It’s the color of the light, which is measured in Kelvin. The originals were at around 2500 and these replacements are 5,000K.
Yes, the color temperature of the light can make a big difference in how a room or area feels. It’s not unusual to need a higher color temperature more than you need more lumens.
That gives me a nice jumping off spot to talk about LEDs.
For those who aren’t familiar with color temperature, numbers under 3000k generally appear a bit red, while higher numbers appear more blue or a purer white. If I remember correctly, old incandescent bulbs are around 2700. So if you’re trying to replicate the look of incandescents, look for a color temperature around there. Higher numbers are often better for task spaces, like kitchens and offices. I have 5000K lights in my wife’s craft room so she can (darn it, could) see colors better. That’s about as extreme as you might want to get.
Lumens refer to the quantity of light rather than it’s color. Again going back to old incandescent bulbs, I think a 60 watt bulb is around 800 lumens, and a 75 watt bulb is around 1100.
The last thing to check with LEDs is whether they are dimmable or not. Most that are dimmable require an appropriate dimmer for LEDs. Old dimmers for incandescent bulbs are just big resistors that reduce the current (or maybe its the voltage)** flowing to the bulb. That makes the bulb give off less light and changes its color to be more red as well. I think LEDs operate by cutting off part of the sine wave of the AC current. The more that is cut off, the less light you get. But the color stays the same.
Dimmable LEDs are generally more expensive because they need the circuitry to handle dimming.
LED lights are available in all sorts of combinations. So look closely at the packaging to determine the color temperature and lumens. And it’s OK to experiment. You’re not going to hurt anything.
As I’ve switched over to LEDs around the house, I have kept a note on my phone with the bulb specs for each room. That way I can keep things consistent as bulbs fail. I’ve stuck to 2700k bulbs in a lot of places to keep the incandescent look I’m familiar with. The master bath used to have halogen bulbs, and I find that 3000k LEDs are a pretty good replacement there. I should bump the kitchen and my home office up to 3000k as well. The 2700k bulbs were a good match to the old bulbs, but my eyes are starting to prefer a brighter white, especially since I’m working from home full time now.
Any way, I’ve rambled on far too long. Hope some of this helps take some of the fear out of switching to LEDs. It took me a while to get on board, but I’m glad I did.
** Let’s see if I can figure it out. Amps is volts times current. No. That’s watts. Volts is current times resistance. So you add more resistance and you need more current to keep the volts the same. Or you get less volts with the same current. So …
Nope, can’t figure it out. Every time I try to learn electronics the learning doesn’t stick around very long. Probably need to use it more.