Dec 8, 2016: The most common issue with commercial lighting systems is that they use too much energy, and don’t provide enough light while at it. This issue is common for those businesses and buildings that have technologies such as metal halide, high pressure sodium, and even fluorescent lights in place.
The conversion to LED by itself will allow you to reduce your energy consumption by all the way up to 75%, which is a lot of energy savings when you talk about per year savings. This direct savings allows companies to realize a return on investment, which makes it worthwhile (not including the other benefits that LED fixtures have to offer).
But when we start to get down to LED, and the efficiency between LEDs, this is where you can really “make or break” your investment in the technology. Why is this so? Because not every LED is made the same, and since there are so many suppliers in the commercial LED lighting space, you will get different prices and different efficiencies everywhere you go.
The main point of this article is going to be this; if you plan on upgrading to LED in your warehouse, factory, office, or other commercial place, why settle for just any LED from anyone? Why not find the fixture that will give you the most for your money, which you will find through its efficiency.
Think about this, would you rather buy a LED fixture that runs at 150 watts or 200 watts, but they both output the same amount of light? The answer is obvious, you would choose the 150W light because it outputs the same amount of light, with less wattage.
To break this down even further, let’s go over an example. Let’s say you you have a ceiling which is 30 feet tall, this would call for a high bay fixture since its ceiling is in the range of 20 to 40 feet high. For this project, say you need 20 fixtures outputting each at 20,000 lumens. One company offers a high bay light that can output at 20,000 lumens per fixture, using up 220 watts per light. The next company can offer a similar high bay fixture that outputs the same amount of light, but uses 190 watts. Which one is the better option?
Without considering price of each one, the second option that uses 190 watts is the clear winner. The reason being is simple, it’s more efficient.
How do we determine efficiency? With something called lumens per watts. The more lumens per watt a given fixture has, the more efficient it is than a comparable fixture that outputs at less lumens / watt.
Note: DLC qualified products that are premium are much more efficient than those listed under standard. So while standard is better than nothing, premium DLC qualified wins overall when it comes to a fixtures efficiency.
Anyways, like in the example above, the 220 watt fixture outputs at around 91 lumens per watt (rounded). Whereas the 190 watt fixture runs at about 105 lumens / watt (rounded). This is the single most important factor that you need to look at when comparing lights for your commercial needs. This breaks it down, eliminates guesswork, and tells you straight forward which fixture is most efficient.
The best part is, which makes your decision a whole lot easier; sometimes the less efficient fixture is MORE expensive. This makes the choice much more obvious even from a glance.
But why is this all important? For one reason–your ROI.
Think about this, why would you buy a fixture that is less efficient unless it was overall going to cost you less to purchase and run over its estimated lifespan?
Today’s marketplace drives prices to be competitive, and it’s up to businesses and decision makers to be educated on which fixtures are more efficient, and how they are priced. If you could, and you can, find a fixture that outputs at more lumens / watt and was the same price as another less efficiency light (or even cheaper), wouldn’t it be an easy choice?
After reading this, yes it would be an easy choice. The issue is, most people don’t consider this efficiency factor and are blinded by the fact that “as long as it’s better than what I have now, I don’t care.” Don’t you think that if you are willing to make the upgrade, you’d want the most efficient fixture that will save you more money, and pay you back more?
Don’t settle for the first fixture you lay your eyes on. Instead, find 5-8 different companies, compare their efficiency and prices, and then decide based on that. Don’t just compare your current lights to new ones, compare the new one with each other. It will save you and pay you back much more over time by going with the best of the best.