4 Tips to Ensure Your LEDs Don't Increase Your Costs

By Jeff Brain | February 14, 2017

LED lamps have the potential to actually increase costs in your facility, despite their reputation as the most efficient artificial lighting system on the market. If they are integrated without proper research, like with any other lighting method, it is easy to make decisions which will cost you more in the long run.

Below are four ways to help ensure that LED lamps don’t increase your costs.

1. Make Sure to Use Broad-Spectrum LEDs

One issue LED lamps can encounter is that many of them produce a high level of blue-spectrum light. Overexposure to this light can drastically reduce the body’s production of melatonin and other neurotransmitters. This overexposure can also contribute to poor health, increasing sick days and negatively affecting business budgets. Ensuring that your lamps are broad-spectrum can minimize the presence of blue light, protecting employee health.

2. Invest in Quality Lamps and Drivers

Another common issue with the light produced by LEDs is that they often intermittently flicker. Even though this is often nearly imperceptible, the human eye still struggles to adjust to these rapid changes in brightness. This type of flickering can create repetitive eye strain and contribute to stress induced migraines. It is also commonly caused by cheap or mismatched internal lighting ballasts, though it can also be caused by the drivers. Ensuring that these elements of the lamp are high quality components capable of working with other components will help guarantee a healthier, more stable supply of light.

3. Pay Attention to the Chips

LEDs are known for their long lifespans, but they may not last as long as advertised. Contrary to the average lifespan of 50,000 hours, many LED lamps lose intensity over time, sometimes producing as little as 80% of their original output after just 8,000 hours. This loss of intensity can result in a prolonged return on investment, and increased repair costs as these lamps drop below 70% efficiency. Research shows that this loss of efficiency is linked to the quality of control chips within the individual lamps. Micro-cracks and dislocations in the chips contribute to loss of efficiency. When researching the brand of LED you intend to use, make sure that they use high quality chips.

4. Consider Combining LED Lamps with Daylighting

If you are worried about the effect that the abovementioned issues could have on your bottom line, consider integrating daylighting with your LED lighting system. The combination of LEDs and natural light can help provide light 24 hours a day at the lowest price possible. In addition, exposure to natural light can help to counteract some of the negative effects of flickering and blue spectrum light.

To learn more about the benefits of LEDs and other lighting systems, download our eBook  A Comprehensive Guide to Sustainable Lighting.

(Photo: Steve, CC.)
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