New Dusk-to-Dawn Light Bulbs for Your Outdoor Fixtures

GE's Dusk-to-Dawn light bulb is part of the new wave of LED lights bringing added functionality to our homes and offices.

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Most of us know LED bulbs have become the de facto replacement for the classic incandescent bulb. But less well-known is what’s within the LED bulb itself, and what it can do. LED fixtures can be used for everything from generating diagnostic reports to functioning as WiFi hot spots.

The new Dusk to Dawn light bulb from General Electric highlights this trend with something unique and useful — a built-in photo sensor. This means that you can transform a standard light fixture into a light-sensing fixture as easily as screwing in a light bulb. Zero additional work required!

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Set It and Forget It

The built-in sensor means no fiddling with dials or levers for scheduling, and no adjustments for longer or shorter days. Simply install the bulb and leave the wall switch set to the “on” position. The bulb will activate when it gets dark, and shut itself off when it’s light.

Perfect for Outdoor Lighting

Note that the Dusk to Dawn bulb is not a motion sensor, so once it’s on, it stays on until the sun rises. That makes it perfect for areas you prefer to keep continually lit, like an entry door or walkway, but not outside your bedroom window.

Indoor Uses

LED technology is so cheap that it’s good for continuous lighting in interior rooms, such as a mudroom or entry vestibule. One bulb’s eight watts of power puts out 800 lumens — equal to a 60 watt incandescent bulb at less than one-seventh the energy cost.

The Nitty Gritty

The GE Dusk to Dawn bulb is available in an A19 form factor with an E26 socket, meaning it’s similar to a traditional incandescent light bulb in size and socket dimensions. With a three-year warranty, it’s still returnable when most incandescent bulbs are headed for the landfill. One thing to note: It’s not designed for use in a dimmer switch and will likely underperform if placed on one.

Dan Stout
Ohio-based freelance writer and author Dan Stout is a former residential remodeler, commercial site supervisor and maintenance manager. He’s worked on nearly all aspects of building and DIY including project planning and permitting, plumbing, basic electric, drywall, carpentry, tiling, painting and more. He also publishes noir fantasy thrillers, including The Carter Series, from Penguin imprint DAW Books.