LED lighting is nothing new and by now most people understand that the light-emitting diode has an impressive lifespan, but they may not know what to consider when choosing them. While choosing incandescent bulbs is pretty easy for most people, selecting LED can be different.
Before purchasing LED solutions, get accustomed to the term “lumens”. With incandescent bulbs there is a relationship between watts drawn and brightness of the light; however, watts with LED’s are not a good indication of how bright the bulb will be. An LED is measured in lumens so that is what you need to consider when getting ready to purchase the lights. Just to put it in perspective, an LED with brightness that is comparable to a 60W incandescent is only 8-10 watts. Getting a sense of the brightness you require first can save you a lot of time and aggravation later.
Once you have a good idea of what you are looking for in terms of lumens, you need to think about color. Some cheaper brands of LED only provide lights in cool blue white, which can be poor quality light and may not serve your particular needs. Warm white colors may be needed in some areas, especially if you are running a business that requires a rich feel or a more relaxed vibe. There is a color-rendering index (CRI) for LED’s. If you operate a retail outlet and use low CRI you just might have customers complaining that they can’t really tell what the color of the product is. The best way to explain CRI is that it is a measure of a light source’s ability to show the colors of objects realistically or naturally. As a matter of reference, a CRI of 100 is comparable to natural sunlight, which is the maximum value. You can find a color-rendering index online.
LED’s have come a long way. They can be made available for high bay and production situations, such as manufacturing plants. While the initial investment of a retrofit can be costly for some companies, the savings in energy soon out-weigh the expense. Additionally, there are cost savings associated with less maintenance. It is also worth considering that dimming or turning fixtures off can lower energy use further. There are solutions that even allow this to happen remotely. LED high-bay lighting systems are known to be durable. Companies can use this kind of lighting for a long period of time. Many products last well over 100,000 hours without any need for maintenance or replacement.
Some businesses can have different needs season-to-season. For example collections change so if you are managing a clothing chain you might want to think about LED’s that allow for color temperature adjustment. Lighting up winter clothing in cold white light and then lighting summer outfits in warm white light with the same system sure makes things easier and less expensive than switching out lights every few months.
If you are thinking about LED solutions for a refrigeration system, you might want to look at products that remain hidden in the fridge so that glare and light spill are reduced. In the case of a store fridge, hidden LED’s can even make aisles look larger.
The bottom line is, not all LED’s are alike so if you install the wrong LED for your purposes, you can end up being disappointed. When the right LED’s are installed, the benefits are numerous, including lower energy costs, better product presentation, lower maintenance/replacement needs, and enhanced control of lighting.