Lighting is one of the most ubiquitous products out there in the market today. Lighting is a unique item that is used by everyone, from your house to your car, office, flashlight, the list goes on. LED lighting has been replacing incandescent and other various forms of lighting over the past few years to be the main source of lighting. As the LED market technology consistently evolves, this provides the consumer with increasingly better and longer last technology and greater flexibility in the product.

LEDs use up to 80-85% less energy than traditional bulbs and have extremely long life spans! If you are looking for an easy way to reduce your monthly utility bill and save money, upgrade to LEDs. 

The Basics of LED Lighting

What are LEDs and how do they work?

  • LED stands for light-emitting diode

A diode is a small electrical device (or component) that are generally made from semi-conductor materials, such as silicon or selenium. When an electrical current passes through the LEDs, the LEDs emit visible light. LEDs are very small in size, more energy efficient and have an long life expectancy comparable to regular incandescent light bulbs.

What Type of Lighting do I Need?

  • Where and What. All depends on where you’re trying to illuminate and what your needs are. LED lighting products and systems are not confined to a specific size or shape, unlike traditional halogen or incandescent light bulbs. Throughout the past decade LEDs have become much more advanced and have the ability to be tailored and controlled specifically to your needs. Watts measure energy usage, lumens measure brightness.

What Should I be Looking For?

  • Every home, every room, every office is different. Below is an overview of how to best pick the most optimal lighting solutions for your needs.

Home Use – Cool white light illuminates the areas you need, providing the required light to keep you focused, alert and motivated.

  • Look for LEDs with a color temperature between 3000 – 5000k

Living Room – Entertain, work, play, relax. The living room functions as a multi-purpose room which requires a variety of different lights. Adjustable and dimmable lights provide you the opportunity to change the lights to the light levels you would like. Table lamps, spotlights, striplights all can be positioned to greatly enhance all your needs. 

  • Look for LEDs with a color temperature between 2700 – 5000k

Dining Room – An area that serves multiple purposes, from dining to a gathering space to a place to do homework and study. Choose dimmable LEDs that can create an ambiance for you.

  • Look for LEDs with a color temperature between 2700 – 5000k

Bedroom – Choose dimmable LEDs that can be on a bedside table as well as work in a bathroom to help you prepare in the morning.

  • Look for LEDs with a color temperature between 2700 – 5000k

Kitchen – Another area of the house that acts a workspace. Choose LEDs that are bright and can provide you clean lighting for making that next gourmet meal, keeping you alert and provide a great ambiance for the area.

  •  Look for LEDs with a color temperature between 2700 – 5000k

Outdoor – LEDs 

Why Should I Care About Energy Savings?

There are significant savings ($), reduction in energy use, rebates available and LEDs provide you the availability to be flexible in how you setup your system.

  • Utility Savings 
    • Less energy = money saved. A typical incasdescent bulb uses 60Ws of power to generate light, where LEDs can generate the same amount for less than 10W.
  • Lifespan & Maintenance Reductions
    • LEDs have a very long life expectancy comparable to incandescent and florescent lights. An average LED has a lifespan of ~25k hours (18-21 years), whereas fluorescent bulbs average around 7k hours (6-8 years) and incandescent bulbs average around 1k hours (~1 year).
    • If you do not have to trade out an LED for 21 years, you are saving considerable time not purchasing another incandescent/fluorescent light bulb as well as any additional costs you might accrue (i.e. driving to store, time, etc.)
    • If you’re a city manager or a facility manager, you also save on not having to send crews out to change out lights on a regular basis, which can be very expensive line item. 
  • Rebates
    • There are many tax credits/rebates/incentives to upgrade to more energy efficient lighting. The easiest way to check if you’re eligible for a rebate is to refer to the Department of Energy’s DSIRE site
  • Controls
    • Command and control all your lighting assets to when you want them to turn on, light levels, build programmable zones, each fixtures can be programmed to work independently to your choosing.
    • You can adjust dimming, color changes, brightness, mood of space with the simple push of a button!
  • Flexibility 
    • LEDs allow you to choose the colors you want to have in the space, whether it be in an office environment, backyard or living room.
    • Work in a large city or facility? Command and control your whole lighting network through controls and take full advantage of saving energy and reducing your utility bill. You will see instant reductions in your bills in the short term and improvements over the long term

Lighting 101 - Learn the Basics

There is an extensive dictionary of the all terms that are associated with lighting and the lighting world. Below are just a few of the just terms associated with the industry measuring techniques and terms. These terms might help you with deciding what type of lighting you are interested in.

Ambient – The surrounding light level in a given area. It is also the temperature in which a LED light source is expected to operate in. Referring to light, it is the light given off by the Sun, Moon, other light fixtures nearby or even within the same space.

Color Rendering Index (CRI) – Also CCT or Correlated Color Temperature. It is a measure of the quality of light. CRI describes how a light source makes the color of an object appear to human eyes and how well subtle variations in color shades are revealed. CRI values generally range from 60(average) to 90(best). High CRI equates to sharper, crisper, more natural colored pictures while at the same time reducing glare.

Daylight Harvesting – Allowing natural light to effectively provide internal lighting. Daylight harvesting is very effective and designed when a building can maximum both artificial lighting and reduce energy consumption. 

Dimmer – A device that allows the reduction in wattage of a single bulb or set of luminaries. Can be controlled from a wall switch or from a smartphone app

Efficacy – How well a light source can turn input power into the desired output, measured as the number of lumens produced divided by the rate of electricity consumption (lumens per watt).

Kelvin (Color Temperature) – The light appearance provided by a light bulb. It is measured in degrees of Kelvin (K) on a scale from 1,000 to 10,000. Incandescent lights have a low color temperature (~ 2800K) and have a red-yellowish tone; daylight has a high color temperature (~ 6000K) and appears bluish (Cool White, is rated at 4100K). Lights with color temperatures below 5000K tend to be more yellow/red, lights rated 5000-6000K are viewed as white, while lights >6000K tend to have a blue cast.

Kilowatt Hour (kWh) -The measurement of electrical energy from which electricity billing is determined.

  • For example, a 100-Watt bulb operated for 1000 hours would consume 100 kilowatt hours (100 Watts x 1000 hours = 100 kWh).
  • At a New York City (NYC) billing rate of $0.21/kWh, this bulb would cost $21.00 (100 kWh x $0.21/kWh) to operate over 1000 hours.
  • Click here to visit the Open Rate Database (URDB) and find out what your local rates are (or check your monthly utility bill)

Lumen – The lumen rating of a lamp is a measure of the total light output of the lamp.

Operating Life – Number of hours a specific type of LED is expected to be operational

Watt – The unit of measuring electrical power

Watt Per LED – It can be confusing when two watt numbers are used in product specifications. For the application to smd hiqh powered LEDs, the 1 watt, 3 watt, 5 watt, etc, refers to the power consumption of that specific LED installed in that product The watt numbers expressed as light output are a comparison to an incandescent light bulb light output, for example- a 60 watt liqh toutput is equal to a 60 watt incandescent light bulb.



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