If you’ve been thinking about converting your older, less efficient fluorescent or incandescent lighting to the new, energy efficient light-emitting diode (LED) lights, you’re not alone. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, between 2012 and 2014, LED installations increased in all applications, quadrupling to 215 million units.
The Benefits Are Clear
LEDs are becoming increasingly popular, and with good reason. As compared to other lighting sources, LEDs are:
- Highly efficient and use up to 80% less energy
- Long-lasting with a useful life of 50,000 hours or more
- Mercury-free for smaller impact to the environment
- Now priced lower than ever before
It has been estimated that over the next two decades, widespread use of LEDs could save the U.S. $250 billion in energy costs, reduce electricity consumption for lighting by nearly 50 percent and avoid 1,800 million metric tons of carbon emissions. That’s great news both financially and environmentally!
Why Now? The Price is Right!
The biggest reason to consider LED lighting now is because of the lower price. It used to be that LED lights were significantly more expensive than other lighting options, but that’s no longer true. They are more affordable than ever, which sets the stage for a quicker ROI, with some users finding LED lighting paying off in as little as one to two years. Not only that, but working with a seasoned lighting professional can help you locate and take advantage of incentives and rebates from your local power company, which can further lower costs.
Tips for Upgrading to LED Lighting
If you’re thinking about making the move to LED lighting in your commercial space or residence, there are some things to consider.
First, find a reputable lighting partner. LED bulbs are often manufactured in China and other countries where there aren’t many regulations or oversight. Quality and pricing can vary widely. A good lighting dealer has built solid connections with the manufacturers enabling him or her to source high quality lighting at a good price.
Second, create a plan. Doing due diligence and making a detailed plan and schedule to replace or upgrade your lighting will ensure you have a successful switch. Note that some new fixtures may be needed to accommodate the new bulbs. Your lighting partner will be able to help you schedule out your true costs as well as calculate your expected break-even point.
Third, act now to start realizing savings in energy costs as well as to take advantage of rebates and incentives from your local energy company. There are many cost savings programs out there now, but some of them may expire at the end of the year. If you’re planning to upgrade anyway, be sure to check out the current incentives and act in time to qualify. Check out our last blog post for info about how to find local and federal incentives.
Fluorescent Lighting is on the Way Out
Although vintage incandescent light bulbs are enjoying a slight resurgence, traditional fluorescent lighting is losing ground.
Long a staple of commercial lighting, fluorescent lights boomed in popularity after their introduction in the 1930s and offered far superior lamp light and energy efficiency than incandescent lights. However, the irritating buzzing and flashing of fluorescent bulbs may finally be going the way of the dodo bird as LED lights begin to replace fluorescents much like fluorescents replaced incandescents.
In fact, T12 lamps already are being phased out by regulations and have seen a 39 percent year-over-year decrease. T8 lamps saw a decline of 21.7 percent, which is less severe, but still telling. As more people realize the benefits of LED lighting, this trend seems poised to continue.
LED Lighting Keeps Getting Better
Since 2000, the U.S. Department of Energy has been funding R&D in solid-state lighting, and many new technologies and products have emerged as a result. Entrepreneurs have been quick to jump on these improvements, which has encouraged even more innovations.
One of the biggest commercial lighting trends of 2017 is connected lighting, which allows users to control their lighting remotely from a Smartphone or computer. LED lights are a great match for this technology, and often the upgrades go hand-in-hand or one brings about the other.
If you’re thinking of upgrading your commercial or residential lighting to LED or to offer connectivity, Chuck Welegala at Heartland Light Bulbs can help you find the perfect lighting and fixtures to meet your needs at a great price. He can help guide architects, contractors, facilities managers, interior designers and even consumers through the process toward affordable and energy efficient lighting. Contact him today at firstname.lastname@example.org or 866-639-6574. Also, follow us on Facebook for tips and trends on lighting.