What Is A Type B Light Bulb?

When you’re in the market for decorative bulbs, you’ll find that most options are type B series. But what is a type B light bulb? In today’s article, we’ll tell you everything about type B bulbs!

What Is a Type B Light Bulb?

There are many types of bulbs, so we classify them according to their shape. Most of us are familiar with type A light bulbs, as we use them around our households all the time. However, type B light bulbs are slightly less popular and have more particular uses.

Type A bulbs have the classic shape of pear-like bulbs. On the other hand, Type B bulbs have a bullet or flame-like shape. Some bulbs bulge at the base, and they get thinner as we reach the top. Other types start narrow at the bottom and continue in the same shape to the top.

Additionally, you can find some bulbs with bent tips. They’re mostly used for decorative purposes. We often call them candelabra bulbs or candle-flame lights. Type B bulbs are typically smaller in size than other bulbs. Therefore, they use less wattage.

As a result, we use them for decorations and in situations that don’t require high light output. Most type B bulbs come with the E26 and the E27 bases. You can also find some bulbs that come with an E12 candelabra base or an E17 base.

Type B Light Bulb Uses

With their low light output, type B is rarely the primary source of lighting in any room. Instead, we use them for decorative purposes, as they have a unique look.

Most people use them in chandeliers, fan lights, wall sconces, and pendant lighting. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t use them for other purposes.

In fact, type B bulbs make any simple fixture look unique. They’re also a good option for a night light.

Choosing the Right Type B Bulb

Type B bulbs come in different styles, wattages, and color temperatures. Let me tell you how to choose the right B-series bulbs for your fixtures.


Generally, most type B bulbs in the market have wattages from around 5W to 60W. We use the 5W bulbs for decorative purposes only, while the 60W bulbs can produce sufficient light output. In fact, it can be a little too bright for most settings.

I found that bulbs from 15W to 40W can fit in most settings. If you’re not sure about the right wattage you need, pick any bulbs that have 25W to 40W.

Color Temperature

You can find type B bulbs in different color temperatures, ranging from warm to cool. If you’re looking for a traditional or classic yellow-tinted color, go for the warm bulbs.

They typically have similar lighting to the old incandescent bulbs. We mostly use them in chandeliers.

On the other hand, cooler bulbs fit better with modern decorations, as they have a whiter and bluer tint.

Type B Bulbs Sizes

On the bulb’s package, you’ll find the letter B followed by one or two digits. The letter B indicates that the bulb is a type B, while the digits indicate the diameter of the bulb. The higher the digits, the bigger the bulb is.

The B8 is the smallest one in the B series. Conversely, the B10 is slightly wider and taller. People consider the B11 to be the medium option too, while the B13 is the biggest bulb in the family.

Type B vs. Type BR and BT Bulbs

People often confuse BR and BT bulbs with being part of the type B family. However, they’re far from being similar.

BR bulbs have a narrow bottom, but they flair out for a wide top. They have two reflector areas that look like a funnel.

On the other hand, BT bulbs have a bulged chimney, which means they have a wider part in the middle. In some cases, people refer to type B bulbs with a blunt tip as BT bulbs, which can be confusing.

Nonetheless, you can easily distinguish between bulged BT and type B bulbs. BT bulbs have a wider middle part, while type B bulbs look like a candle flame.

Type B vs. Type C Bulbs

Type B and Type C bulbs are almost identical to each other. They both have the shape of a candle’s flame, and we use them for the same purposes.

However, type C bulbs look more similar to a cone, while type B bulbs look more like a bullet. You can also tell them apart by checking out the packaging.

Type B Linear Tubes

Type B tubes are different from traditional type B bulbs. They’re fluorescent ballast bypass linear lamps. Some people call them line voltage lamps.

The type B tubes have an internal driver inside them, which helps use less power. Additionally, they’re less expensive than other tube lamps.

However, type B tubes aren’t the safest. When installing these lamps, you’ll need to remove the existing ballast and wire them directly to a non-shunted lamp holder.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Does a Type B Light Bulb Last?

A bulb’s lifespan isn’t related to its type. Instead, it’s determined by the lighting technology inside it. Traditional incandescent bulbs usually last around 1000 hours, while CFL lamps last between 8000 and 20,000 hours.

On the other hand, type B LED lights can last up to 50,000 hours. Type B LED lights have the longest lifespan and the lowest power consumption.

How to Identify a Type B Bulb?

Type B bulbs have a unique flame-like shape. They’re mostly small and don’t produce high brightness.

By checking its package, you can confirm that a bulb belongs to the B-series. You’ll usually find the letter “B” followed by one or two digits.

What Are the Diameters of the B10 and B11 Light Bulbs?

B10 light bulbs’ diameter is approximately 1.25 inches. On the other hand, the B11 light bulbs’ diameter is around 1.3 inches.