This is probably the most common HID light on the market, the 400W HID (Metal Halide or HPS) bulb. It’s not hard to find this fixture in a commercial or industrial facility. Along with their associated ballasts, these lights consume around 455 Watts every time they are turned on. Want to learn how to save 75% or more?
Replacing 400W HID with a LED 100W RetrofitKit
So what is a 100W RetrofitKit? It is essentially a kit containing everything to replace the HID bulb and ballast in an existing fixture. Using your existing fixture, we basically take all the parts out of the fixture (bulb, ballast, reflector and socket). To replace 400W HID, we recommend our 100W LED Retrofit Kit.
Our Retrofit Kit includes a LED Head and all the brackets to install the head into the existing fixture. It also includes an external LED Driver.
Installing a Retrofit Kit is quick and painless:
1. remove the bulb.
2. remove the ballast
3. remove the reflector (you won’t need it as LED light is directional)
4. remove the socket that held the old HID bulb.
Once the fixture is gutted, you will need to figure out what mounting option works best. The supplied mounts provides many options. Mount the driver where the old (removed) ballast was located and wire it to the input wires of the fixture. Install the head onto the mounting bracket you configured, and hook up the drivers red / black wires to the LED Heads red / black wires.
Clean the lens and lock up the fixture. You’re done.
Energy Savings: 100W LED versus 400W Metal Halide
Below is a chart showing how much you can save, per fixture, converting from 400W HID to 100W LED. This assumes 12 hours a day operation, 365 days a year.
100 LED Watts replacing 400 Watts for 12 hrs/day 365 days/yr saving 1577 kw/year *
* includes ballast draw
There are several things to take into consideration when planning lighting for a gym. Gyms need a lot of light and must appear bright and airy at all times. They have different sections and each requires specific lighting. The light fixtures you choose must always be based on the needs of the area.
The success of a fitness business usually hinges on customer retention. If people love a gym, they will keep coming back. Lighting can make or break a gym. Some gyms are cold and sterile, almost hospital-like, and their lighting does not create a warm environment. The good news is that you can transform a gym just by changing the lighting. You can redesign each room to get the response you want from gym members. Light has a very powerful effect, it can motivate or demotivate.
The Relationship between Light, Mood, and Movement
Nothing has a greater impact on mood and movement in a gym than lighting. Most facilities incorporate as much natural light as possible because it has the ability to improve mood. Natural light has a positive impact on alertness, the more alert someone is, the more energized they will be.
The light color that people respond positively to is the one most similar to natural light. It is on clear, sunny days that people feel most alert and energized – which is why light that mimics natural light should be used in gyms.
We’ve installed LED lighting in many gymnasiums, so we’ve decided to give lighting recommendations for different gym sections.
Lighting Different Areas of a Gym
Workout areas are the most important areas of a gym because people come to a gym to work out. These sections should have bright lights that enhance alertness. In large rooms where high-intensity workouts like aerobics or boot camps are performed, the lights should have a color temperature of 4000K.
These lights help gym members to see the instructor and also avoid injury. To enhance the effect, the lights can be programmed to change intensity or color. They can also be paired with high-energy videos or music.
In areas where yoga or meditation are done, soft light is needed. The light installed should create a calming environment. LED fixtures installed in these areas should be dimmable to create a relaxed mood.
In cycling classes where individuals don’t physically interact, darker light is acceptable. But the instructor must be able to make the room fully bright if need be – and this is where dimmers come in. Workout rooms should never be completely dark. Some lights should always be on to light up the paths and the exit in case of emergencies, or if a participant needs to leave during a session.
In the weightlifting and cardio areas, bright light fixtures with a slightly lower lumen output are recommended. This is because gym members may have to look at the light when using machines that require them to lie on their backs. If the light is too bright, it will make their eyes uncomfortable.
LEDs used in these areas can have milky lens covers or they can be combined with diffusers. Lighting designers must also pay attention to glare levels as most workout machines and treadmills will cause glare if the light is too bright or installed in the wrong spot.
Pool and Showers
The lights used in pool and shower areas must be UL Listed for wet locations. Recessed lighting is also perfect for these places as the fixtures will be more protected if they are housed inside the ceiling and not suspended.
Lights installed in the pool area must have three qualities: durability, resistance, and safety. While there are no set foot candle standards for pools, they should have a minimum of 200 lux over their surfaces during the day and night. The lighting installed in the shower area should have a high level of brightness to improve safety and visibility.
Lockers and Changing Area
The changing area of a gym plays a vital role in customer satisfaction. It should always appear hygienic and the lighting must create a sense of space and luxury.
The changing area usually serves as a relaxation spot after working out. For this reason, the lighting installed must be bright but gentle. People also need bright light as they open their lockers and retrieve or put their personal belongings. Lighting experts shouldn’t be afraid to mix and match light fixtures of different types or lumen outputs. They can install soft lights in the changing area and bright lights in the locker area.
The exterior lights of a gym can attract potential members or drive them away. High-quality light fixtures can make those outside the gym to see what’s going on inside and be motivated to join. The lights can also make the exterior safe and make people want to linger.
When choosing exterior light fixtures for a gym, the most crucial factor is durability. Only fixtures that are UL Listed for wet and damp locations should be used as they will be constantly exposed to outdoor elements like rain, heat, and wind.
The walkway leading to the gym must be well-lit as this lowers the chances of accidents. Lighting poles with mounted lights or wall mounted fixtures that distribute light downwards can be used – the most important thing is to create a safe, attractive walkway.
The Bottom Line
The most important factor in gym lighting is client comfort. If people don’t feel comfortable in a gym, they won’t go back. The lighting should create an environment that is inviting, safe, and enjoyable. Use the right LED lighting to create a perfect environment for exercise.
Commercial spaces are not equal and their lighting needs are as different as night and day. Take for example, a textile manufacturing factory. Very bright light is needed here as the workers have to make sure that the fabric colors, the stitching, and the finishing are perfect. An office, on the other hand, may not need very bright light as the tasks performed may not call for clarity and contrast.
Even if the textile factory and the offices are located in buildings with the same square feet, their lighting needs will never be equal. The activities carried out in the spaces dictate the light fixtures to be used to provide sufficient illumination.
When it comes to lighting, the last thing people think of is numerical figures. Why think of numbers when all you need to know is whether the light is bright enough or very dull? But like it or not, numerical figures play a crucial role in lighting.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), requires workplace lighting to be measured in foot candles.
Just what is a foot candle and why is it so important in lighting?
A foot candle accurately measures how bright light is 1 foot away from a light source. It is the most common unit of measurement for lighting and is used by lighting professionals to determine light levels in indoor and outdoor spaces. In short, a foot candle measures the intensity of light in a space.
In this post, we’ll be giving foot candle recommendations for 5 different types of settings.
1. Offices and Interior Spaces
When an office is well-lit, workers are able to accomplish tasks safely and efficiently. Additionally, good light levels can help prevent eye strain, allowing employees to work comfortably for long periods of time. However, too much light is just as bad as too little light as it makes it hard for workers to do their tasks.
Since workers in an office have no way of measuring the intensity of light, there are some questions you should ask yourself if you are a building owner, a facility manager, or a decision-maker.
5 questions to ask yourself to find out whether the lighting in an office or indoor space is sufficient
The foot candles needed in offices and interior spaces are usually dependent on the tasks that are carried out. General office spaces only need 20 foot candles. But spaces where detailed tasks are carried out, like drafting, need plenty of light – approximately 50 foot candles.
Conference rooms need about 30 foot candles as visually challenging tasks are carried out in them. Doctors’ offices need even more light as complicated, intricate procedures are usually conducted in these rooms. 100-200 foot candles are needed in these offices.
Common rooms like lunch rooms and rest rooms do not need a lot of light. 15 foot candles are enough for lunch rooms while 18 foot candles are adequate for rest rooms. The interior spaces of general retail stores, car showrooms, and service areas require 50 foot candles. Department stores only need 40 foot candles to ensure people can easily see and locate products.
Consider Reflection and Shadows
While these are the recommended foot candles for these areas, lighting designers should also take into account the reflection caused by objects and components in interior spaces. Walls, furniture, and machines in a room can reflect up to 50% light while floors can reflect up to 40% light.
When installing lighting fixtures in an office, an electrical professional should avoid spacing the fixtures very widely as this may lead to the creation of shadows. Objects positioned between such lights may also be the cause of shadows.
Primary sources of light can also create shadows if they are positioned directly above or behind workers in an office. If you are installing lighting fixtures in an office, be sure to test the area’s lighting conditions or reconstruct the office layout if possible to ensure there are no shadows when the lighting fixtures are installed.
If light is unevenly distributed in an office or an indoor space, it creates dark spots in some areas. Because the lighting levels will be inconsistent, people’s eyes will have to constantly readjust to the light, and their eyes will get strained in the process. The lighting conditions of interior spaces can be improved by painting walls white, replacing traditional light fixtures with LED, and getting rid of tinted or damaged fixtures.
There are different types of warehouses: private warehouses, public warehouses, automated warehouses, climate-controlled warehouses, and distribution centers. Different types of activities are carried out in these warehouses, which means different light fixtures are needed. Areas that don’t see a lot of activity like storage rooms require 5-10 foot candles. Loading bays and inspection rooms, which see a lot of activity, need very bright light – 30-50 foot candles. Cold storage rooms, warehouse aisles, and open warehouses support 20 foot candles of light.
Warehouse workers have to handle products of different sizes on a daily basis. The size of the items usually dictates the amount of light required. 20-50 foot candles of light are needed in spaces where small objects with tiny labels are frequently handled. In areas where bulky items with big labels are handled, 10-20 foot candles are enough.
We know that foot candle measurements can be quite confusing for people who don’t have a lot of knowledge on lighting.
If you’re not a lighting professional, ask yourself these questions to know whether your warehouse or distribution center is well-lit.
The answers you come up with will help you to know the lighting needs of the warehouse space.
One of the most common warehouse tasks is identification. Workers have to read the labels and documents for products and materials. When installing light fixtures in a warehouse or a distribution center, a warehouse lighting expert must think of contrast levels to ensure they use the right fixtures. The reflective nature of machines, walls, and objects must also be considered to determine whether more or less foot candles are needed.
3. Manufacturing and Industrial Facilities
In factories and manufacturing facilities, some work is usually done by machines. The lighting in these spaces must be bright enough to enhance safety. If workers feel safe, they can focus on their jobs and get more work done. Spaces with printing machines and sheet metal processing machines require 50-100 foot candles. These places need bright light as visual stress can lead to accidents.
Storage rooms that house machine in-feeds and machines only need 5-10 foot candles as they don’t get a lot of activity. Areas where large products are manufactured or assembled only require 30 foot candles while areas where tiny products and materials are produced need 100 foot candles.
To know whether the light in a machining facility is sufficient, ask yourself these questions.
When it comes to machine lighting, two issues usually crop up: odd angles and contrast levels. Large levers, exit or output points, and deep indentations can prevent light beams from illuminating some areas of machines.
To steer clear of these problems, lighting professionals can install fixtures that generate light horizontally or powerful fixtures in the areas that are not lit by overhead fixtures. They can also install different lights (like overhead lights and diffused lights) to create good contrast levels in areas where light contrast is important.
4. Color Matching and Painting Facilities
Because of the detailed nature of the work carried out in these facilities, they usually have very high lighting requirements. But the specific nature of the work performed will determine the foot candles needed. In painting facilities where visual acuity is of utmost importance, 100-150 foot candles are adequate. However, the light fixtures must be mounted no higher than 3 feet.
20-50 foot candles are needed in spaces where simple spraying and normal hand painting are performed. But where fine hand painting and finishing are done, up to 500 foot candles may be needed. The complexity of the tasks will determine the exact foot candles required.
These 5 questions will help you to assess whether the lighting in a painting or color matching facility is enough.
2 lighting details play a very important role in these facilities: Color Rendering Index and Color Temperature. Lights with a high color rendering index reveal the true colors of objects and those with a high color temperature look brighter.
5. Exterior Spaces
The longevity and efficiency of outdoor light fixtures depends on where they are installed. Outdoor spaces are continually affected by ever-changing factors that can wreak havoc on light fixtures. During the day, the sun may deliver adequate light to an outdoor area. At night, the same area may need bright light. Dark public areas support 20-50 foot candles as they need to be well-lit.
If you want to know whether the lighting in an outdoor area is adequate, here are 3 questions to ask.
The different activities performed in outdoor spaces usually determine the foot candles required. Spaces that need the least amount of light are building exteriors. Only 1 foot candle is needed in these spaces. But where safety is a priority, the number goes up to 3. Building entrances and enclosed parking lots (with area lighting) need 5 foot candles while open parking lots support 2 foot candles.
Gas station canopies require 13 foot candles to be adequately lit while pump islands need 20 foot candles. Other outdoor areas that need 20 foot candles are ATMs, active storage yards, gardens, piers, and the exteriors of car dealerships.
When installing lighting fixtures in any of these spaces, lighting experts should follow these recommendations and stick to the industrial lighting guidelines to ensure the fixtures they install are perfect.
Your warehouse or distribution center is the heart of your entire operation, the place where you complete projects and fulfill contracts. Efficiency and productivity are crucial in a warehouse. And for your employees to be efficient and productive, the environment they work in must be conducive.
Having LED lighting in your warehouse is the starting point to enhancing safety and boosting employee productivity. While LED technology is known for the savings it offers, one of its lesser-known benefits is boosting safety. Today, we’ll be looking at 5 ways LED lighting can enhance warehouse safety.
1. It Improves Visibility, Resulting in Fewer Accidents
One of the less discussed benefits of LED lighting is the significant decrease in fire hazard risk realized when fluorescents or high intensity discharge lights are replaced with LEDs. Since LEDs pull very little electricity and produce very little heat, they are less likely to cause any type of fire.
Traditional lights waste a lot of energy as they emit 95% of the electricity they draw as heat. On the other hand, LEDs only emit 5% electricity as heat and convert 95% into light. Because traditional lights waste so much energy, they tend to get very hot. Try putting your hand close to any conventional light bulb and it can easily burn your skin. And because your hand has a different temperature, the temperature change might cause the bulb’s glass to shatter.
If traditional lights are installed incorrectly, recessed into a wall’s plaster without adequate ventilation, or left touching other materials, the heat they produce can easily cause fires. LED lights consume about one-tenth of the electricity conventional lights consume and produce the same amount of lumens (or even more). They produce very little heat and do not pose a fire hazard.
2. Decreased Work Errors
Bad lighting can cause headaches, eye strain, and poor posture. When employees are not comfortable, their concentration decreases, which affects their productivity. They are less alert and energetic and can easily make mistakes that will have a negative impact on your business or jeopardize their safety.
A light’s color temperature determines how people see objects and also impacts their mood and productivity. LED lights for a warehouse must have a color temperature between 4000K and 5000K. These lights produce bright white light that is very similar to natural light.
Get such lights for your warehouse and create a happier, productive work environment for your employees. They will find it easy to read high shelving labels and stack products properly. Shipping mistakes will also be reduced as workers will be able to read small package labels.
3. Cools Down a Warehouse
The high heat produced by traditional fixtures can cause a warehouse’s temperature to fluctuate. For instance, a warehouse may be very cool in the morning and very warm and stuffy in the afternoon. These drastic temperature changes can have a very negative impact on employee productivity.
In addition, conventional lights make the air conditioning to work extra hard to decrease the heat they produce, which means your energy bill will go through the roof. LEDs are designed to operate at lower temperatures and do not cause drastic temperature changes in spaces.
4. Reduces Damage to Property and Loss of Products
The products you store in your warehouse can make or break your business. If products get damaged or lost, your business’ bottom line will be negatively impacted. If your warehouse functions as a distribution center, you can be held liable if your customers’ products get lost or damaged. The last thing you want is your business to suffer because of bad lighting.
Since LED lights are bright and powerful, they illuminate dim corners, high shelves, and back aisles. This means your workers will easily locate products (you may have thought were lost) in the dark corners of your warehouse. LED Lighting will also ensure that your employees do not waste a lot of time searching for items that are close by.
With LED lighting, your workers will be able to organize products properly (which will ensure they don’t get damaged) and those packing them for shipping will be able to find them easily (as no product will be lost).
5. Lower Chances of Forklifts Causing Accidents
Modern warehouses are hectic places filled with a lot of activity. Most hold very many products in order to make the most revenue, which means workers are always in a hurry to do their jobs.
Forklift drivers are some of the busiest people in a warehouse as they are always organizing and rearranging products. They are always moving around in tight warehouse aisles and quickly loading and offloading products. Even the best forklift drivers hurry up to get the job done, exceeding the set speed limits in the process.
If a warehouse is poorly lit, forklift drivers can easily hit other workers or crash into products and damage them. LED lights make sure that forklift drivers see everything clearly, be it their fellow workers or objects. They can easily steer clear of them and avert disaster.
Switch to LED Technology Today
If you’re still using conventional lighting systems in your warehouse, we hope we’ve convinced you to make the switch. Create a safe work environment for your employees and take your business to the next level. LED lighting creates a win-win situation: it saves you money and protects your employees and products. That’s why upgrading to LED needs no contemplation.
One thing we’ve said time and again is that upgrading to LED technology is the best decision you’ll ever make. However, making the decision to switch to LED is only half the battle. Once you’ve made up your mind, there is another important decision to make: to either retrofit your current fixtures or buy new fixtures.
If you’re a business owner or a decision-maker, we know there’s nothing you want more than to save your company money. You may also be looking to lower your company’s environmental footprint and help save the environment. It makes financial sense to retrofit your existing fixtures as retrofits offer the same benefits as new fixtures.
Retrofitting can help you to save money and also impact your business’ bottom line positively – because good lighting increases employee productivity. Just by replacing traditional lighting fixtures with LEDs, you can lower energy consumption by up to 75%. Add lighting controls and energy consumption will go down even more – by up to 90%.
Because we want to clear any doubts about retrofitting, let us discuss how it differs from a full fixture replacement.
What Is Retrofitting?
Retrofitting means adding something that wasn’t part of the original structure. In lighting, it means replacing conventional lamps and ballasts with LEDs without getting rid of the existing fixtures. Retrofitting is recommended if a building’s fixtures are in good working condition.
What Is A Full Fixture Replacement (A Full Redesign)?
This means getting rid of traditional lamps, ballasts, and fixtures and replacing them with new LED fixtures. It is worth noting that a full redesign is more expensive than retrofitting and is only recommended if the existing lighting fixtures are dysfunctional, completely enclosed, if a building is new (and the lighting system hasn’t been installed), or if a building is getting remodeled.
Retrofitting is the most economical way of switching to LED. Here are 4 of its benefits.
1. Low Upfront Costs
One of the reasons many businesses put off switching to LED technology is because of the associated costs. Yes, LEDs were very costly when they were first introduced to the market, but this is no longer the case, especially if you choose retrofits.
Sure, retrofitting requires an initial investment. However, the kits are cheaper than new LED fixtures. Their installation costs are also lower as electricians don’t take a lot of time fixing them.
Retrofits are designed as direct replacements of conventional lighting technologies. They fit perfectly into existing fixtures and offer all the benefits of LED technology for a fraction of the cost. What’s more, you may end up paying a lot less for retrofits as the government and some utilities offer incentives, rebates, grants, and programs that further decrease the upfront costs.
2. Reduced Maintenance Costs
One of the biggest downsides of high intensity discharge lamps is their high maintenance costs. They have very short life expectancies and a very high rate of lumen depreciation so they usually have to be replaced before they reach the end of their lives. Because replacing these lights is a time-consuming process, electricians usually change them all together as changing individual fixtures can be quite expensive.
LEDs have very low maintenance costs as they have the longest lifespans of all lighting technologies. Their shortest lifespan is 50,000 hours, which means you can use them for years without having to replace them. They also retain 70% of their brightness for their entire lives and don’t have to be replaced before their lifetimes come to an end.
3. A Great Way to Future-Proof Buildings
Future-proofing is a general term that can refer to infrastructure, buildings, cities, communities, countries, or even the whole planet. When it comes to buildings, future-proofing means changing a building with an aim of maximizing its whole life value when confronted with unpredictable, ongoing change.
Change is inevitable and the lighting systems that were used 10 years ago are no longer popular today. This is why it is so important to future-proof your building, because like it or not, you’ll have to change it one day.
As environmental pollution continues to have a negative impact on our planet, governments pass new laws that require buildings to become energy-efficient. If there ever comes a time when your building doesn’t meet a new energy demand, it may be demolished or you may have to redesign it. That’s why we recommend retrofitting. It makes your building energy-efficient and prolongs its lifespan.
4. Less Waste
LED lights are designed to last. When you upgrade your lighting to LED, you may end up purchasing fewer lights as new generation LEDs have a high luminous efficacy – they produce more lumens for each watt of electricity they consume. Since LEDs have a long lifespan, you won’t have to replace them for years, which means fewer materials will end up in landfills.
LED fixture retrofits use fewer materials than new fixtures. This lowers the total system cost and the quantity of materials that need to be recycled or thrown away.
Fluorescent lamps and some HIDs contain mercury which can be harmful to the environment if it is not disposed of properly. Changing to mercury-free LEDs and using fewer light bulbs means reducing waste and conserving resources.
While retrofitting has a myriad of benefits, we’ve decided to focus on these four today. Don’t ever believe the lie that retrofits are not as good as new LED fixtures. This may just be a fabrication created by dishonest manufacturers looking to make a quick buck.
At The Lighting Center, we sell both retrofits and new fixtures so you can be sure we’re not trying to promote one product over the other. The retrofit kits we sell are just as good as the new LED fixtures. Talk to us today and we’ll help you choose the best kits for your building.
“Warehouse lighting is a necessary cost that our company has to bear. There are no savings to be made and the best thing we can do is keep expenditure to a minimum.”
If this is what you’re thinking, we completely disagree with you. Your warehouse lighting doesn’t have to impact your business’ bottom line negatively.
Yes, warehouses require many bright lights because they have high ceilings, very few windows, high shelves, and large floors. But they can be well-lit without driving up an electric bill.
A warehouse’s lighting system must do the following:
According to the Department of Labor (DOL) slips, falls, and trips are the top general industrial accidents. If the lights in your warehouse don’t boost safety, workers will get injured and take days off work – which will affect your business. If they don’t increase productivity, your workers won’t be alert or energetic – and your business will suffer.
When buying lighting for your warehouse, you may be confused by all the available options. In this post, we’ll be discussing the pros and cons of different warehouse lights. It is very easy to make a poor purchase decision if you’re misinformed. Use the tips we’ve provided here to get the right lights for your warehouse.
Choose the Proper Lighting System
There are three common types of lights used in warehouses: high intensity discharge lights, fluorescent lights, and LED lights. And while most warehouse owners and managers have upgraded their lighting systems to LED, some warehouses still feature HID lights and fluorescents. Let’s discuss each of these lights in detail.
HID technology generates light by passing a current between two electrodes secured inside a bulb with ionized gas. There are different types of HID bulbs and they are all named after the gas they contain. Some bulbs use sodium, others mercury, and others metal halide.
HID bulbs are more efficient than halogen bulbs. However, even the brightest HID bulbs do not emit very powerful light. High pressure sodium lights give off very yellow light and metal halides do not produce bright white light, even though their light is better than that of HPS lamps
The first fluorescent lamp was developed by four scientists at General Electric in the year 1934. And while the light has both admirers and critics, there’s no denying the fact that it is better than a HID lamp. For a fluorescent to produce light, an electric current triggers the mercury vapor which generates ultraviolet light, causing a phosphor coating on the lamp’s interior to glow.
Fluorescent lights have 2 advantages over HID lights: They consume less electricity and have more color temperature options (their color temperature ranges between 2700K and 6500K).
But these lights are not free of flaws. They don’t function well in very hot or very cold areas and their lifetimes can drastically decrease if they are used in such areas. Their life expectancies can also go down if they are constantly switched on and off.
LED stands for light emitting diode. LEDs produce light by exciting semiconductors, causing them to release light particles. The first visible spectrum LED (one that produced light that could be seen by the human eye) was invented by Nick Holonyak in 1962 as he worked for General Electric.
LEDs consume the least energy of all lighting systems and produce better light because they have a greater color temperature range (2700K-6500K). LEDs are also popular because of their flexibility of design. They don’t emit a lot of heat and are cool to the touch.
Just by looking at the pros and cons of each lighting technology, it’s easy to see LEDs are the best. When buying the lights, here are some things you need to consider.
Determine How Bright You Want Your Warehouse to Be
One thing you may not be aware of is that the color of your warehouse’s ceiling and walls can determine the amount of light needed in the place. For instance, a warehouse with white walls and a white ceiling doesn’t need very bright lights as white paint reflects light, making a place look brighter. However, a warehouse with gray walls and a white ceiling needs brighter lights as gray paint doesn’t reflect light very well.
If you paint your warehouse’s walls and ceiling white, you may not need to get LEDs that produce a lot of lumens. And if the LEDs consume very few watts, they will significantly reduce the lighting part of your electric bill. If your warehouse has skylights, you can save even more energy by switching off all the lights on sunny days.
Pay Close Attention to the Color Temperature
Color temperature usually describes the appearance of the light produced by light bulbs. It enables us to know how the light produced by a bulb will look and feel.
The Kelvin scale is used to measure color temperature as it is very accurate at measuring extremely cold or hot things. Light bulbs with a color temperature between 2000K and 3000K are “warm” and their light color ranges between orange and yellow-white.
Those with a color temperature between 3100K and 4500K are “cool” or “bright” and produce neutral white light that may have a blue tint. Light bulbs with a color temperature above 4500K generate blue-white light that is similar to daylight.
Optics Are Very Important
In order to make maximum revenue per square foot, modern warehouses have very high ceilings and narrow aisles. Old lighting technologies dispense light sideways and downwards. Because they have wide beam angles, they waste a lot of light by delivering it where it isn’t needed.
Most new LEDs incorporate optics for better performance. Optics shape and focus the light LEDs produce, dictating the illumination pattern. They can make the difference between mediocre and great lighting in a warehouse. They ensure LEDs deliver narrow beam angles which are perfect for high warehouse ceilings and racking systems.
Lighting experts use photometry to determine the foot candles needed in a warehouse and how the light should be distributed across the entire surface. The Lighting Centre can conduct a free lighting audit to determine the best optics for your warehouse.
Don’t Forget Lighting Controls
Lighting controls have significantly changed the way energy is used as they make sure that lights are only on when it’s necessary. They are part and parcel of every great lighting design as they automatically regulate the light output. One of the best things about LEDs is that they work well with all types of lighting controls – from occupancy sensors to dimmers.
You can significantly reduce the energy consumption of your warehouse by installing different lighting controls in different rooms. For example, you can install motion sensors in the lights outside your warehouse and occupancy sensors in the busy areas of the warehouse.
The Fixtures Must Be Properly Spaced
The placement of the lighting fixtures in your warehouse should be just right. Place them too close to each other and they will cause glare and make it difficult for your employees to work, affecting their productivity in the process. Light fixtures that are too close may also create bright spots as their light may overlap.
Fixtures that are too far apart can cause dark spots in a warehouse as some areas will lack light. A lighting designer can recommend the best placement for light fixtures and help you to steer clear of issues like glare, bright spots, and dark spots.
The pole-mounted lights usually seen in parking lots across the country can offer building managers and property owners many excellent benefits if the traditional lamps are replaced with LEDs. LEDs operate differently from conventional lighting systems in the way they produce light and distribute it.
While traditional lighting systems like HID lamps use fuel sources to generate light, LEDs use semiconductors. LEDs have multiple diodes with separate optics and distribute light evenly across surfaces.
If your main reason for switching to LED technology is to save money, here are three ways you’ll achieve your goal.
The biggest money-saver of LEDs is their low energy consumption. This is the major reason why facility managers and property owners embrace LED lighting. LEDs consume less than half of the electricity conventional lighting systems consume and generate higher-quality light.
Let us give you a short example.
High pressure sodium and metal halide parking lot lights usually have wattages between 250 and 1000. However, they also need ballasts to regulate their voltage and current. Ballasts consume about 15% of the electricity HID lights consume.
The wattage of LED parking lot light fixtures is usually between 65 and 450 and they don’t need ballasts. As soon as traditional lights are replaced with LEDs, energy consumption instantly goes down by up to 75%. Add lighting controls and you can reduce energy consumption by up to 90%. Each LED fixture can save you between $100 and $400 every year. If your parking lot has many lights, you can save thousands of dollars every year and recoup your investment in a very short time.
Maintenance Cost Reduction
One of the best features of LEDs has to be their low-maintenance, which boils down to the way they produce light. As we said earlier, LEDs use semiconductors to generate light, hence their light output decreases gradually over time. Because of the way they are designed, LEDs have a very long lifespan, which means you don’t have to replace the bulbs for years. HID lights, on the other hand, use a fuel source to emit light. As the fuel gets used up, the lights’ functionality decreases.
To service or change parking lot lights, electricians and electrical contractors use bucket trucks or lifts. But since LEDs have such long lifespans, they don’t have to be serviced every now and then. You will save money you would have spent paying electrical contractors to service or change the lights.
You Won’t Need As Many Fixtures
Most parking lot lighting poles usually have 1-2 lighting fixtures while those in busy areas may have up to 4 fixtures. When using traditional lighting systems, you may need more fixtures to ensure your parking lot is well lit at night – as they lose their brightness very fast. However, since LEDs produce higher-quality light, you may only need a few fixtures to produce the same amount of light (lumens) produced by the conventional lights. LEDs also discharge light through a multipoint design which ensures the light is evenly distributed across a surface – in this case a parking lot.
According to research, lighting consumes almost 20% of the electricity in commercial properties. Businesses and companies are always looking to improve the energy efficiency of their lighting systems in order to lower their electric bills. The introduction of LED technology and changes to lighting efficiency standards have both contributed to the drastic reductions in energy consumption by commercial buildings.
According to a report released by the Department of Energy, by 2016, LED installations had risen to 874 million units. And while this figure is massive, the LED market penetration hasn’t even reached 15%. The Department of Energy estimates that by 2035, the market penetration will have reached 90%.
LED manufacturers, in an effort to reduce the gap, came up with retrofit kits that can be used in traditional lighting fixtures. These kits come in different designs and can fit different conventional fixtures.
However, while many property owners and building managers know about LED technology, they are hesitant to make the switch because they fear the associated costs. The thing is, retrofitting is not as expensive as buying new LED fixtures. Converting to LED lighting might have been expensive in the beginning (when LEDs were first introduced), but it no longer is.
If you’ve been postponing switching to LED technology, here are five great reasons why you should do it now.
1. You Can Carry Out the Project in Phases
The main reason businesses and facility managers put off converting to LED technology is because of the upfront costs involved in the upgrade. One way to minimize costs and avoid cash flow issues is by implementing the project in phases.
For instance, if you own a manufacturing plant, you can decide to install LEDs in the manufacturing area first before moving to the other areas. Installing the lighting in one part of the building gives your employees a chance to get used to the light and they can also give you valuable feedback. If they complain that the light is too bright or too dull, you can have it changed before LEDs are installed in the other areas of the plant.
If you’re an electrical professional or contractor who has been given the task of installing LED lighting in one part of a building, the small project can be a way to show a property owner the benefits of LEDs and get them to say yes to a full upgrade. The success of the small retrofitting project may give them the motivation they need to continue with the upgrade and they may even ask you to speed up its implementation.
2. Rebates and Incentives
Rebates and incentives can make converting to energy-efficient lighting a less-expensive venture because they significantly reduce the upfront costs related to an upgrade. Utility companies across America have different rebate programs for LED lighting and provide cash rebates and incentives for commercial LED lighting projects.
While the programs are different in each area, utilities generally offer rebates for new energy-efficient lighting units installed or on the total quantity of energy savings delivered. For instance, the utility company PSEG located in Long Island gives a $5 rebate for a 4-inch linear LED lamp and a $50 rebate for a 2″x4″ LED panel. Companies usually have specific rebate values for lighting fixtures, bulbs, controls, and other energy-efficient lighting technologies. But in order to make the most of them, you need to be precise with your planning.
Utility companies normally give rebates and incentives to lower the demand for electricity on the grid. Many of them offer free energy assessments to help building owners identify potential lighting projects and also give information on the available rebates.
If you own or manage a property, be sure to reach out to your electric utility early on. The rebates and incentives given by the company may be enough to influence your upgrade decision. Some of the easiest ways to find the right rebate programs is by contacting your utility directly, looking for incentives using ENERGY STAR’s Rebate Finder (http://www.energystar.gov/rebate-finder), or searching on the Department Of Energy’s Rebates and Savings Page (http://www.energy.gov/savings/search).
However, it is worth noting that as the cost of LEDs continues to go down, the rebates offered by utility companies also go down. Utilities usually adjust the rebates at the end of each calendar year but at times change them without prior warning. If you wait for a year to carry out your LED conversion project, you may miss out on a good rebate check. This single reason should be enough to convince you to conduct the project earlier rather than later.
3. LEDs Positively Impact Your Bottom Line
There are two reasons people mostly give for not upgrading to LED lighting.
“The current lights are good enough.”
“The upfront costs are too high. I can’t afford a full-scale upgrade”
The truth of the matter is, no lighting system is as efficient as LED. Sure, the lights in your warehouse may be providing sufficient light, but they probably consume a lot of electricity and don’t have long lifespans.
Some of the major benefits of LED technology are energy savings, better light output, lower maintenance, and increased property values. But most people usually make the switch because of energy savings – and who wouldn’t? LEDs consume about half of the electricity other lighting systems consume and cut the lighting portion of an electric bill in half.
Let us give you an example.
If your commercial space has a hundred 128W fluorescent fixtures and you replace them with a hundred 52W LEDs and the electricity cost in your area is 10.82 cents per kWh (which is the national average in the US) and the lamps operate for 2,870 hours every year, your lighting project will pay for itself in approximately 4.2 years and save you $41,116 during the lifespan of the LEDs. You will have a return of investment (ROI) of 411%.
If you live in New York where the average electricity cost is 15.03 cents per kWh, your investment will pay for itself in 3 years and save you $57,000 during the lifespan of the lights. Your ROI will be 571%.
A report published in 2017 by the Department of Energy stated that energy-efficient properties have higher market values, higher occupancy rates, low operating expenses, and low rental concessions per square foot. The net operating income of energy-efficient buildings is also higher than that of inefficient buildings.
4. You Can Opt for Alternative Funding Structures
As we mentioned earlier, one of the reasons property owners and facility managers give for not upgrading to LED is that they can’t pay for a complete lighting upgrade at once. While this is a very legitimate reason, it shouldn’t be a hindrance to converting to LED technology as there are alternative pricing structures.
Alternative funding structures like Special Purchase Vehicles (SPVs) have created new opportunities for companies and municipalities to upgrade their lighting systems without coming up with the initial capital or taking on extra debt. Through SPV, you lease the lighting products for a set monthly fee. When the lease period comes to an end, you have the option of buying the assets or returning them.
Another example of an alternative funding structure is Energy Performance Contracting (EPC). Here, an energy service company installs energy-efficient lighting and is repaid over a period of time as the customer benefits from energy savings.
EPC is available in different forms, but they all comprise a service where the energy service company formulates and implements a project (which is financed by a third party) and the savings are guaranteed to be enough to pay for the implementation costs and financing of the project. Some lending institutions usually offer low interest rates for projects that enhance energy efficiency.
The third alternative funding structure we’ll talk about today is known as lighting as a service (LaaS). LaaS is comparable to services such as Spotify, Netflix, Audible, or leasing a cell phone. Property owners and building managers avoid paying the high upfront costs of LED upgrades and instead pay a monthly fee to use the lights provided by the service company.
These different pricing models break down common barriers to entry, offer instant and continuous energy savings, may allow small upgrades to the products, shift the maintenance responsibility to another party, and lower the risk of operating a full-scale lighting system.
5. LED Lighting Improves Tenant Comfort
Most property owners usually think “The lights in my property are working just fine, why should I change them?”
As a property owner, we are sure your main concerns are profitability and tenant comfort. Sure, your existing lights may be in good working order, but they may have a negative impact on your bottom line and cause discomfort to your tenants.
If you care about your tenants – and we are pretty sure you do – you care about their comfort. If your building houses businesses and companies, the people in those establishments expect it to have good lighting that increases their productivity and doesn’t cause discomfort. If your tenants are comfortable, they won’t be looking to move anytime soon.
LED lighting increases productivity, enhances safety, decreases maintenance costs, and generates less heat than traditional lighting systems. It has better color accuracy, does not contain dangerous materials (which are harmful to the environment), can be used in low voltage applications, attains full brightness instantly, has a better lumen decay profile, and can be used in both hot and cold environments.
As buildings become better and tenants’ expectations rise, improving tenant comfort with energy-efficient lighting can be one of the best things you ever do for your building.
To Sum It Up
If you haven’t switched to LED technology yet, you’re not alone. However, you cannot afford to postpone the project any longer as there are so many benefits to be enjoyed. Sure, your current lights may be fully functional, but conventional lighting systems are getting phased out and a time will come when you won’t be able to use those lights anymore. In addition, the lights use up a lot of money and time. Make the switch today and start enjoying all the benefits of LEDs.
More than 150 years ago, a product was introduced that would forever change how people used energy in their homes and offices – it was the light bulb. The invention revolutionized the way buildings were designed, kick started new businesses, and lengthened the average workday. It also triggered new energy breakthroughs – from electric motors to power plants.
Lighting has come a long way since Thomas Edison patented the first incandescent light bulb back in 1879, and more advancements continue to be made by the day. These advancements LED to the invention of the first visible spectrum LED by Nick Holonyak back in 1962 as he was working for General Electric.
No doubt about it, LEDs have come a long way since they were first introduced into the market. New LEDs are more affordable and consume less energy than their older counterparts. They also have longer lifespans.
If you’ve been using traditional lights – and you’re tired of their high energy consumption, low light output, and short lifespans – and you’ve decided it’s time to convert to LED lighting, you’ve come to the right place.
There are several things you should consider when selecting the best LED replacements for your conventional lighting systems. We’ve covered them all in this post to ensure you don’t experience buyer’s remorse after you buy LEDs.
Let’s get started.
First, Understand the Difference between Lumens and Wattage
One of the mistakes people have made since LEDs were first introduced is buying them according to their watts. Watts have nothing to do with the amount of light a LED bulb produces.
Let’s give you a little example.
You’re feeling hungry so you decide to go to the grocery store to buy some bananas. Once you get there, you decide that you also need some milk to take with your cereal the next morning. So, you buy 2 pounds of bananas and 1 gallon of milk.
“What has this got to do with watts and lumens?” You’re asking
Our point is, when buying LEDs, lumens are what you should be looking at, not the watts (wattage).
Lumens are to LEDs what pounds are to fruits. Lumens measure the total amount of visible light a light source produces. They are the most important thing in determining light output.
So, are watts important? Absolutely
Watts measure the amount of electricity a light bulb draws. They also tell you how efficient a bulb is –together with lumens.
This brings us to lumens per watt (luminous efficacy).
When you look at the lumens per watt, you are able to know the efficiency of a LED bulb. Luminous efficacy measures the lumens a light source produces for each electricity watt it consumes.
Calculate the Light at the Source and the Delivered Light
We’ll get a bit technical now, but not too technical because we know we may lose you at some point. Let’s talk a little about lumens, luxes, and foot candles .
Lumens measure the amount of light produced at the source of the light.
A lux is a metric measurement that measures luminous flux per unit area. It is equivalent to 1 lumen per square meter and is used to measure the intensity of light that passes through or hits a specific surface.
A foot candle is an imperial measurement and measures how bright the light is 1 foot away from a light source.
1 foot candle is equal to 10.764 luxes (approximately 10 times the equivalent lux measurement)
1 lux is equal to 0.09 foot candles.
What are we getting at?
As light spreads out across a surface, it becomes less intense. LEDs distribute lumens more efficiently and can yield more foot candles and luxes than traditional light bulbs, something most applications require.
LEDs are directional lights, they emit light in a specific direction hence their light output is much better. Traditional lights are omnidirectional, which means they discharge light in all directions – they don’t focus it in one place.
Let’s say you have metal halide bulbs in your parking lot fixtures and each is supposed to emit 18,000 lumens. However, they emit light all over the place (360°) because HID lights are omnidirectional, so the electrician has to put a reflector in each fixture to reflect the light back and deliver it to the parking lot below. During the reflective process, up to 30% lumens are lost.
But because LEDs are directional lights, you can use LEDs that produce 12,000 lumens in each parking lot fixture and the light they produce will be better than that produced by the more powerful metal halide bulbs. In addition, some LEDs are usually lensed to ensure all the light they discharge is directed to a particular surface.
Look At the Efficiency of the LEDs
These days, LED manufacturers are a dime a dozen so the market is flooded with LEDs of varying efficiencies. Some LEDs emit 70 lumens per watt while others emit 200 lumens per watt. This is another reason why you shouldn’t look at the watts when choosing LED replacements for your traditional lighting systems.
One manufacturer may say that their 150W LED light replaces a 450W metal halide light while another may say that their 250W LED replaces a 450W metal halide. A particular LED wattage cannot replace all conventional lights of a particular wattage. This is the main reason why utility companies find it hard to create general rebate programs for LED conversions.
Consider Light Degradation
One of the biggest upsides of LEDs is that they never lose more than 30% of their initial lumens throughout their entire lifetimes. The same cannot be said for traditional lighting technologies as their light output quickly decreases from the minute they are switched on. These lights suffer from serious lumen degradation.
Let’s say you use metal halide lamps in your warehouse. When the bulbs were new, they may have produced 30,000 lumens, which is very good. But because these lights tend to lose their lumens pretty fast, they may only produce 15,000 lumens by the time they get to half of their lifespans. If you think that’s bad, brace yourself for this: their energy consumption will never go down no matter how many lumens they lose. Now that’s pretty bad.
If you bought the metal halides 2 years ago, they could be 40% less bright than they were when they were first installed. But if the light they emit is sufficient for your space, you may want to get LEDs with a lower light output – not corresponding versions of the metal halides. The light they produce will be adequate for your space. Depending on your setting, this could be an opportunity to not only decrease your power consumption but to also lower the number of fixtures needed to provide the same level of illumination.
LED highbay lighting is used in many public places, like parking zones, football stadiums, baseball fields, skate parks, outdoor tennis courts, basketball courts, sports halls, airport tarmacs, transportation terminals, highways, outdoor storage yards, piers, roundabouts, freeway interchanges, ports, and more. These lights are ideal for large areas that require uniform light.
But while LEDs are used in a variety of roadway lighting and street lighting applications, most high mast lights still have HID lamps. The Lighting Center manufactures industrial LED highbay fixtures that make perfect replacements for high pressure sodium, metal halide, and mercury vapor lamps.
When you replace conventional lighting systems with LED technology, energy savings can be as much as 90%, especially if you integrate energy-saving controls like motion sensors or photo sensors. LEDs provide intense, high-quality light and spread it evenly across surfaces.
A Little About HighBay Lights
The mounting height of LED highbay lights usually ranges between 60 feet and 120 feet (or more). The pole the lights are mounted on is at least 30 meters tall and several independent lighting fixtures are mounted on it. These fixtures may be 4, 6, or 8.
In rare instances, highbay lighting poles may have 10, 12, or 16 lights. These fixtures may form a square or a circular pattern to dispense light uniformly over a specific area. Sometimes the lights are usually surrounded by circular shields to decrease light pollution or to prevent light from affecting neighborhoods that are next to the highway.
While most high mast lights use high pressure sodium bulbs, LEDs are replacing these traditional lights by the day as more decision-makers realize their benefits. Freeway interchange poles normally have 2-12 1000-watt high pressure sodium lamps that are evenly spaced.
A single 1000-watt HPS lamp with a ballast draws 100 watts of electricity. If a lighting pole has 8 of these lights, its consumption will be 9.6 kilowatts. Because of the high energy consumption of these lights, most cities usually switch off the lights after 11 pm to cut down energy costs. But when these lamps are replaced with LEDs, the lights can run all night without driving up an electric bill.
5 Reasons Why LED HighBay Lights Are Better Than Traditional Lights
1. Lower Energy Consumption – Up To 90%
One of the best things about LEDs is their low energy consumption. It is without a doubt the biggest benefit of LED technology. As we had said earlier, a 1000-watt HPS lamp with a ballast pulls 100 watts of electricity. Since most high mast poles have several of these fixtures, they send electric bills through the roof.
LEDs need very few watts in order to produce sufficient light. And thanks to advancements in LED technology, new LEDs need even fewer watts to produce more lumens. LED lights alone can reduce energy consumption by up to 75%. When paired with controls like motion sensors and daylight sensors, energy usage can go down by up to 90%.
When buying LED highbay lights, never look at the watts, focus on the lumens – especially lumens per watt. Lumens per watt tell you how many lumens the light produces for every single watt of electricity it consumes. For instance, a LED that produces 140 lumens per watt consumes less electricity than one that produces 100 lumens per watt. The high mast luminaires manufactured by The Lighting Center produce more lumens per watt. To know a light’s efficacy, divide the lumens produced by the watts consumed.
Something else you should look at is the number of LEDs a light uses to produce a specific number of lumens. Always go for bulbs with more LEDs as this means they don’t work extremely hard to produce adequate light. If the LEDs are fewer, it means they will work harder to produce sufficient light, which may affect their lifespans.
2. They Can Be Paired With Lighting Controls
Because of their long warm up and cool down times, metal halide and high pressure sodium lights don’t work well with lighting controls. LEDs do not have this problem because they achieve full brightness as soon as they are switched on. If you want dimmable LEDs, make sure the ones you buy have drivers that are dimmable (0-10V).
You can pair LED highbays with different types of lighting controls like motion sensors (which switch lights on and off if any activity is detected), photo sensors (which switch off lights as soon as ambient light is detected), or timers (which switch lights on and off automatically at specific times).
3. Better Light Quality
One of the benefits LEDs have over traditional lights is a higher Color Rendering Index (CRI). CRI tells you how good a light source is at revealing the true colors of objects compared to an ideal light source like sunlight. It is a scale with numerical values between 0 and 100. The higher the CRI, the better a bulb’s color rendering ability. Light bulbs with a CRI of 85 and above are excellent at color rendering. Because LEDs have a high Color Rendering Index, their light quality is much better than that of conventional light sources.
Don’t fluorescent lamps also have a high CRI? You’re absolutely right.
However, since fluorescent lights are powered by an alternating current (AC), they tend to flicker, causing headaches and eye strain. LEDs do not flicker because their drivers convert alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC). The lack of flickering, coupled with the high-quality light they produce, make for a better work environment.
However, LEDs with a high Color Rendering Index aren’t required in high mast outdoor environments. We only recommend them for outdoor industrial settings where color rendering is important. Unless you’re getting them for such an environment, don’t pay more for high CRI LEDs.
4. The Payback Period Is Short
It is the wish of every business owner to recoup their investment in the shortest time possible. When you know the estimated return on investment, you can decide whether a venture is worth undertaking or not.
At The Lighting Center, we use the 1 (cost of electricity) + 1 (hours of use) + 1 (rebates) rule to determine the LED payback period. The rebates come in last because their savings may be cancelled by the cost of electricity and the hours of use (the operating times for the lights). In addition, some utility companies do not offer rebates for some LED conversions (some utility companies only give rebates for fixtures with a DLC premium rating, not the standard rating).
What will mostly determine the payback period will be the cost of electricity in your area and how long the lights will operate each day. You shouldn’t worry too much about rebates because we have created many proposals for our customers (who didn’t get rebates when they switched to LED technology) where ROI was under 1 year.
Decreased Maintenance Costs
The biggest problem with traditional lighting technologies, like high intensity discharge lights and fluorescent lights, is that they use ballasts which have very short life expectancies. LEDs use drivers which usually have long lifespans. LEDs also have heat sinks which disperse the little heat they produce, extending their lifetimes.
The average lifespan of LEDs is 50,000 hours, which means they can last for more than 10 years without burning out. However, the driver is likely to fail first. The best drivers on the market (Philips, Inventroniks, and Meanwell) usually come with a warranty of 5 years so be wary of manufacturers who give their drivers a 10-year warranty. Be sure to buy LEDs with high-quality drivers as chances are both will stop functioning at approximately the same time.
We Can Help You Choose the Best LED HighBay Fixtures
The secret to a good lighting design is picking the right optic for the application. We have more than 10 years’ experience in LED technology and have installed LED highbay fixtures in gun ranges, parking zones, storage yards, and many other places.
In all our projects, we make sure that the poles are evenly spaced so they can spread light uniformly over large areas while maintaining the required foot candles. The lights we have installed in gun ranges can illuminate targets that are 100 meters away. We understand optics very well and know how to use them to produce the desired lighting effect.
The Lighting Center manufactures LED highbay lights that are DLC listed and eligible for rebates. Some models come with a 10-year manufacturer’s warranty. Our outdoor lights are rated IP65 or higher and are ETL or UL listed. They can withstand harsh weather conditions and temperature ranges between -30°C to +60°C. They come with different mounting solutions like wall, yoke, sport, pole, and adjustable heads.
Call us today and talk to one of our experts to help you choose the right LED highbay fixtures for your application. If traditional fixtures are already in place, we will carry out an evaluation and recommend products that will replace the current lights and meet your requirements.