If the lights in your business are on their way out, making a change to your ballasts or bulbs may offer you tremendous opportunity. There’s a lot to consider when selecting the right ballast and bulb combination, however, and the decision you make today will affect your business for years to come.
There’s more to choosing lighting than replacing that faulty ballast.
The right lighting can result in substantial savings on your monthly energy costs, of which lighting accounts for nearly 35 percent. The right lighting can also reduce maintenance needs, improve productivity, and reduce your carbon footprint.
Watts measure the amount of energy required to light a bulb. Today, however, bulbs are measured in lumens, or the amount of visible light produced. Why? It all boils down to efficiency. Opting for ballast and bulb combinations that are more efficient than yesterday’s incandescents offer a superior return on investment.
- Twice as efficient as incandescents.
- Commonly used for outdoor applications such as stadium and security lighting.
- Use 1/5 to 1/3 as much electricity as incandescents.
- Last 10 times longer.
- The most commonly used form of commercial lighting.
- Opting for a newer, electronic ballast provides more efficient, flicker-free operation than magnetic predecessors.
- Today’s T8 systems far surpass yesterday’s T12 systems in efficiency.
- T5 systems may offer a suitable replacement for HID/Metal halides.
CFL (Compact Fluorescent Light)
- Miniature version of fluorescents.
- Quick and easy energy saving replacement for incandescents in standard light sockets.
- 3-5 times more efficient than incandescents.
- Lasts 20 times longer.
- Produce large quantities of very bright light for warehouse and industrial applications.
- Purchasing/installing specially designed reduced wattage metal halide lamps may provide sufficient lighting while reducing energy consumption.
LED (Light Emitting Diodes)
- Use 75 percent less energy than incandescents.
- Lasts 35-50 times longer.
Going beyond the bulb…
There’s more to upgrading your lighting than simple bulb and ballast replacement, however. According to the SBA (Small Business Association), technology plus effective design equals performance and energy savings. Screwing in more efficient bulbs are a great start, but not enough if you want the whole package. Ballast selection and lighting design are essential to getting the most bang for your lighting buck. For this, you’ll need the help of a Mr. Electric® lighting professional to coordinate:
Ballast or fixture selection
Finding the most efficient technology to meet your application needs and/or style.
Ballast and fixture placement
Including taking into consideration ceiling height, spacing, glare, light distribution, and task plane height.
Overall appearance and brightness
Including taking into account room finishes – paint colors and types that will improve lighting quality.
From safety considerations to integration with other building systems
Looking for a little more control and savings? You may want..
- Occupancy sensors
- Vacancy sensors
- Bi-level switches
- Daylight sensors
- Intelligent lighting control systems