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Planning for the ban: Megaman launches guide to halt halogen ban confusion

September 2016 sees the start of the process to phase out inefficent and expensive halogen light sources across Europe. Luckily LED is ready and waiting to fill the gap left behind once the demise of halogen is complete.

There is much confusion across the lighting industry when it comes to the phasing out of halogen lamps, but Megaman has lauched this handy guide to help ease you into the new post-halogen world.

Having decided that high-energy filament lamps should be phased out in the member states of the European Union, the real problem was working out how such a huge task should be achieved. In 2008 the European Commission established four criteria that any low-energy replacement lamps would have to meet before any phase-out could be confirmed of filament lamps.

Affordability: they must be available at a reasonable price
Performance: they need to produce the same levels of illumination
Equivalence: they are physically similar to existing products
Compatibility: they are suitable as replacements for existing lighting fixtures

With some justification, given the state of low energy alternatives only a few years ago, the Commission chose to separate lamps into two basic types, directional and non-directional, and then sub-divided those two types into different lamp groups based on the calculated energy saving, using the A-E energy banding that we’re familiar with from the ratings of our white goods.

Whatever confusion may have been created when the phase-out timetable was first agreed in 2009, it was further exacerbated in 2015 by the decision to delay the phasing-out of some lamp types by another couple of years. Having agreed that a full ban would be in place by September 2016 for both non-directional and directional lamps, we now find ourselves in a situation when some, though not all, tungsten halogen lamps will be with us for a few more years.

*Excluding some specialist IRC MR16 halogen lamps.

If we look, year by year, we can see how the phasing-out of our inefficient lamps has worked:

Non-directional lamps (under Commission Registration (EC) No.244/2009):

2009:   the less efficient CFL and LED

2012: clear incandescent and low efficiency halogen (G9-type)

2016: but since extended to 2018

Low efficiency halogen (G4-type)

Halogen ‘energy saver’ lamps (inc. candle and classic)

Low efficiency halogen (R7s-type)

Remaining after 2018:

High efficiency halogen (some low wattage G4, G9 and high wattage R7s types where equivalent low energy lamps are not available)

Directional lamps (under Commission Registration (EC) No.1194/2012):

2013: The less efficient CFL and LED reflectors, Incandescent reflectors: PAR38, R50, R63, R80 and less efficient halogen reflectors

2014: Halogen reflectors: AR48 and AR70 and low efficiency AR111

2016: Halogen reflectors: high efficiency AR111, and all MR11, MR16, PAR16, PAR20, PAR30, PAR38, R50, R63, R80

While the loss of the 60W GLS tungsten lamp may have had its difficulties, the really challenging issue that we have from September 2016 is the final disappearance of the 50mm halogen reflectors, GU10 and standard MR16. These have been the singlemost popular halogen reflector lamps for many years and we wait to see how well the LED industry addresses that challenge.

Plan for the ban

These are the lamps that have become almost the default choice for both domestic and commercial users and confusion can be expected throughout the marketplace when it comes to replacing failed lamps. To assist in the transition, Megaman has created a micro-site that explains the changes and guides the visitor towards suitable replacement LED lamps for their purposes.

If you still do not feel clear on what the halogen ban means for you, then click here to take a look at Megaman’s guide on how to navigate the post halogen world.