LED bulbs have come a long way since their introduction—in style, in color tone, and most notably in price. Now more affordable than ever, LED bulbs not only save you money at the home improvement store, these low-voltage bulbs are soothing for your electric bill too. Plus, they can last for tens of thousands of hours, in some cases even decades, without being replaced.
And while when they first became available they were fairly limited, LED options have diversified—from those specializing in outdoor use, to those that offer warmer or even colored lights, to those that work with dimmers and smart home hubs.
With so many options to choose from now, we’ve tracked down the most reliable and highly-rated LED bulb companies.
Everywhere we look, Cree makes the top list for best overall LED replacement bulbs. Both the daylight and soft white versions rate highly for authentic color and superb dimmability. Reviewers find little flickering or buzzing—annoying traits in many bulbs. Plus, Cree offers a 10-year warranty, so if you keep track of where you put that paperwork, you can get free replacements if your bulbs burn out in less than a decade.
2. General Electric
General Electric has been in the electricity game from the very beginning, and it’s obvious they’ve kept up with the times with their LED options. These bulbs, called “C by GE” work well with your smart home hubs, which means you can put them on a timer or turn them on and off using remote tech, like an app on your phone. In addition to being stylistically smart, these bulbs offer superior light color for every application.
Philips continues to lead the pack in nearly every category of LED bulb, as evidenced by customer reviews and independent research results. Specifically, the A19 dimmable in both daylight and warm glow versions offers both reliable function and a low price tag. The Philips Hue Smart Bridge, a hub for your smart bulbs, has also earned high marks for function, style, and consistency. Pair it with the Philips Hue Smart bulbs for a long-lasting, earth-and-wallet-friendly system.
You may have never heard of this brand, but those who study the lighting industry have them under the spotlight, and are impressed with what they see. The Soraa Radiant bulb offers true color accuracy, which is important if you're a visual artist or collector, or you just want your strawberries to look red and your deep purple couch not to turn gray. The bulbs are a bit more expensive than some other options at about $13 each as of this writing, but that’s significantly cheaper than the cost of any average LED bulb that cost around $40 each less than ten years ago. If color quality is your main priority, Soraa delivers.
TCP is another company that may not come to the top of your mind, but they probably should. This company produces all different types of LED bulbs—street lights, traffic lights, home lamps and more. They are one of the best known and most famous of the Chinese brands, and gaining increasing recognition around the world. For most residential applications, the TCP 60-Watt Equivalent A19 LED bulbs are a solid choice. They're often recommended for reading lamps, under cabinet lighting, and other home uses.
6. Great Eagle
Great Eagle is another reliable brand. The compact A19 LED 100W bulb is UL listed and dimmable, making it efficient and economic. For those who are used to traditional incandescent bulbs for comparison, the Great Eagle 14-Watt LED replaces a 100W incandescent or halogen bulb, saving you 87% in energy use. Plus, this bulb offers an “instant on” feature, in contrast to many that take time to warm up to full capacity.
When choosing LED replacement bulbs, consider whether you need them to work with your smart home features and if you want them to change colors. Also think about the type of light you want, whether that be a reflection of daylight or the soft warmth of an amber glow. If you have a dimmable fixture, make sure to match it with a dimmable bulb. Also consider the cost of multi-packs, which are often a better value than a single bulb. Regardless of your needs, the brands above are trustworthy options to consider.