Choosing the right lights for your swimming pool can be a very illuminating experience (pun intended). Most often, when choosing lights for their pool, people will just go with the cheapest option and be done with it. But is that really the right frame of mind? Not choosing the right lights for your swimming pool will not only cost more in the long run, but can also add more to your to-do list of pool maintenance tasks.

Pros and Cons of Each Pool Light Type

There are three common pool light types, halogen, incandescent, and the new kid on the block, LED pool lights. While we have our personal favorites here at Mr Pool Man, choosing the right lights for your swimming pool eventually boils down to your budget, importance of efficiency, and how much features matter to you.

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Incandescent Pool Lights

These are the oldest lights in the bunch. This is basically just your regular light bulbs that produce light by running current through a filament until it glows bright. If you think that’s terribly inefficient, then you’re right, they’re the most inefficient type of pool lighting in the bunch. In addition to being inefficient, incandescent pool lights also have the lowest rated lifespan. The heat generated by the bulbs translate to an average of 1,000 hours of usage before the bulb burns out. A thousand hours doesn’t sound like much because it isn’t. If you love night swimming and lets say you just use your pool lights for 4 hours a day, then you would have to replace your lights before the year was out. Don’t count incandescent lights out though, some people still prefer to use these because of the natural light tone that they’ve all grown to be accustomed to.

Halogen Pool Lights

Halogen Pool lights are currently the standard for pool lights, but are slowly becoming overtaken by LED lights, and we’ll find out more about that in a bit. Halogens are basically just like your incandescent lights but they have a small amount of halogen gas trapped inside of the bulb. What this does is it allows the filament to operate at much higher temperatures which translates to a brighter light at lower power consumption and a longer lifespan. Halogens generally last longer than Incandescent pool light with lifespans ranging anywhere from 2,000 to 2,500 hours of usage.

LED Pool Lights

LED pool lights are fairly new but they are slowly overtaking halogen pool lights as the standard for lighting. LED functions by passing current through light emitting diodes (hence, LED) which are extremely efficient and bright. Many LED pool lights are rated for 50,000 hours of usage, but even if we go on the conservative side of 25,000 hours, that’s still 10 times longer than halogen lights or 25 times longer than your traditional incandescent pool lights. For more in-depth comparison between LED and Halogen Pool lights, click here.

Pool Light Comparison Table

Light Type Pros Cons

Incandescent Pool Lights

  • Very Inexpensive
  • Natural-Colored Lights
  • Very Inefficient, wasting 90% of energy consumed
  • Very short lifespan, averaging 1,000 hours of use before needing to be replaced

Halogen Pool Lights

  • Inexpensive
  • Less inefficient than Incandescent Pool Lights
  • Longer lifespan at 2,500 hours
  • Less Efficient than LED lights
  • No Color Changing option
  • Runs HOT

LED Pool Lights

  • Very Efficient, uses 90% less energy than traditional bulbs
  • Can last up to 50,000 hours (25,000 if we're being conservative)
  • Can change Colors
  • Runs much cooler
  • Higher Initial Costs
  • Dirty stares from neighbors from envy because of your energy-efficient, color-changing lights


If you have the budget, then LED pool lights are the right lights for your swimming pool. The upfront cost aside, they last much longer than your traditional incandescent or halogen pool lights and they have much more in terms of bells and whistles. Not only that, but with the rising electricity costs in Australia, going to for an efficient pool lighting solution seems like the obvious choice. We mentioned that LED lights use 90% less energy than incandescent or halogen lights, but how does that convert to numbers? Simply put, if you use $400 a year on electricity for lighting your pool with traditional bulbs, that cost would be around $40 with LED pool lights. For more information about how to change your pool lights, click here.

On electricity savings alone, the LED lights would be paying for itself! If you want to translate that savings into LED lights, then check out our Payment Page for options on how you can spread out your payments on new LED lights and use that energy savings to pay for the lights themselves!

So which is the right light for your swimming pool? If you’re like us and you want to get the best out of your pool, the LED pool lights are the way to go.

Do you have any questions about this topic or the featured products? No worries, we're here to help! Drop us a question down below and we'll get back to you ASAP.

Happy swimming :)

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