The Best Light Bulbs for April 2019

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Light Bulbs

No matter how you choose to illuminate your home or office - striking floor lamps, simple pendant fixtures, functional desk lamps - you'll need light bulbs to get the job done. From basic room lighting to appliances like refrigerators and dryers, light bulbs can be found everywhere.

However, finding the right light bulbs at great prices can be challenging. Local big-box retailers may not carry the more specialized bulbs, especially LED bulbs, needed for some of today's modern appliances and fixtures. This forces shoppers to spend more time and money driving around town looking for the product they need.

LAMPS PLUS

No matter what kind of light bulb you need, you're likely to find it at Lamps Plus. At the time of our review, they had more than 700 different bulbs to choose from, in addition to their wide selection of lamps, ceiling fans, furniture, and more. Lamps Plus has many retail locations in the western half of the US, and an easy-to-navigate website that brings their best products and prices directly to your doorstep.

Lamps Plus makes it simple to find the exact light bulb you need. On the main page for light bulbs, you can choose from the following categories:

  • LED Bulbs
  • Standard Household
  • Edison Bulbs
  • Fluorescent Bulbs
  • Halogen Bulbs
  • Candle
  • Reflector (R)
  • Parabolic (PAR)
  • Mini-Reflector (MR)
  • Globe

You can further sort through your options according to usage, type, feature, brand, shape, wattage, color temperature, and more. We particularly like their "Easy Bulb Finder" that uses images and descriptions to help confused customers find the right replacement for any "mystery bulb" they may be trying to purchase. And, if you still need help or advice, Lamps Plus offers free consultations with their trained American Lighting Association experts through their toll-free number.

While we found their list prices were often higher than their competitors, Lamps Plus gives its customers an unparalleled Price Match Guarantee: if you find a lower price within 60 days of making your light bulb purchase, they will not only match that price but also refund you an extra 20% of the price difference. This makes them the absolute lowest-priced retailer in our review.

But, be aware that although the site does say "Free Shipping* on all light bulbs", the asterisk leads to the conditions for that free shipping: only valid for orders of more than $49. All other orders ship for a flat fee of $5, so it might be a good cost-saving strategy to stock up when ordering your light bulbs, to take advantage of the free shipping offer.

Lamps Plus' return policy stands out among other retailers in the industry: within 60 days of purchase, products can be returned with no restocking fees. This is twice as long as the majority of other online light bulb stores. And, if you live near a retail location, you can make your return there rather than mailing it to their customer service center.

Lamps Plus is equally impressive with their "Disclosure on Transparency in Supply Chains". They take a clear stand against ethical issues such as human trafficking, child labor, and health and safety issues - not just in their own facilities but also among their suppliers. We give them high marks for their commitment to having a healthy work environment for all of their employees and suppliers.

To top it off, Lamps Plus maintains an incredible 9.1/10 average across more than 8,000 reviews. Customers give this retailer compliments for their wonderful approach to customer service, super-fast shipping, and prices that can't be beat (particularly with the price match guarantee in place).

Lamps Plus earns five stars and our highest ranking among online retailers of light bulbs.

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LUMENS

Created in 2006, Lumens offers more than 700 light bulbs to choose from, in addition to a terrific selection of light fixtures, fans, furniture, and more. While their brand selection is somewhat small - we didn't see some of the better-known names in the industry like GE and Philips - they carry bulbs that meet every possible lighting need.

Lumens' website is helpful when trying to find the right bulb. On the main product page for Light Bulbs, you can shop by light source (incandescent, halogen, fluorescent, LED) or by type, and there are clear images for each kind of bulb to make it easy to recognize the kind you need. There's also a section where customers can learn more about light bulbs, with articles on differences in light bulb types, lumens vs. watts, and other useful topics.

And, Lumens protects your purchase with a low-price guarantee. If you find a lower price within 30 days of your order, they'll match it. Keep in mind that this guarantee takes into account any special offers and shipping costs to determine if the competitor truly has the lower price.

Depending on the size of your order, you may receive free shipping from Lumens. For orders of $50+, you'll get free ground shipping within the continental US. Smaller orders do incur shipping charges - $4.95 for orders under $25 and $10 for orders between $25 and $49.99 - so you might want to stock up on light bulbs when you place your order, to get the lower-priced shipping.

If you find that you need to return your light bulb purchase, Lumens is proud of their "easy returns" policy within 30 days of purchase. You do have to pay for the cost of the return shipping - Lumens provides you with a prepaid UPS shipping label and deducts the cost from the final amount of your return.

Lumens has an impressive rating average of 4.5/5 out of more than 1500 reviews. They place a great deal of emphasis on being available to you as a customer: you can reach them via email, live chat, or a toll-free number from 6am-6pm Pacific on weekdays and from 7am-5pm on Saturdays.

Lumens earns high marks because of their low-price guarantee, good selection of light bulbs, and strong emphasis on customer service.

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1 800 LIGHTING

If you like to shop at stores with both an online presence and brick-and-mortar retail stores, 1-800 Lighting should be one of your favorites for buying light bulbs. They have showrooms in Florida and New Jersey, in addition to a well-stocked online store, and have been in the business for almost 100 years as a division of Capitol Lighting.

On the main light bulb page, you'll find their products listed according to the following categories:

  • LED Light Bulbs
  • Incandescent Light Bulbs
  • Halogen Light Bulbs
  • Xenon Light Bulbs
  • Vintage Style Light Bulbs
  • CFL Lighting Bulbs
  • Novelty Light Bulbs (such as blacklight)
  • PAR Light Bulbs
  • Reflector Light Bulbs
  • Fluorescent Light Bulbs

Once you've chosen the specific type of bulb you need, you can further sort the results by wattage, shape, base, price, brand, and other features. We would have liked to see some sort of guide to help customers who don't already know what type of bulb they need - perhaps an illustration of what the different types of bulbs in that category can look like, for those times when you've got an appliance or light fixture that needs the bulb replaced but you have no idea where to begin looking for a new one. Fortunately, once you know what you need, you're sure to find something that fits in 1-800 Lighting's inventory of more than 2,000 bulbs - one of the largest selections in our review.

Like the other highly-rated retailers in our review, 1-800 Lighting offers a price match guarantee. If you find a lower advertised price within 10 days of your light bulb order, they will refund you 110% of the difference.

Shipping costs are also comparable to other retailers: free shipping on orders over $49. However, with a flat fee of $15 to ship orders under that amount, it might be wise to stock up on light bulbs when making your purchase, rather than paying such a high cost just for shipping. And, like other retailers, returns are accepted within 30 days of purchase.

If you have any questions regarding light bulbs, prior to placing your order or after it has been received, you can reach their customer service representatives via 1-800 Lighting's toll-free number or online chat for up to 10 hours a day. With an impressive 9.0/10 customer satisfaction rating according to Bizrate, low price guarantee and broad selection of light bulbs, 1-800 Lighting gets high marks.

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LIGHT BULBS

In business since 1951, LightBulbs lives up to its reputation as "the highest rated lighting retailer online" with more than 85,000 customer ratings. With more than 60,000 light bulbs in their inventory, they have the largest selection by far when looking at all of the retailers in our review.

You can see their broad range of products right away when visiting their website. From standard light bulbs to specialty products like projector bulbs and foliage lighting, you're practically guaranteed to find what you need at LightBulbs. Whether or not it will be the lowest available price when you find it is another question. Unlike other top-rated retailers of light bulbs, LightBulbs does not have a price match guarantee. Most of the products we looked at were priced competitively, but if you were to find what you needed at another retailer, there doesn't seem to be the possibility for getting the same price at LightBulbs.

Similarly, LightBulbs does not offer the same free shipping that most of their competitors provide. Shipping costs a flat $8.99 for all orders, where their competition tends to have free shipping for orders over a certain amount, usually around $50.

And, any returns sent to LightBulbs "may be assessed a restocking fee" of up to 20%, or 40% if the return was not authorized beforehand. Returns must be requested within 30 days of delivery. Defective products have to be reported within 5 days of receipt, and LightBulbs does replace them at no extra charge.

On a positive note, the reputation of their customer service is excellent. We found hundreds of reviews (if not more) from pleased shoppers who had received their items faster than promised, gotten credit for items that arrived damaged with no hassle, and who were impressed by LightBulbs' commitment to the maxim "the customer is always right".

In short, while LightBulbs may not have a price match guarantee or the lowest possible shipping, their selection ensures that they may be your retailer of choice for that hard-to-find specialty bulb, and their track record of great customer satisfaction means that the experience is likely to be a good one.

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WAYFAIR

Turn on your TV to any network station and you'll probably see a commercial for Wayfair, one of the country's largest names in home goods. From light bulbs to lamps and much, much more, they carry more than 500,000 items in their inventory.

The Wayfair website is easy to use to find the right light bulb. You can shop by bulb type, such as incandescent, metal halide, and CFL; wattage; application, such as household or landscaping; and several other categories. We particularly like the feature that allows you to sort the results according to items that are available with 1- or 2-day shipping, for those times when you need to get your bulbs replaced quickly.

Wayfair definitely wants to earn your loyalty as a customer, with a number of perks:

  • Free shipping on orders over $49 and a flat fee of $4.99 on all other orders (some competitors charge as much as $15 for shipping)
  • Two-day delivery on many products
  • 30-day return policy using their hassle-free, self-service return center
  • Automatic, complimentary rewards program that offers 3% back in rewards on every purchase
  • Free shopping advice from home experts via their toll-free number

Wayfair does have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, indicating that most reported issues have been resolved appropriately. On the other hand, we found more than a few reviews on the BBB listing as well as in other places that complained about issues with on-time, accurate delivery, product quality, and negative interactions with customer service representatives. While this may not be a huge issue with something as basic as a light bulb - as compared to larger items that require assembly, for instance - we encourage customers to be persistent with asking for a satisfactory response from Wayfair if there are any problems with an order.

Overall, Wayfair is a good place to shop for light bulbs, and we give them good marks for their low prices, customer-friendly perks, and wide selection.

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BULB CENTER

From light bulbs to LED fixtures and string lights, Bulb Center wants to be your one-stop-shop for your lighting needs.

With only seven brands in their inventory, Bulb Center comes up a bit short in terms of selection; however, they were one of only a small number of stores we surveyed that carry recognized brand names like GE and Philips. Also, the number of light bulbs within those brands that they carry - over 1,000 - is more than several other retailers.

The site is well-organized and easy to navigate. The main page allows you to sort bulbs by technology, such as incandescent and halogen, and shows several pictures to help you recognize the type of light bulb you need. Once you've selected the type of bulb, you can further narrow down the results according to a specific variety. For instance, when you select LED bulbs, you get another drop-down menu that includes fifteen subcategories, from Christmas lights and other decorative products to standard shape LED bulbs.

Bulb Center ships all orders over $49 for free, while charging a flat rate of $5.99 for all others. This is comparable with most of the reputable retailers of light bulbs in our review. Their return policy is also similar to their competitors: returns of unused items are accepted within 30 days of purchase and must be authorized prior to shipping to the company.

One feature we would have liked to see is a price match guarantee. Most of the top-rated retailers in our review do offer that advantage to their customers, and in a market where there isn't usually a big difference in pricing (compared with furniture or other large-ticket items), it would help Bulb Center compete more effectively with other stores.

However, Bulb Center already has an impressive average of 9.1/10 over 111 reviews on Trustpilot; customers frequently praise the speed of shipping, pleasant resolution of any issues with damaged or inaccurate orders, and are very satisfied with their light bulb purchase.

Bulb Center earns good marks for their wide selection of light bulbs and obvious attention to customer satisfaction; that rating would easily increase with a low-price guarantee that would match what many of their competitors already offer.

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CRESCENT ELECTRIC

Crescent Electric Supply Company (often abbreviated as "CESCO" throughout the website) has been in business since 1919 and is one of the nation's biggest distributors of electrical hardware and supplies. Their customer base consists primarily of contractors, original equipment manufacturers, and other commercial businesses throughout the US.

Crescent Electric has just under 3,500 light bulbs in their inventory, with more than half of those being from the GE Lighting line of products. The site is somewhat utilitarian, as you might expect from a business that primarily serves other businesses rather than your average home consumer, but it's easy to find what you need according to the type of bulb. You can also sort products according to manufacturer and price range. If you can't find what you are looking for, there's a Product Request Form link in the description below the "Bulbs & Lamps" heading.

CESCO comes up short, in our opinion, when it comes to shipping costs. While most other light bulb retailers offer free shipping for orders of $50, CESCO requires that your order reach a total of $250 to qualify for that same offer. All other orders ship for a flat fee of $8.99, also more expensive than many of their competitors.

Similarly, while the time frame for their returns policy - 60 days from the time of purchase - is more generous than most stores, they do charge a minimum restocking fee of 15%. These costs do add up, making it less likely that they can compete with the more highly-ranked stores we reviewed. And with no price match guarantee, you're likely to spend more money at CESCO if you're a typical private customer rather than a contractor or other business that makes larger purchases.

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Fortunately, online light bulb shopping makes it incredibly easy to find every possible type of light bulb and have them delivered directly to your residence or business with just a few clicks of the mouse. And, because most online retailers don't have the same overhead costs of brick-and-mortar stores, you can easily get lower prices for light bulbs than what you would at local retailers. It's a win-win for you, the customer!

When you shop online for light bulbs, there are several key points to consider as you compare one retailer to another. Some of these include:

  • Selection. For the bulbs you need, does the store carry multiple brands from which to choose? Do they sell specialty bulbs for appliances and other fixtures, or just the basic lamp and light fixture varieties?
  • Pricing. Does the store sell light bulbs for less money than you'd find at your local stores? Are they competitive with other online retailers? Also, will you have to pay more in shipping than the bulbs actually cost, or is shipping free?
  • Return Policy. If you get the wrong bulbs, or you are dissatisfied for some other reason, can you return them? Is there a fee for doing so?
  • Customer Service. Does the store have a good reputation for making customers happy?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Light Bulb Stores available today. We hope these reviews help you find the exact bulbs you need to light up your home or office space - at a great price!



Light Bulbs In The News

Xiaomi Mi LED Smart bulb launched in India alongside Redmi 7 and Redmi Y3; promises 11 years of life

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Published:  Wed, 24 Apr 2019 07:06:00 GMT



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Published:  Wed, 24 Apr 2019 07:03:00 GMT



Xiaomi launches Mi LED Smart Bulb in India via crowdfunding

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Published:  Wed, 24 Apr 2019 07:11:00 GMT



Mi Smart LED Bulb announced in India, will go on crowdfunding on April 26

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Published:  Wed, 24 Apr 2019 01:47:00 GMT



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Published:  Mon, 22 Apr 2019 12:12:00 GMT



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Published:  Tue, 23 Apr 2019 06:00:00 GMT



Town of Ulster bans disposal of compact fluorescent light bulbs at town transfer station

TOWN OF ULSTER, N.Y. - Town officials have issued a ban against the disposing of compact fluorescent light bulbs containing mercury at the town transfer station. The policy change was adopted during a ...

Published:  Mon, 22 Apr 2019 14:25:00 GMT



Council Bluffs man pleads guilty to stuffing light bulb into dog, receives $350 fine

Council Bluffs man pleads guilty to stuffing light bulb into dog, receives $350 fine Clifford Weldon Gustin, 72, pleaded guilty on Monday and was fined $350, plus court costs, for the offense. Check ...

Published:  Fri, 19 Apr 2019 13:22:00 GMT



Who really invented the light bulb?

American inventor Thomas Edison is credited with devising the first practical light bulb in 1879. However, the story of the incandescent light bulb is not that straightforward, as it involved multiple ...

Published:  Thu, 18 Apr 2019 13:14:00 GMT




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