Can An Integrated LED Light Bulb Be Replaced?

Can An Integrated LED Light Bulb Be Replaced

LED light bulbs are super eco-friendly, and are known for being excellent for just about every lighting fixture. Smart bulbs can change color and dim. Regular ones don’t burn hot the way that regular incandescent bulbs do. But, what about light bulbs that are already integrated into a fixture? Once they’re burned, what can you do?

You cannot replace integrated LED light bulbs because they are built into the circuitry. The LED light bulbs are part of the light fixture for the integrated bulb fixtures so they can’t be replaced. Bulbs on an integrated LED light fixtures connect via wires at the end instead of a screw and you can’t remove them.

There are plenty of people who advise those who want to work with long-term quality to avoid integrated LED bulbs. This is especially true if you’re dealing with built-in fixtures that may be used in and around your home. Before you settle on integrated lights, read this article to get a better understanding of the situation.

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What Are Integrated LED Light Bulbs?

With traditional light bulbs, you can remove a bulb and replace it with another that has a similar screw. They are meant to be easy to replace, and are made with fixtures that are expected to work for years. This is the way it’s been for ages, but now, there’s a newer model people are using.

Fixtures with integrated LED lights will come right off the factory line with their LEDs added to the fixture. In a very literal sense, they’re integrated as part of the basic structure of the light fixture you’re dealing with. Most of them will be connected right down to the circuit boards. They’re not meant to be replaced.

Why Can’t You Replace Integrated LED Light Bulbs?

Integrated LEDs don’t have a screw at the bottom of their bulb. Rather, they’re wired directly into their fixture. This means that you won’t be able to unscrew or replace the lights without actually going into the circuitry. Technically, if you have the gear and skill, you could. But you really shouldn’t. It will most likely wreck your fixture.

Are Integrated LEDs Common?

Yes, kind of. Traditional LED light bulbs still make the lion’s share of the market, but integrated LED fixtures are now increasingly popular. This trend is expected to continue in upcoming years as manufacturers try to limit the amount of waste that comes from lighting. To a point, they’ve become a new type of status symbol.

Why Do People Want Integrated LED Light Fixtures?

Good question! It does seem a little strange that people would be okay with getting integrated LED bulbs if you can’t replace them, right? What’s more, they’re becoming even more popular despite being more expensive. So, what’s the deal? Are they worth it? Here’s the truth about benefits of the trend:

  • Longer LED Lifespan. Integrated units can last as long as 20 years without needing replacement. Regular bulbs may need replacement every year or two.
  • Convenient. You only have to pick up one fixture to get it to work. There’s no other equipment to buy, and you don’t have to worry about matching up bulb size and type.
  • Innovative Designs. Many integrated LED fixtures have gained attention for their unique, modern, and innovative design. If you love a modern vibe in your house, this is a good route to go.
  • Safer. They don’t overheat, they are not prone to sudden failure, and they also tend to be more energy-efficient than their “retro” counterparts.
  • Compact. Do you have a low ceiling? If so, integrated LED fixtures will help you get the most out of your ceiling space—possibly without the need to go for ceiling lights.

When Should You Avoid Integrated LED Lights?

Obviously, not everyone is going to want to get integrated LEDs. This is especially true if you want to have more control over what your lights do. Since you can’t choose the light types, the light hue you’re stuck with is going to be there for the lifespan of the fixture. If you were hoping to install Hue bulbs or something, you’re out of luck.

Moreover, people tend to disagree with the “planned obsolescence” that happens with integrated LED lighting. Having traditional LED light bulbs that are replaceable gives you the potential to keep your fixtures longer and also allows you to choose when you want to switch out your lights.

People also tend to keep budgets in mind when they decide to go the traditional route. If you are looking for a cheaper upfront cost, expect to stick with traditional lighting. With that said, many people note that traditional lighting still remains cheaper overall.

LED Lighting Costs: What To Know

If you are wondering what you should expect when it comes to price, it’s pretty clear that traditional LED lighting is going to be the one you want. Traditional LED lights (with bulbs) tend to run between $25 to $75 per track fixture, making them a reasonably-priced way to outfit your home. 

The average cost for an integrated LED light fixture is going to be far higher. On average, integrated LED track lighting will run between $110 to a whopping $350 per fixture. This means that you can expect your integrated lights to be between four to five times as expensive as a regular lighting fixture.

How Much Does It Cost To Replace An Integrated LED Light Fixture?

Installing them alone can cost a pretty penny. If you choose to replace your integrated LEDs, then you will pay the same price for the equipment, plus an hour of technician work for a pair. Since an hour of electrician work tends to run between $50 to $100 per hour, you can expect a pair of integrated LED tracks to run you between $260 and $800. 

This alone makes integrated LEDs prohibitively expensive for most homeowners on a budget. Don’t worry, though. Many individual lights can be bought and installed at a cheaper price, especially when it comes to lamps. Even so, you may want to wait until this trend gets a little more affordable before you dive in.

How Long Will Integrated LED Lights Last?

Your integrated LED lights will last around 25,000 to 30,000 hours. This means if you left your lights on for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, your LED lights will last about 1,041 days to 1,250 days. Or around 3 to 3 1/2 years. However, this all varies. For instance, you won’t want to leave your lights on all the time as tihs can risk burnout quicker.

Also, something to keep in mind is that the power supply also needs to function as well. So, while the lights may not burn out or fade out, the power supply can. However, you can always buy a new power supply without needing to replace the LED lights.

Does This Mean That You Can Keep LED Lights On All Night Long?

It’s important to note that this doesn’t mean you can just keep your LED lights on all night long without issues. While they’re ideal to have on for long periods of time because they don’t use much power and have low heat output, they can still fail. Therefore, you shouldn’t keep them on for longer than two days at a time tops without turning them off for at least 12 hours so they can rest.

Will My Lights Catch On Fire?

The cool thing about LED lights is that they don’t have a high heat output which means they are not hot to the touch. Therefore, if something was setting against them , or dust collected onto them, it doesn’t run the risk of fire. However, you still will want to maintain your lights and clean them once in a while regardless.

This is not to say fire can’t happen if you have faulty wiring. So when you install your integrated LED lights, it’s important to hire an electrician to make sure the electric work is up to par.

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Our Final Take

If you’ve been mulling over the idea of getting integrated LED track lighting, you probably have been fielding concerns about your ability to switch out your lights. Honestly, you’re right to be worried about this, especially if you want to control the color of the lights you’re getting. People who insist on being able to change out their bulbs should avoid integrated LEDs, simply because they don’t allow for it.

LED lights that are integrated into their fixtures cannot be replaced. Rather, you have to throw away (or recycle) the entire fixture to be used. However, you won’t have to worry about changing bulbs, they are safer, they’re easy to install, and they also tend to be brighter. So, there’s a trade-off that you’re getting.

Between the very high pricing of integrated LED lighting and the fact that you can’t always control the lights, we strongly encourage people to think twice about this trend. Chances are that you could probably save some serious cash by just waiting until this technology gets better…not to mention more customizable.

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Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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