Lighting Renovations – Industrial Spaces

a guest post by Lisa J. Reed, Lighting Designer

Lighting Renovations Industrial Spaces

How old is your existing industrial facility lighting system? Take a walk around with your eyes open for lighting energy wasters. Here are a few places where you should look:

  1. Inside
    An “industrial” building can encompass different types of spaces. You might find offices, warehouses, classrooms, cafeterias, manufacturing, or shipping spaces inside. Remember to apply commercial or educational facility techniques where appropriate.
  2. Outside
    Outdoor lighting is often a safety and security feature for industrial properties. Energy codes are beginning to require lighting controls on outdoor lights, but timers may not be practical in a 24-hour facility. Change to LED wall packs, outdoor fixtures, parking garages, and parking lots with motion control and even dimming for maximum savings.

    Bring the outside in by using skylights or tubular daylighting devices to get as much “free” light as possible. Use lighting controls to keep electric lights turned off when daylight is present.
  3. Lamps
    Check exit signs! Some of these may still be using incandescent lamps. Replace those with LED exit signs for both energy savings and reduced maintenance costs. Look for old T12 fluorescent or metal halide high bay fixtures. Replace those with T5HO fluorescent or LED high bays for multiple ways to save money. First, the new system will actually consume fewer watts. But more importantly, these lights can be switched off when not needed, and a light that is not on is a light that is saving you money.
  4. Fixtures
    Dirty fixtures are inefficient. Clean existing fixtures to get more light without spending any money. When replacing fixtures, think critically about where they are located. Fixtures are not needed above stacks or atop unoccupied floor space, but between stacks and in work or circulation areas. Eliminate unnecessary fixtures for 100% savings.
  5. Controls
    Warehouse aisles are a great place to use automatic lighting controls. Aisles are often empty while the lights are always on. Occupancy sensors can be used to turn on lights only when they are needed. Don’t overlook places like rest rooms, stairwells, and private offices in industrial facilities. Those spaces can also benefit from occupancy sensors.

Industrial and manufacturing facilities represent 30% of the energy usage in the US. While a good portion of that energy consumption is in the processes, lighting retrofits are often quicker and easier to do, with a lower up-front cost. Look around your local warehouse or plant. You’ll almost certainly find a renovation opportunity.

Lisa J Reed photo - Lighting Blog

Lisa J. Reed has been attracted to lighting (like a moth to a flame) for 20+ years. She is the Founding Principal at Envision Lighting Design, LLC in St. Louis, where she designs, teaches, and writes about architectural lighting.


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