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Cree attracting customers with affordable LEDs

This spring, lighting manufacturer Cree released a quality LED at an affordable price. The bulbs go for between $9.97 and $12.97 and are much cheaper than other LEDs that cost anywhere from $15 to $50, according to the company.

One of the two indoor LED lighting bulbs by Cree uses 6 watts of electricity, however, it produces the same amount of light as a 40-watt incandescent bulb. The other bulb uses 9.5 watts and Cree said it replaced the 60-watt incandescent.

The lights turn on instantly and are dimmable. They also last about 25 times longer than traditional light bulbs and don't have mercury in them, unlike compact fluorescent lights. According to the source, the lighting manufacturer estimated that a household will spend about $1 a year to use the bulbs.

"What we saw in the consumer market was a market not moving fast enough – because there weren't any compelling offers out there," said David Elien, Cree's vice president for corporate marketing and development. "What we have tried to do is make an LED product that looks like an incandescent bulb and lights like one but has an 84 percent reduction in energy use, 22 years of useful life and a 10-year warranty."

The release by Cree is encouraging other lighting manufacturers to bring cheaper lights with just as much energy efficiency as more expensive LEDs to the market. Adoption of LEDs has increased in recent years due to technological advancements as well as changes to federal efficiency standards, The Plain Dealer reported.

Cree releases LED upgrade kit
Cree also announced a new upgrade kit to help consumers adopt LED lighting technology. The company said its new UR Series LED Upgrade Kit offers a less than two-year payback and makes the LED upgrade process more simple.

The 102 lumen-per-watt linear upgrade kit is used to replace fluorescent lights and helps to reduce energy use by more than 50 percent. An upgrade will provide better lighting, and because the bulbs last up to twice as long as fluorescent lights, consumers will spend less money on purchasing new lights.

Cree said the new kit is designed to fit into T8/T12 linear fluorescent fixtures and can be installed faster than retrofit tubes.

"Fluorescent technology has reached the end of its useful life," said Greg Merritt, vice president of lighting at Cree. "The UR Series is an ideal solution for applications where building owners prefer to retain existing lighting fixtures, including hospitals where retrofit construction can negatively impact the environment. Thanks to the design of the UR Series, our customers now have an LED option that is cost-effective and easy to install and use when retrofitting their existing linear fixtures."

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