 90 percent of their output after only 1,000 hours. The amended complaint also alleges additional facts to show that the individual defendants controlled the company and knew, or should have known, about the practices the FTC is challenging.

Here is the original FTC charge:

The FTC alleges that in many instances, Lights of America’s LED bulbs produced significantly less light, as measured in lumens, than the company claimed in its promotional materials. For example, one bulb was promoted as producing 90 lumens of light output, but Lights of America’s own tests showed it produced only 43 lumens.

Also, in many cases, Lights of America deceptively compared the brightness of its LED light bulbs with incandescent bulbs, the FTC alleges. For example, the firm claimed that one of its LED lantern bulbs could replace a 40-watt incandescent bulb. However, while the typical 40-watt incandescent bulb produces about 400 lumens, the Lights of America LED bulb produced only 74 lumens.

Moreover, the FTC complaint states that in many instances, Lights of America’s LED bulbs would not last as long as the company’s promotional materials said they would. In one case, for example, the firm said that one of its LED recessed bulbs would last 30,000 hours. Independent tests, however, showed that the bulb would not last as long as claimed because it lost 80 percent of its light output after only 1,000 hours.

While I find the use of LEDs very compelling, it is difficult to justify the price of $2.00CAD for the bulb. LEDs are in general expensive to buy, and therefore LED bulbs reflect this. These LED light bulbs use 20 LEDs, which means each LED costs about $0.10CAD each. This is by far much cheaper than buying good quality LEDs individually.

Overwhelmingly the reviews of Light of America LED bulbs is terrible. Junk. The nerds at CandlePowerForums support their junk claim with some meaningful numbers. I do trust that they know what they are doing. PhysicsForums says much the same. Several people have received recall notices from Costco offering refunds. Walmart will only refund bulbs that are not already burned out. The two year warranty from LoA requires you to pay for postage back to California, which is more expensive than the actual bulb. The LoA warranty is bogus.

The Lights of America web site does not even mention these chandelier lights, even though they are sold throughout the US and Canada. The packaging also does not mention lumen ratings. It is all very sneaky and I do not want any part of it. Their web site also makes no mention of their legal troubles with the Federal Trade Commission. Nor is there any resolution or steps taken to help customers.

I am very disappointed in the 40 w equiv. 1.5 Watt LED bulbs I got from Walmart. They put out very little light. More like a 15 watt standard bulb. No where NEAR a 40 watt like they claim.

First off, they last about a month before going out. Walmart was ok about taking those back since I kept the packing and receipt but the ones that failed after 95 days they wouldn’t accept even though the package says if the bulb fails within 2 years take it back to the retailer OR send it back to lights of america. Well, Walmart says the packing can say that but it doesn’t fall within their return policy so they won’t take them back. If you try to get lights of America to replace them the will charge you in shipping the amount of a new bulb so is that really under warranty if they are ripping you like that? After buying 8 bulbs, 7 are already out. 2 of those failed after only an hours use or less (turning on the light about 3 to 4 times at most). I know LED will be the way to go in the future but right now, they don’t put out enough light and don’t last very long due to the manufacturing process. Lights of America should be ashamed. They really have a gimmick going with their 2 year return policy. It is far cheaper and better on the environment using standard bulbs until they get this technology down a little better. Bulbs that last a few clicks of the light switch fill up a land fill faster than the 100 year old bulb technology that last 2 or 3 years

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Given all the terrible reviews of dim light and short bulb life I think the best thing is to return them and get GE CFs. In the future LED technology will improve and prices will go down. Today you simply buy LED junk.

One Response to “Lights of America LED light bulbs from Walmart”

  1. Mario Says:

    There is still room to improve unfortunately this company is not the best example.
    Like you I also believe that < !a href="http://www.vialedlights.com" rel="nofollow">LED Lighting < !/a> will be the future in lighting products.

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