6 Types of Halogen Light Bulbs Explained

installing a halogen light bulb
  • Beginner

Halogen light bulbs come in many different types, but there are a few light styles that are best served for specific functions.

1. Halogen Floodlights

The halogen floodlight comes in two different types: soft glass or heavy glass. The soft glass style looks just like the average incandescent light bulb and is labeled "R" or "BR." These soft glass halogen bulbs are for indoor use only.

The heavy glass type is labeled "PAR," which stands for "parabolic aluminized reflector." Unlike the soft glass types, this floodlight can be used indoors or outdoors, as it is able to stand up to severe weather, making it common to see in boats, decks, parks, and other outdoor areas. Additionally, it is the only halogen light bulb style covered with glass thick enough to stand up in inclement weather. It is available in different diameters, ranging from 1.75 inches to 4.75 inches. It is also available with different beam widths.

2. J Type Halogen Bulbs

This halogen light bulb is double-ended and is commonly used as security lighting. A common J type bulb base is a recessed single contact bulb (RSC) and is 3/8 inch. The J type bulb is available in different sizes and voltages. The volts vary from 12 to 277, and the lengths stretch from 78 millimeters to 254 millimeters. When handling these types of bulbs, never touch to bare skin. This is not because it will damage the skin, but rather because the oils from human skin can reduce the life of the bulb.

3. JC Type Halogen Bulbs

This halogen bulb is a low voltage bulb, commonly found under counters, in desk lamps, or as accent lighting. This type of bulb can be be purchased in various low voltage amounts, ranging from 6 to 28 volts. These bulbs come in capsule shape and have two pins at the base of them. There are two different sizes, a G4, which is 4 millimeters between the pins on the base, and a GY6.35, measuring 6.35 millimeters between the pins on the base. Just like the J type bulbs, a JC halogen shouldn't come in contact with bare skin since it can damage the bulb.

4. JCD Type Halogen Bulbs

These bulbs are commonly used in under-counter lighting, desk lamps, accent lighting, or pendant lighting. They are similar to the JC type in that they have pins on the end, but they differ by using line voltage from 120 to 130 volts. They come in three different sizes, a G6.35 (6.35 millimeters between the pins), a G8 (millimeters between the pins), and a G9 (9 millimeters between the pins). The G9 uses two loops on the base instead of pins. JCD type halogen bulbs come in frosted or clear glass. They should also be handled with gloves.

5. JDD Type Halogen Bulbs

These bulbs are used mainly in the foodservice industry and come in the standard base size. They have halogen filament that is enclosed in glass, and that is then surrounded again by an overall glass jacket.

6. JDR Type Halogen Bulbs

These small reflector floods are commonly used in range hoods or as track lighting. They come in clear or frosted glass finishes and can be purchased with or without a glass cover. They are either screw-in or with a GU10 base.