Choosing lighting can sometimes seem a little daunting. With so much jargon and so many terms, it's not so simple to get your head around.

That's why we at Netlighting have compiled a list of useful information which you may require when choosing a fitting to fit your space, taking the hassle away permanently!

Proper lighting can enhance task performance and aesthetics, so it really is worth getting it right!



Incandescent are traditional style bulbs available in various sizes and voltages, with an average life of 1000 hours.

The following types come under this category: BC, B15, B22, ES, E14, E27, SBC and SES.

These do not require transformers and can also be purchased very cheaply. In cold weather, the heat shed by incandescent lamps contributes to building heat, however in hot climates lamp losses increase the energy used by air conditioning systems.


Halogen bulbs give off attractive light similar to sunlight and are twice as efficient as incandescent bulbs in both their energy consumption and life span.

They come as 12V low voltage (Capsule, MR16) and mains voltage (G9, GU10, GZ10, Linear). 

Halogens tend to emit a lot of heat so they can only be used in fittings designed to take the temperature.


Compact Fluorescents (CFL) are a type of fluorescent lamp, ideal for lights that will be left on for long periods of time, as they are low energy.

Many compact fluorescents are designed to replace an incandescent lamp and can fit into most existing light fixtures formerly using incandescents.

These have a longer life span and use less power than the incandescent bulb for the same amount of light.

Compact fluorescents radiate a softer white light than that emitted by incandescent bulbs. Due to their mercury content, they require proper disposal. 

Compact Fluorescents come as ES or BC (formerly GLS) and are available with built in ballasts. 

Other fluorescent lamps include 2D (GR8 16W and GR10q 28/38W) and PL lamps (G24d-1, G24d-2, G24d-3, G24q-1, G24q-2) available in 10-26W, which require special fittings with built in ballasts and the fixed wattage cannot be changed.


LED lamps (Light Emitting Diodes) have been advocated as the very best environmental lighting method. Although the initial cost is higher than compact fluorescents, the significantly higher life span of LED bulbs make them far more cost effective in the long run. Due to the nature of the light output of individual LEDs being small, compared to incandescent and compact fluorescent lamps, multiple diodes are used together. These are available in a number of single colours as well as multiple colour-changing known as RGB LEDs or multi-coloured white LEDs. Unlike compact fluorescents, LED lamps do not contain mercury.


Energy Efficiency: 

Otherwise known as low energy. Using energy saving bulbs will give you lower electricity bills, for the same time usage, than standard bulbs.  Fittings showing as dedicated low energy are designed to be used with low energy bulbs only.  Energy Saving indicates that the fitting is compatible for use with a low energy bulb. 

Low Voltage:  

Low voltage lights require the use of a transformer either fitted in the light fitting or remotely.  The safer voltage and consequently lower power allow for the production of a wider variety of designs.

Mains Voltage:  

Mains voltage lights do not require a transformer.