Facts Not Fiction / by CZ Energy Management

    As we see more and more commercial LED lighting up-grades being installed for parking lots, we also see serious mistakes.

    Car Lots: We do not know if it is low cost or just cheap spending that is driving business owners to install poor grade LED equipment. Or it could be the installing company simply does not understand light on the ground, light spread, reflective light! Rarely do we see complete lighting evaluations being conducted. What we do see is building owners now purchasing whatever is available on the internet or suggested by their electricians and not lighting experts. Not all LED fixtures are created equal! Diodes "chips", optics, color, drivers, wattage's & voltage. Light measurements before and after.

    As more and more LED equipment being available on the market prices have declined. Also quality has dropped. Our company prides ourselves on how much light we can provide to the customer, meaning more light on the ground and not in the air.

    As existing HID 1000 watt is common for parking lots. When the bulb was new it would provide approx 50 foot candles from 20 feet off the ground. In ever case we always exceed the existing foot candles with our retro fit LEDs 285 watt. An existing 1000 watt HID will decline in less than a year, was 50 foot candles and one year later 32. Going from bright 5000 K to yellow 3500 K.

 

     The next thing we see as we drive past these car lots at night is low light. This is after the install of new LEDs. This is giving LEDs a bad rap. The customer doesn't know because they have placed there trust into the hands of there best friend "the electrician". We hear it all the time from the owner. I have my own electrical contractor! In other words they do not need a professional building analyst that has the tools and knowledge. If only business owners would listen and take a look at our LED lighting installs before making that decision, then perhaps less mistakes would not be made. I've never met more closed minded business owners in my life until I moved to the Pacific Northwest.

    I think it is great that business owners are spending money to up-grade to LEDs and reduce energy usage. However I could turn down my thermostat for heating and save money too. But would I be comfortable? My point is, when designed correctly the owner should receive the best light possible and benefit by saving energy. This means maximum lumen s with spread of light on the ground. Lets don't forget long lasting chips and drivers. Example: CREE chips were the best on the market a few years ago. However as we discovered other manufactures have designed even better products today. Smaller chips, less heat, better optics.

    If I needed electrical work done yes I would call an electrician. However if I needed professional lighting study done I would call a professional in that field.

    Car lots: Need security meaning the more light they have the less likely vandalism would take place. Car lots need for there lots to be bright so potential clients can see the colors or styles. Example: Marketing is the driving point of any product. If you the customer was driving down the street and saw two car lots on each side of the street. If one lot was dimly lit and the other was very bright, I guaranty you would pull into the lot that was brighter.