Wall pack lights and building lights are terms that describe the outdoor lighting that is commonly mounted on the exterior walls of buildings. This type of exterior lighting is generally used to provide illumination to areas for vehicles and pedestrians use, as well as for security purposes. There are three main issues surrounding conventional wall pack lighting, these issues are: high energy costs, frequent maintenance, and lighting performance concerns.
Below is a closer look into each one of these issues:
Common high intensity discharge (HID) lamp wattages used for wall pack lighting range from 70 watts to 400 watts. The higher the wattage the higher the light output. The function of the area being illuminated, combined with the quantity, spacing, and mounting height plays a role in existing wattages utilized. A 175w or 250w HID fixture (very common wattages for wall pack light fixtures) can cost up to $91 in addition to $131 to operate per lamp, per year, in electricity alone.
In addition to the energy cost associated with HID wall pack lights, maintenance costs are often a big concern for those managing outdoor lighting fixtures. In many cases these lights are mounted 15 feet in the air or higher so changing out a lamp necessitates a lift or bucket truck. Many facilities don’t own their own lift, so a contractor needs to be hired to complete the work. These costs can really add up over time. For example, it can easily cost up to $4,459 in labor and material to maintain a single wall pack light fixture over the course of three years.
Depending on the type of HID lamp your facility utilizes, the performance characteristics of your wall pack lighting can vary significantly. For example, if you are using metal halide lamps you may see light that is “whiter,” but these types of lamps tend to have accelerated lumen degradation, meaning the light output of the lamps decrease quickly after initial install, and as a result the overall lifetime of the lamp decreases (we have all seen those building light fixtures that have “pink” lamps that are barely providing any lighting on the ground). If you are using high pressure sodium you may see longer “useful” life as these lamps see less lumen degradation than metal halide, but their fuel structure produces a very “orange” light with a very low CRI (color rendering index). So basically you trade a longer life for a poorer quality light, in regards to visual perspective.
The economic and lighting performance issues should be a motivator to consider LED lighting for your facility. The return on investment calculation will vary for each facility, however LED fixtures often pay for themselves in a short period of time. To learn more about an LED solution for your facility, contact us, we look forward to working with you and your team.