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    LED lighting options for your inground pool

    August 18, 2012

    led pool lighting

    A pool in the daytime is pretty to look at; refreshing to swim in. At night, however, a well-lit night time pool has a unique aura, atmosphere - ambiance. Pool lighting is also installed for safety - to allow swimmers and lifeguards to safely see the bottom of the pool.

    Once upon a time, all pool lighting was white. Indeed, most older pools are probably using regular incandescent light fixtures. R-40 bulbs, similar to flood lamps, drawing 300 or 500 watts of electricity. Manufacturers soon created snap-on colored light colors, and colored lenses for pool lights to add some color (but not much) to these incandescent bulbs.

    Soon after came lights like the Pentair SAM light, which uses a rotating "color wheel" of many colors, over two powerful halogen bulbs. It can be compared to the colored gels and filters used in theaters. The use of halogen pool lights, known for their intense, crisp light, became more popular during the 90's. Halogen bulbs lasted longer than incandescent pool bulbs, while reducing the wattage required down to 100 or even 50 watts. These new lamps were made to retrofit into existing light niches, or the "bucket" in the wall of your pool.

    Fiber Optic lighting around pools also had their heyday, powered by a light box with cool names like the Photon Generator. Fiber Optics are primarily used in pools as accent lighting, just under the tile, for a slick Miami look. Fiber optic lighting can still be purchased, but their appeal is waning, and the light output can be low.

    Nowadays, we are the future, and the future for pool lighting is L.E.D. lighting. You see these light emitting diodes at use in automotive lighting, traffic lights and also as accent lighting around the home. It was only a matter of time before LED lighting came to light up our swimming pools. The advantages of LED pool lights are numerous.

    LED Pool Lights have:

    led pool lights

    • Very low energy consumption
    • Very long LED bulb lifespan
    • Rich, deep and bright colors
    • Programmable light shows
    • Very low maintenance

    With energy consumption on a lot of people's minds these days, the eco-friendly pool will always have LED pool lights installed. LED lighting for pools can use 85% less electricity than regular pool lights. They run cool, and have no moving parts, like color wheel type lights. They are very low maintenance as well. Whereas regular R-40 bulbs are rated for 1000 hours of use, modern pool LED bulbs last way longer than halogen, metal halide, or incandescent bulbs – up to 50,000 hours!

    Pentair Intellibrite 5G White LED Pool Lights

    Pentair Intellibrite led white pool lights

    For those pools that prefer or are required to have white light, the 5G LED pool light from Pentair produces some of the brightest LED pool light illuminations available. Saves up to 86% of electrical usage, compared to standard pool light bulbs. To see how much the Intellibrite LED pool light can save you - try out the Pentair LED Savings Calculator.

    IntelliBrite Inground Pool Lights lenses can be rotated 180 degrees to provide a wide beam pattern (standard) or a narrow beam pattern. Intellibrite 5G LED lamps will fit all Pentair light niches and are available in 120V & 12V versions, 300W & 500W, each with a 50 ft. cord. The 500W version actually consumes only 70 watts, and the 300W lamp consumes just 45 watts.

    The Pentair Intellibrite bulb uses 32 individual, oversized LEDs, and if one of them were to fail, the others will keep lighting. For commercial pools that need white light, but want to lower their energy bill, the 5G Intellibrite is an intelligent decision.

    Hayward ColorLogic LED Pool Light

    Hayward Color Logi 4.0 LED pool light

    Hayward pool lights are as popular as Pentair, and the Color Logic LED lamp is their most advanced pool light to date. The 4.0 provides 5 more light shows and bonus features over the predecessor Color Logic lights. Microprocessor controlled, so you can sync up several lights to display the same color, at the same time.

    White is one of the colors, in case you wanted to illuminate in a traditional manner. The ColorLogic LED pool light has seven color-changing programs or "shows" and five stationary colors. If you hook up to the Hayward Pro Logic control, you can get  four more color shows and over a hundred color tones.

    Hayward Color Logic lights were designed to save electricity, and can save up to 80% on energy costs. The Hayward Color Logic uses 28 LEDs that consume around 95 watts for the 500W version.

    J & J Electronics Color Splash 3G LED Pool Bulbs

    Color Splash 3G pool bulbThere is another option! Instead of replacing the entire lamp, you can add the color, fun and energy savings of LED pool lighting by simply changing out the bulb in your existing pool light. Now in their 3rd generation, with over 72 LEDs, consuming only 45 watts of energy.

    Color Splash bulbs retrofit into a variety of common pool light housings by Hayward and Pentair. Simply screw the LED bulb into the light housing and tighten up the lens to the lamp body (replacing the light gasket is recommended). To find out if your particular pool light will accept the wide-body Color Splash bulb, give us a call.

    Available for spa lights and pool lights in 12V and 120V applications, the Color Splash LED bulb will display 5 different light shows, 7 solid colors and multiple blends. There is a Pure White bulb also available, for those commercial pools that are required to use white lighting.

    Other LED Pool Lights

    GLI floating ChillLites - LED lights for aboveground pools

    ChillLites by GLI are portable, indoor/outdoor lamps that glow softly with internal LED lights. Use them to decorate your pool, patio or indoor spaces. Powered by rechargeable battery, ChillLites look great floating in the pool, or sitting on the deck. Available in 4 different shapes, KoKoon style shown - and also available in cube and round shapes or as the small magnetic Loon style.

    Each light features color-changing lens (red, blue, green and white plus a vibrant color show that automatically fades from one color to another). Chill Lites are UV and water resistant.

    floating pool lights

    The Floating LED pool light is powered by a rechargeable battery that gives 12 hours of soft lighting. Float it in your pool, or set it on a table, take it camping, the Floating LED pool light is useful in so many ways.

    Easy to use, just charge it up and turn it on. Holds it's charge for several weeks on standby. Rugged design withstands cannonballs and rough waters in the pool.  

    LED pool lighting is here to stay. When you need to replace your pool light, or if you want to just add some vibrancy to your pool after dark, look to LED pool lights. You may never change a light bulb again! If you operated your LED light bulb for 12 hours per day, 7 days a week - it could last 12 years! Saves money, saves maintenance and provides deep, rich color that incandescent bulbs or lens covers just can't duplicate. If you have questions about LED pool lighting, give us a call, our pool light experts are here to help!  

    Bob Arnold
    SPP Pool Expert

    Blog Author
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