Be a Control Freak: Check Your Stairwells for Fast ROI

a guest post by Tim Hogan, Vice President – Education Market at Acuity Brands Lighting

Be a Control Freak: Check Your Stairwells for Fast ROI

One of the things we know from our data studies is that stairwells and corridors are mostly empty and unoccupied but the lights are always on. While working on a lighting project for a large university, we chose the Lithonia Lighting WL solution for the stairwells.

Lithonia Lighting Stairwell

It’s an LED option with an integrated sensor and when the space is unoccupied the luminaire can be configured to operate at 10%.

We know that stairways are unoccupied 95% of the times. So for 95% of the time I am using 10% of the energy. The beautiful thing about this solution is that when the third floor stairwell becomes occupied the luminaire immediately lights up because LED is an instant source. It goes from off to full bright instantly. Even a fluorescent takes up to 90 seconds to become full bright.

This fixture on the third floor then sends the signal out to its neighbors on the second and fourth floors and those fixtures become full bright at the same time. So as I’m travelling up or down the stairs, the lights are coming on ahead of me and I’m never walking in a dark space.

The bottom line is you can save up to 90% of the energy 97% of the time. At the university the payback was less than two years and they it be saving $30,000 a year after that.

This is a good example of how Smart Sensors integrated with a layer of modern lighting technology can create a space that works better, costs less and maintenance is not an issue because of the long-life of LEDs.

Have a Graybar Lighting Specialist check out your stairwells and offer energy saving solutions.

Tim Hogan

Tim Hogan works with educators, facilities directors and design professionals to improve lighting solutions for both K-12 and Higher Education campuses. His articles have been published in numerous magazines for education facility designers and managers. He is a frequent presenter at local, regional and national events. Acuity Brands is one of the world's leading providers of lighting equipment, solutions and services.


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