What is the Beam Angle for an LED PAR Bulb?

By david_chiodo on 07/31/2018


When you are installing new LED PAR lights you may notice many different options from size to color.  More specifically you may find yourself needing to know just how much light will take to cover or spread light across your desired location.  To determine just how wide your beam of light should be you need to know what the LED PAR bulb’s beam angle is.

Defining Angle or Beam Spread

The beam angle (also called beam spread) of a light bulb is the angle at which light is distributed or emitted across a room, wall, or surface area.  This refers to how much light is dispersed and spread over a specific area. 

Before and After Results of LED Flood Light

For example, a typical flood light that you would find on the outside of a warehouse or shipping area would most likely have a wide beam angle to cover a larger amount of square footage.  LED PAR Bulbs replace incandescent and halogen lamps.

On the other hand, a display case for sunglasses or a museum display usually has a very narrow beam angle to focus the intensity of the light on the item or a specific location on a wall. 


A retail store using incandescent bulbs for their display cases could save a lot of time and money by switching to LED PAR16 Bulbs.  Since retails store are constantly operating light, an LED Bulb has a much longer life than its incandescent counterpart and uses much less energy.

LED PAR bulbs are great replacements for incandescent light bulbs and can achieve a greater color temperature at a fraction of the cost.

Example of LED Par Bulb in Retail Space

Directional versus Omni-Directional versus Semi-Directional Bulbs

  • Directional LED PAR Bulbs are “Directional” bulbs because the light is directed one way.  The reflector in the PAR Bulb works by the forcing the light where?
  • Omni-Directional: PAR LED bulbs allow the LED light to go in all directions.  Omni-Directional LEDs are well suited anywhere a 360-degree pattern of light is needed.
  • Semi- Directional:  LED PAR bulbs focus the light in a 180-degree or narrower beam, making them perfect for ceiling fixtures or canned and recessed lighting. With directional and semi-directional LED lights, no light is wasted, which means they often use even less power and lumens than omni-directional bulbs.

How to choose the right beam angle?

Finding the correct LED PAR Bulb with the correct beam angle can be a little tricky since not all manufacturers offer the same capabilities for each LED PAR Bulb.  In addition, the size of the PAR bulb doesn’t necessarily correlate to the beam angle. 

The most important factor when choosing the correct beam angle is location.  How much area do you need to illuminate?  Will the light be intrusive towards neighbors or other businesses?


PAR ANGLE (Degrees)


Very Narrow



Narrow Spot






Narrow Flood



Wide Flood



Very Wide Flood



The farther the light fixture is from the targeted area, the smaller the beam angle requirements are.  For optimal usage, a fixture or light source should be between 0-20 FT for spot lights and 20 to 60 feet for recessed and flood lights. Read the following blogs to learn the difference between flood lighting and spot lighting click here. Beam Angles

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Some pretty awesome LED lighting blogs you won’t regret reading.

1. The Benefits and Capabilities of Smart Lighting

2. Everything You Need to Know About LED PAR Bulbs.

3. The Future Looks Bright for LEDs