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Jeff Koeppel column: Are LED lighting conversions good for business?

Written by Jeff Koeppel
May 17, 2014


With the economy still in recovery mode, business owners continue to look for ways to cut costs wherever possible. For many businesses, transitioning from antiquated lighting modalities can be an attractive and cost-saving alternative. There are real and easily quantifiable cost-saving opportunities when it comes to alternatives to traditional lighting sources.

Business owners across all industries seeking strategies to reduce costs and save money have found conversions to LED lighting a very attractive route; and with the LED market having become even more

affordable in recent months, there continues to be significant spikes in the popularity of switching to LED lighting.

Q Energy Savings – Most businesses want to convert the entire site at once in order to achieve ROI within two to three years.

Next-generation ultra efficient LED only draw up to one-third of what traditional light fixtures draw, which equates to a substantial amount of business and/or consumer savings without needing to alter or upgrade existing electrical panels. Since LED lights project more uniformly, produce a brighter light, and reduce hot spots, it may only take five LED fixtures as opposed to the 10 original lighting fixtures, thus reducing energy costs even further. 

Q Uniformity – With the advanced capabilities offered with LED lights, the issue of hot spots can be dramatically reduced.  LED lighting creates uniformity in spread across the entire site, facilitating attractive lighting levels across a large area.

The color temperature options also aid in creating a seamless look when blending LED lighting on site or wanting to keep uniformity within a group of buildings.

Since aesthetics plays a huge role with consumers, this will make locations more inviting. Additionally, for security purposes, LED light can help improve video camera images and more accurate color brightness, therefore contributing to the safety of customers and employees; even enhancing facial recognition capabilities.

Q Maintenance Savings – Warranties and rebate savings provide immediate and eventual benefits of LED.  Plus, the standard 5-year full warranty options can result in huge cost savings for businesses implementing mobile maintenance procedures. 

Each time mobile maintenance is dispatched to a site for repairs or outages, the client is typically paying a per site fee for their physical presence on site.  The additional labor involved to repair the issue is added on top of the site assessment costs. 

If a business owner can rely on the LED manufacturer to provide full parts and labor warranties for up to five years on fixtures used on their sites, this can drastically reduce the mobile maintenance costs to visit the site and the fixture costs that are needed to repair or replace an existing light source.

Q Optic Control – LED conversions offer a lot more control within the actual optic of the lighting fixtures. There are those cases where a business is next to a residential area and lighting cannot cross property lines. LED provides the advantage to companies in this situation and allows them to change optics within the fixture through the use of an individual chip to provide backlight control and eliminate light trespass from occurring.

This is a convenience for businesses in providing sufficient lighting on their site to provide a secure and safe location without any light spillover occurring on neighboring properties.

So while traditional lighting fixtures would need a shield on the fixture to control where the light was projected, LED lights offer more direct control through the use of individual chips.  This can be especially useful for financial institutions and parking lots near residential areas.

With the rapidly growing demand for LED retrofits in existing buildings, LED lighting can also help rebrand a site and give it a new, inviting look. This in turn can increase foot traffic and customer interaction.

Implementing LED conversions for the maintenance and energy savings, is a great start, however, in doing so a business can also avoid making future extensive capital expenditures on repair, maintenance and replacement parts long-term.

About the Author
Jeff Koeppel, Managing Partner of K & B Electric LLC, an Electrical Contractor & Lighting Contractor, can be reached at (920) 655-3676, or service@kbelectriccompany.com

Source:  Green Bay Press-Gazette

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