If you've ever looked at the lighting in many retail stores, you might see
one of the most important light bulbs to come out in the last twenty years, the
MR16 halogen. This lamp is a fine example of halogen light technology with
very precise beam control. Sometimes people say they look like little
satellite dishes and there are some similarities to that shape. The MR16
was developed as a 12 volt lamp for use in low voltage lighting systems.
It's almost impossible to get the same quality of halogen light effect from any
other kind of lamp. It has a unique illumination effect and the light
control is great. Like all halogen capsule bulbs, they are filled with a special gas that actually rebuilds the filament and
provides longer average lifespan than normal incandescent bulbs. Halogens come in
different shapes and sizes for various different uses. Some common halogen types
are PAR, JC, Double Ended, MR11, and A-Line or MB. The MR16 is the one
that has a 2 inch reflector with a silvered (dichroic) coated which is usually
faceted. Halogen bulbs burn about 10 percent brighter, whiter, a hotter
than normal incandescent bulbs. Extra heat is typically not a benefit, but
whiter, bright light is something that is useful in a large number of lighting
applications. This is especially useful in retail showrooms, where color is
important to make merchandise look its best.
Halogen light bulbs should not be touched with your skin in any way. If they
are touched, the life span of the bulb will be greatly reduced. In case you ever
do touch a halogen light bulb, wipe it thoroughly with a soft cloth. Bulbs that
are covered, like the PAR and some of the MR16 halogen light bulbs, are okay to
touch, since you are not touching the actual bulb but a heavy, thick glass that
covers the light bulb. Most commonly, they are put into an enclosure, but
be aware of touching a halogen capsule itself directly, is not a good idea.
The MR16 lamp is low voltage in most cases, but there are some that are made
with a line voltage. The line voltage ones are becoming more popular
because it means not having to use a 12 volt transformer.
If you have MR16 halogen light bulbs in your home or business, then you want
to make sure of several characteristics when replacing them. You need to
make sure that the reflector opening is 2 inches, verify the operating voltage
of the lamp and the pin spacing of the bulbs themselves. A typical MR16
halogen has a pin spacing at 5.3 millimeters whereas some of the higher voltage
MR16's can go up to 8 millimeters. It's important to also get the wattage
of the lamp which is clearly marked in most cases. If you have these
basics then the only other thing you will need is the beam spread. This is
determined by degrees but also by a descriptive term like narrow flood or narrow
spot and so on. If you can find these characteristics, then you can find
them on our web site or you can call us to verify your information.
In summary, halogen light bulbs are available in wide varieties and sizes,
and can be used, among many other things, to replace standard incandescent light
bulbs. Of course, you will need fixtures that will have the correct equipment
for the MR16 halogen bulbs. They will emit a whiter, brighter light that is
considered by a vast majority of people more desirable than regular light bulbs.
Whatever type of fluorescent you choose or have, you will be saving energy while
getting the most light you can for your money. We have a large inventory
of halogen bulbs for nearly every type of light fixture in the field. If
you need help identifying a MR16 halogen bulb, our customer service
representatives can help you determine what you have.