Saturday, November 23, 2013

LED lighting, Tips for getting more for your money

There is no doubt that LED Lighting is the tendency to go with for new and retrofit jobs. Since IESNA
introduced the standards LM-79 & LM-80 in 2008, LED has prospered. Big lighting manufacturers like, Hubbell, Lithonia and Cooper Lighting have invested a lot of money in this technology. But they still have a long way to go, since the technology was nurtured by entrepreneurs that gambled on it without any standards. The most important issue that you have to be aware of when using this technology is that it has a long return on investment (ROI). If you want a fast ROI, this is not the reason you should go with LED Lighting, since it is still very expensive. If you want a fast ROI, you should still look in to fluorescent, which is getting more and more efficient.

The main reason to go with LED is because is a green source of artificial lighting. With this I mean that it does not use toxic materials like mercury to produce artificial light. That said, I am going to give you some tips that can make your investment in LED lighting more efficient, if you are already convinced and have the budget.

1.       Always do a lighting design. This certainly applies to new buildings, but it always has to apply when you are retrofitting with LED Lighting. The LED Light source is more efficient. This means that when you do a design with LED lighting, your design should throw fewer fixtures than with other lighting sources. This is a benefit that you have to take in to account when retrofitting, because if you do not, you would be wasting money. 

2.       Get the whole benefit of the fixture, like dimming. Most LED lighting fixtures are dimmable. This means that you can adapt or lower the lighting output and this means you are lowering the consumption on the fixtures. 

3.       Use Lighting Controls. You can use other lighting controls, like occupancy sensors, and lighting control panels to make your lighting more efficient and save more on your electrical bill. Remember that if you are doing the upgrade to be more efficient, what is going to bring a fast ROI are the savings on your electrical bill for this concept.

4.       Try to benefit from day lighting. Any place that you can benefit from the suns natural light in your building, please do. Controls help you with this, by automatically sensing lighting levels needed and adjusting the light levels on your fixtures or even turning them off if they are not needed.

LED lighting is becoming less expensive every day, but they are still a high price ticket for most of the jobs. Until then, use these tips, in order to get even more from your investment. 

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