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How to Conduct a Parking Lot Lighting Audit for Maximum Efficiency

Is your parking lot lighting inefficient, poorly maintained, or creating safety concerns? 

A parking lot lighting audit is the first step to identifying problem areas and making informed decisions about upgrades that improve both efficiency and the user experience.  Let's dive into how to conduct a simple audit yourself.


Why Conduct a Lighting Audit?

Parking Lot Lighting Audit | Stouch Lighting

A parking lot lighting audit is a crucial step in ensuring your space is safe, efficient, and visually appealing.  

Here are the key reasons to perform an audit:

  • Save Money: Outdated fixtures and inefficient lighting controls can lead to significant energy waste. An audit pinpoints these areas, allowing for upgrades that dramatically lower your operating costs.
  • Enhance Safety: A well-lit parking lot is essential for deterring crime and preventing accidents. Audits uncover dark spots, uneven lighting distribution, and other potential safety hazards.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Many areas have local ordinances or safety guidelines regarding parking lot lighting. An audit ensures your lot meets these standards, avoiding potential fines or liability issues.
  • Boost Property Appeal: First impressions matter. A well-lit, inviting parking area attracts customers and tenants while enhancing your property's overall image.


Equipment You'll Need for a Lighting Audit

Fortunately, you don't need an arsenal of complex tools to perform a basic lighting audit.  We’ll discuss  the essential equipment needed to conduct your audit.

Light Meter | Stouch Lighting

A light meter, also called a footcandle meter, measures light levels in a given area. You can often rent these or find them at an affordable price.

A simple sketch or diagram of your parking lot layout is invaluable. Include key features like walkways, entrances, and building locations.

You'll need a notebook/tablet  to record your light measurements and any notable observations about the condition of your lighting system.

Lastly, it’s always best to consult with a professional like Stouch Lighting to provide you with the most in-depth and accurate audit/information possible about your parking lot lighting.


Evaluating Your Parking Lot Lighting

Conducting a lighting audit in a parking lot is crucial to ensuring optimal lighting efficiency, safety, and energy cost reduction

Here's a step-by-step guide on how to perform an effective lighting audit:

  1. Set Clear Objectives

Before beginning the audit, determine what you aim to achieve. This could include reducing energy consumption, improving light quality, or updating outdated systems. Setting clear goals will guide the audit process and decision-making​.

  1. Equipment and Preparation

Gather the necessary tools for your audit, which should include what we listed above, and most importantly a light meter to assess the existing light levels. 

Prepare an audit form or worksheet to document important information like the type and condition of each fixture, which you can record in your notebook/tablet.​.

  1. Site Walkthrough

Conduct a thorough walkthrough of your parking lot. This includes mapping all lighting fixtures and noting their conditions. Check for areas that may need more lighting and identify any fixtures that are underperforming or are inefficient​​.

  1. Measure Light Levels

Use a light meter to take readings of the current light levels throughout the parking lot.

It's important to measure light levels in foot candles to ensure they meet the necessary standards for safety and functionality. Record these readings systematically across the area to evaluate both the intensity and uniformity of the lighting​.

  1. Assess Fixture and Bulb Types

Identify the types of fixtures and bulbs used in the parking area. Check if they align with your energy efficiency goals or if they need upgrading

Before & After Lighting Audit | Stouch Lighting

This step may require consulting with a maintenance person or lighting installer like Stouch Lighting to understand the specifics of your existing lighting setup.

  1. Calculate Energy Usage

From your collected data, calculate the total wattage used by your lighting fixtures and convert this into kilowatts. Then, estimate the cost of lighting per night by considering the kilowatts used and the number of hours the lights are operational.

This will help you identify potential savings from upgrading to more efficient lighting solutions​​.

LED Lighting ROI | Stouch Lighting

  1. Evaluate and Plan Improvements

Based on your findings, develop a plan to address any deficiencies in the lighting system. 

This could involve replacing old or inefficient lamps, adjusting the placement of light fixtures to eliminate dark spots, or installing new technologies like LED lighting that offer longer lifespans and better energy efficiency​.

  1. Consult with Professionals

If the audit reveals significant issues or if you're planning a major overhaul, it may be beneficial to consult with lighting professionals

They can provide expertise in selecting the right fixtures, designing an optimal layout, and ensuring that all lighting meets regulatory standards and enhances safety​.

By following these steps, you can conduct a comprehensive lighting audit of your parking lot, leading to a more efficient, safe, and cost-effective lighting setup.


What are the Next Steps

If you're considering improving your parking lot lighting but unsure where to start, Stouch Lighting is here to help. As lighting professionals with extensive experience, we specialize in optimizing lighting systems to meet your specific needs

We can guide you through a detailed audit and recommend the best energy-efficient technologies that align with your goals.

Take the first step towards a well-lit, secure, and energy-efficient parking area with Stouch Lighting, where your vision and our expertise light up possibilities.


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