LEDs are a simple invention with huge potential to change the lighting industry for the better. Don’t know much about them? Here are three big things you need to know to get your feet under you:
What Does LED Stand For?
LED stands for light-emitting diode.
A diode is an electrical device or component with two electrodes (an anode and a cathode) through which electricity flows - characteristically in only one direction (in through the anode and out through the cathode). Diodes are generally made from semiconductive materials such as silicon or selenium - substances that conduct electricity in some circumstances and not in others (e.g. at certain voltages, current levels, or light intensities).
How important is the parking lot at your building or facility? Hugely! A parking lot provides the means for tenants, clients, and visitors to access your buildings or business, but when is the last time your lot got an update? What about an update that also cut down on your monthly costs and made your organization more energy-efficient? We’re not talking about restriping the asphalt...we’re talking about replacing your lighting fixtures with LED pole lighting.
Stouch Lighting is happy to announce that we recently completed a LED conversion for RJ Waters and Associates, a commercial real estate development company based in Southeast Pennsylvania. Waters and Associates manages more than 2.4 million square feet of retail space in Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Delaware, and maintains relationships with more than 350 tenants. Waters and Associates is one of the premier commercial real estate development companies on the east coast, and they take great pride in maintaining properties for the benefit of tenants, consumers, and visitors alike. For this particular project, Stouch Lighting replaced the parking lot lighting at the Oak Springs Shopping Center in Warrenton, Virginia. Let’s learn more!
We wanted to take a minute to share a cool industry story we’re following that involves the internet of things, LEDs, and Europe. Got you interested? It’s definitely an initiative we thought worth sharing. So without any further delay here’s something game-changing to look for in the near future: 4G and LTE network capability on your street lights. According to LEDInside.com, the new LED light poles called “smart poles” are being brought to market in a joint effort by Philips Lighting and Ericsson. The technology combines LED lighting expertise from Philips with the “small cell,” “high-speed broadband” network capability from Ericsson. The design involves an integrated antenna and is driven by an expected increase in mobile device use. The companies are focusing on the European market but the first city to actually adopt the technology has been Los Angeles. If initial rollout is successful there’s little doubt you could see the new smart poles being adopted in other major metropolitan areas around the United States and the world.
LED lighting technology is fast replacing conventional lighting solutions, and for good reason, too. LEDs produce higher quality light, are more cost- and energy-efficient, and require far less maintenance than their conventional lighting counterparts (but more on all these benefits later). Like many things in life, the first step to solving a lighting problem is to acknowledge that there IS one. With that in mind, do any of these lighting problems sound familiar to you?
If you own or manage a building, warehouse, or other large facility, you really need to understand the benefits that indoor LED lighting can bring. We’ve previously discussed the benefits of LED parking lot lighting and outdoor LED lighting, but here we’ll focus on interior lighting for large facilities. Let’s get started!
LED lighting technology isn’t exactly a new thing, but there are still many industries and organizations that would benefit from learning a little more about these energy efficient lighting solutions. In this blog, we’ll discuss how indoor and outdoor LED lights can positively impact the aesthetic, efficiency, and financial bottom line for real estate organizations. We’ll also provide some helpful comparisons between conventional lighting solutions and LED lighting for real estate organizations.
Would you know an LED conversion if you saw one? What are the benefits of completing an LED retrofit anyway? What type of organization is best suited for the switch? Stouch Lighting is a manufacturer-neutral LED lighting distributor providing LED lighting solutions across a national footprint, and we wanted to showcase some of the projects we’ve recently completed in the greater Philadelphia area. In this way, you can learn a little about why LED technology outperforms conventional lighting in important ways, as well as understanding the significant benefits that come with a lighting retrofit. We’ll discuss three main metrics in which LED lighting solutions surpass the competition, and you’ll learn how other Philadelphia organizations have fared after conversion. Let’s get started!
When facility managers or owners are looking at how to save costs or cut down on overhead, lighting is a solution that is often overlooked. But this is an unfortunate circumstance; energy efficient lighting solutions can help an organization decrease energy consumption and maintenance costs and provide better lighting. This becomes especially true in commercial, industrial, real estate, and other applications where literally thousands of bulbs are in use every single day. Let’s discuss some of the tools currently on the market that can help facility managers and owners enhance their current lighting solution and meet their consumption, maintenance, and quality goals.
For decades, fluorescent tubes have been a longstanding fixture in many offices, classrooms, warehouses, and other facilities. While they do a fine job providing light (generally, the stereotypical harsh cubicle office glare), lighting technology has rapidly advanced in the intervening decades to provide energy efficient lighting solutions that virtually all facilities should consider. LED lighting is a viable, common sense replacement for fluorescent lamps, so let’s examine the differences between fluorescent and LED lighting solutions.
LED lighting technology is fast replacing other types of legacy bulbs, and it’s time for commercial and other types of organizations to notice. LEDs last longer, provide better light, cost less to maintain, and consume much less energy than legacy lighting fixtures. Imagine a shopping center that replaced its parking lot or exterior lighting, without even touching the interior lights...the energy and financial savings alone would be enough to finance a LED retrofit for the interior! Let’s take a look at some different applications in which commercial LED lighting has made a world of difference.
Stouch Lighting is happy to share a recent project in which we were able to meet multiple objectives for a client. M&T Bank in Wilmington, Delaware has an associated parking garage that is used 24 hours a day, and it was sorely in need of a lighting update. Stouch Lighting devised energy efficient lighting solutions that reduced M&T's consumption, as well as provided higher quality lighting for users. Let's learn a little more about how to improve parking garage lighting!
If you own or manage a parking lot, you need to consider an LED retrofit if you have legacy lighting. Whether you represent a school or university, municipality, real estate organization, or if you’re a facility manager or building owner, converting to LED lighting can have tangible benefits for your organization. Updating your parking lot lighting has great potential to improve the overall look of your space, save you money, and provide higher quality lighting. LED lighting for your parking lots are basically a one-stop shop for your organization to achieve all these benchmarks.
A cursory search on the internet will quickly reveal that LED lighting technology is fast becoming more popular - and for good reason, too. Whether you’re looking to change bulbs in your home, or completely retrofit the exterior and interior lighting of a large office building, exterior LED lighting is likely the most appropriate lighting solution. An LED retrofit is particularly suited to three types of organization as well: educational facilities, municipalities, and real estate organizations. Let’s examine why each vertical is a good candidate for exterior LED lighting, and then discuss the universal benefits of LED lighting.
Industrial facilities consume a tremendous amount of energy. Accordingly, and as you might expect, these buildings are expensive to operate. Keeping the lights on is a significant part of your facility’s cost of operations, and you may be consuming and paying for much more than you need to if you’re using conventional lighting fixtures. Fortunately, there has never been a better time to look for new energy efficient lighting solutions. LEDs are changing the landscape and are available in all of the most commonly used fixtures in commercial buildings.
One of the little things you might not be thinking about (but your certified lighting professional should be) is the concept of Effective Projected Area (EPA). EPA is an important consideration when you retrofit your outdoor lighting fixtures but it doesn’t represent what you might think when you first hear it. Effective Projected Area sounds like the amount of light projected onto the ground (or target area) but this is actually NOT the case. Nor is it the Environmental Protection Agency (perhaps more obvious). The Effective Projected Area is a two-dimensional projection of a three-dimensional object. Think of it like the object’s shadow. Since it is a two-dimensional area, the Effective Projected Area is measured in square feet (ft2).
One of the most common lights used to illuminate large buildings like warehouses, schools, and corporate offices over the last several decades has been the linear fluorescent tube. Many facilities are already configured with recessed troffers that fit the standard dimensions for linear fluorescent lights (T5, T8, and T12 bulbs being the most common fluorescent bulbs while other options like T2, T4, and T6 are also relatively available).
Ever wonder if you should purchase lighting from a general contractor, a distributor, or manufacturer-direct? There are a lot of options to source lighting product for your facility. But which one is the best? Generally the answer varies depending on the particulars of your situation. Here’s a quick look at the three most common approaches:
1. Purchase Commercial Lighting Through Your General Contractor
You can delegate the responsibility for energy efficient lighting solutions to your general contractor. Perhaps they have a particular distributor that they work with (whether it be national, regional, or local). Or they might put the lighting portion of the contract out to bid with a number of different distributors. In either case, the management responsibility falls to your single point of contact (the GC). The GC will manage change orders, inventory, and invoicing. You’re likely to pay more for the service but you’ll have less to worry about if pricing isn’t the most critical factor under consideration.
LED lighting has a number of advantages in general when compared to conventional lighting. While LEDs provide improved energy and maintenance efficienciesas well as a better quality light, there are a few things they do for warehouses and large, open facilities in particular that most people don’t necessarily realize. Much of this has to do with the technological differences between LED lights and conventional lighting. Read the links below for a specific, issue-by-issue comparison of LEDs versus typical warehouse lights like fluorescents and metal halides (a type of HID bulb). Otherwise, focus on the big three items below where some key LED features help them to achieve large advantages when it comes to large warehouse lighting and lighting for sports complexes.
Here are the top-15 advantages of Light Emitting Diode (LED) lighting technology. They are listed sequentially based on their importance and starting with the most important item:
1. LED Light Lifespan:
Easily the most significant advantage of LEDs when compared to traditional lighting solutions is the long lifespan. The average LED lasts 50,000 operating hours to 100,000 operating hours or more. That is 2-4 times as long as most fluorescent, metal halide, and even sodium vapor lights. It is more than 40 times as long as the average incandescent bulb.
Have you been thinking about an LED retrofit for your facility or property? Not sure how to go about it? You came to the right place. Here’s a primer on getting your facility up to date with modern lighting.
Stouch Lighting is pleased to announce the completion of an LED retrofit for the West Chester Area School District. The project entailed improving the exterior lighting quality and decreasing the energy consumption associated with two different Middle Schools (E.N. Pierce and G.A. Stetson Middle School). They also wanted a solution that would reduce the time that their existing maintenance employees would have to spend maintaining and repairing the exterior lighting system. The solution involved the replacement of legacy metal halide parking lot fixtures with new, higher efficiency LEDs. The new lights are expected to reduce the school district’s energy costs by 66% (74,390 kWh per annum) which equates to $8,926 of annual savings. They were also able to save approximately $6,893 on annual maintenance costs and qualified for an energy efficiency rebate of $5,095. The combined savings were estimated to be $20,915 ($15,820 of which is expected to be an annually recurring savings amount). Stouch lighting was also able to drastically improve light levels by specifying the appropriate light distribution patterns throughout the parking facilities and installing two different types of high efficiency LED lights. Perhaps the most noticeable difference is the higher quality white light provided by LEDs.
Stouch Lighting is pleased to announce the completion of an LED retrofit for Philadelphia’s Franklin Institute. The Franklin Institute is a science museum and related education and research center based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Stouch Lighting was recently enlisted to reduce the energy consumption associated with the Institute’s existing parking garage lighting as well as to implement technology designed to adapt lighting levels to the variable occupancy rates within the different levels of the garage. The solution involved the replacement of legacy High Intensity Discharge (HID) canopy lights and HID recessed fixtures with more energy efficient, higher performing LED lights. The new lights are expected to reduce the company’s energy costs by 66% (264,902 kWh per annum) which equates to $31,788 of annual savings. They were also able to save approximately $7,674 on annual maintenance costs and reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by nearly a million pounds annually. The combined annual savings were estimated to be $39,462. Stouch lighting was also able to drastically improve light levels by specifying appropriate light distribution patterns throughout the garage and installing three different types of high efficiency LED lights. Perhaps the most noticeable difference is the increased light levels and the absence of blind spots (areas not receiving light) in the garage.
LED Lighting For The Outdoors and Building Exteriors
LED lighting is fast becoming the best solution for a wide variety of outdoor lighting applications. The reasons are simple: LEDs are the most energy efficient light on the market by far, they have the longest lifespan (and associated product warranties) by 2-10 times over the nearest competing technology, and they produce a very high quality light with a wide range of characteristics. They are small, steady-state lights which means they don’t present the breaking or recycling issues common with legacy lighting technology. Perhaps the only downside is that they’re not the cheapest light on the market. That said, the price continues to come down and a smart investor will recognize right away that a lifespan that could be an order of magnitude (10 times) longer than a traditional bulb is easily worth the investment. You get what you pay for after all.
Most of the focus on LED lights is on energy efficiency. Unfortunately that leaves two of the most relevant improvements (lighting quality and reduced maintenance liability) severely underappreciated. The focus of this discussion is on lighting quality. For a full discussion of the maintenance efficiencies achieved with LED lighting read here.
Stouch Lighting is pleased to announce the completion of an LED retrofit for Korman Commercial Properties and the parking lot lighting at Gray’s Ferry Shopping Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Korman Commercial Properties manages the shopping center with relatively fixed costs and wanted to upgrade their existing High Pressure Sodium (HPS) parking lot lighting to provide an improvement in the light levels as well as to reduce the energy consumption for the exterior lighting at the complex. Low energy consumption, high performance LED lighting helped them to achieve both goals. The new lights are expected to reduce the company’s energy costs by 74% (112,268 kWh per annum) which equates to nearly $10,000 of annual savings. They were also able to save approximately $3,615 on annual maintenance costs and qualified for a $3,840 rebate for making the improvements. The combined savings were estimated to be $20,927 ($17,087 of which is a recurring annual savings).
Stouch Lighting is pleased to announce completion of an LED retrofit for Neumann University in Aston, Pennsylvania. Neumann University was looking for a comprehensive turnkey lighting solution to reduce energy costs and improve light levels for the exterior lighting throughout the entire campus. Major updates include street lighting on campus, exterior lighting surrounding buildings and illuminating high traffic common areas, and parking lot lighting.
Ever wonder what’s better: High Pressure Sodium lights (and the related Low Pressure Sodium lights) or Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)? Well here’s a head-to-head comparison of the two followed by an in-depth discussion of each technology in turn.
High Pressure Sodium (HPS) vs Light Emitting Diode (LED) Comparison:
Retrofitting your current lighting with an energy efficient LED solution can save you up to 80% in annual (recurring) energy costs. The savings are so significant that you can finance the replacement of your legacy lighting with the cost savings you will realize from retrofitting your facilities with modern LED technology. When evaluating energy savings from advanced LED lights it’s important to understand energy terminology, financing options to ensure cash flow positive LED conversions, and to see the results from past projects where LED lighting has been successfully implemented in place of legacy solutions like fluorescent, incandescent, high pressure sodium, mercury vapor, or metal halide lighting. We’ll cover all three instances in sequence to give a comprehensive discussion of the energy efficiency advantages available with LED lighting.
The Basics: Energy In Terms Of Electricity
The first thing you need to understand is what exactly energy is in terms of lighting. There are four basic measures you need to be aware of:
As you might have noticed when you go to an evening baseball game, metal halide (MH) lamps do not achieve their full light output immediately after starting. This is why stadiums typically turn them on in advance of nightfall when it’s not quite dark enough to actually require their light. According to the Lighting Research Institute at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute:
LED lights are changing the landscape for real estate organizations, municipalities, large corporations, educational facilities, and small businesses looking to improve their light quality while simultaneously trying to minimize their energy and maintenance expenses. Here are five common applications where a thorough LED retrofit or conversion will pay you back sooner than you think:
LED Lighting For Parking Lots
Parking lots are a relevant lighting concern for real estate organizations, commercial property managers, government and municipalities, as well as large corporations like hospitals and universities. Major concerns include providing enough light to prevent safety incidences at night, minimizing the relatively fixed costs of operating light fixtures during the evening hours, and, to the extent that it is possible, preventing emerging maintenance costs associated with replacement lights and the labor required to change out failed components. Here is a look at the vastly improved lighting quality at the Kevon One Office Center in Pennsauken, NJ.
I was recently reading anarticle in Forbes stating what we have been telling sports facility managers for years: you will save a lot of money by switching your lighting to state-of-the-art Light Emitting Diode technology. For a long time this was thought to be impossible but now it seems we’re finally moving past the early adopter phase of the technology adaptation curve. Hundreds of sports teams across the country are retrofitting their stadiums with LED lights. And they’re saving bundles of money by making the switch.
The Miami Dolphins have two of the world's largest HD LED Displays. Read More.
Ever wonder what’s better: Fluorescent lights (including Compact Fluorescent Lights or CFLs) or Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs)? Well here’s a head-to-head comparison of the two followed by an in-depth discussion of each technology in turn.
Ever wonder what’s better: High Intensity Discharge (HID) lights or Light Emitting Diodes (led lighting)? Well here’s a head-to-head comparison of the two followed by an in-depth discussion of each technology in turn.
If you’ve spent any time on our blog lately, you know that we’re excited about LED lighting and how it can positively impact different organizations. Three improvements that LEDs can offer to virtually any business or building are the following:
Retrofitting your current lighting with an energy efficient LED solution can save you up to 80% in your annual lighting energy costs. The savings are so significant that you can finance the replacement with the energy cost savings you will realize as a result.
When considering lighting for your real estate project there are a few basic measures you need to be aware of for the lights themselves. Here are the big three:
1. Color Rendering Index (CRI): CRI is a measurement of a light’s ability to reveal the actual color of objects as compared to an ideal light source (natural light). High CRI lights will evidence colors much better than low CRI lights.Read More
If you’re new to the lighting industry, or if you're a business owner looking for energy efficient lighting solutions, you may have come across some terms that might not be entirely familiar. In a previous blog, we discussed color rendering index, color temperature, and foot-candle.
It’s all about high quality lighting! Or is it? Well one thing’s for sure...if it is, then there are three things you need to understand: CRI, CCT, and foot-candle. These are the three most relevant measures of a high or low quality light. CRI stands for Color Rendering Index (CRI) while CCT stands for Correlated Color Temperature (known simply as Color Temperature for many lights). A Foot-Candle is a measurement that describes the total amount of light hitting your target area. Let’s talk about all three measures one at a time so you can better understand how they describe the quality of the lights you’re choosing between, and how they can help you with energy efficient lighting solutions.