How to Figure out the Cost of Lighting for Your Austin, TX Business

Interior LED lighting

Are you looking at your business energy bill thinking there must be a cheaper way? Or, are you planning to retrofit your workspace with LED lighting but have no idea how to estimate it? Switching over to LED in Austin, TX is a step in the right direction to saving money and reducing your carbon footprint.

Calculating the cost of lighting for your business can be tricky. There are many factors that depend on how many bulbs and what types you need. Overall, LED beats out incandescent and fluorescent bulbs.

Let’s look at the total life cycle cost of these three bulb types.

  • Incandescent is often the cheapest to buy but the most expensive to run. 40 wattage, 6 month lifetime, annual ownership cost of $47.
  • Fluorescent bulbs cost a bit more upfront but last longer. 32 wattage, 1.5-year lifetime, annual ownership cost $30.
  • LED now costs the same as fluorescent but has a significantly longer lifespan. 5 wattage, 6-10 year lifetime, annual ownership cost $6.

Knowing the basics of bulb costs and energy efficiency will help you estimate the cost of lighting for your business. But, what are your options for buying and installing new lighting? The three main ways to purchase new lighting are a cash purchase, equipment financing, and LaaS (Lighting as a Service).

Cash Purchase For LED Lighting

Paying outright for LEDs is an option if your business has the ability to pay in full during installation. Many companies choose this to avoid interest and loans. It could be a smart choice, but it also puts a lot of pressure on your cash.

Most businesses in Austin, TX don’t have a lot of money laying around to be spent entirely on lighting. Cash purchase of LED can really be a big burden to companies looking to newly install or retrofit.

Paying cash is a huge investment and may drain your available funds. This could prevent your business from funding projects or initiatives. Because the initial investment is so large, you won’t see energy savings for a few years.

Equipment Financing For LED Retrofitting

Option two allows you to pursue an LED retrofit at a low upfront cost through equipment financing. This is a good option for owners who don’t have large funds available. Cash can then be put back into the business and the retrofit will save on energy costs.

Although this preserves capital in your business, it also adds to your debt. Taking out a loan to pay for equipment means paying off tens of thousands of dollars for years. Another drawback is that you will be spending more on the lease than the cost of the equipment itself. By the end of your lease that equipment could be outdated, and you will be stuck with it.

LED light bulbs

Lighting-as-a-Service (LaaS)

LaaS (Lighting as a Service) is a recent business model that is quickly gaining traction. Essentially how it works is the business owner pays for the lighting and not the fixtures or equipment. This is done through a subscription basis over a multi-year term. No big one-time payment or lease.

If LEDs are the most cost and energy-efficient then why don’t more businesses install them? The initial cost of buying and installing followed by outdated equipment a few years later keeps many companies from making the switch. Paying outright can cost small businesses an average of $20,000, medium businesses $60,000 and larger corporations can pay $500,000 or more!

LaaS looks to offer a better solution. The monthly fee, which is offset by energy savings pays for new lighting. This is much more affordable than a large up-front installation. Companies in Austin, TX can avoid outdated equipment by including upgrades in their contract or replacing old systems at the end of the contract.

At times you’ll run into lighting that needs to be replaced or upgraded. The contract may or may not include this type of maintenance. Your company can choose to take ownership of the system or upgrade the fixtures before beginning a new contract.

Dry, Damp and Wet Rated LED Lighting

When thinking about what kind of lighting you need to install, you need to think about the fixture rating. These ratings tell you which environment the light is made for. If you don’t see this rating on a bulb that means it is a Dry LED. A Dry bulb is not totally enclosed and should not be exposed to water.

Wet-rated bulbs are fully enclosed fixtures that tolerate full exposure to water. You would find them in outside light fixtures and submerged in pools. These types of bulbs have a waterproof seal to keep the water away from the electrical parts of a fixture.

Damp-rated bulbs are in locations that are protected from weather and cannot be fully exposed to water. They can tolerate a fair amount of moisture and humidity. These types of bulbs can be used in bathrooms, kitchens, and greenhouses. You can also use them in outdoor areas that don’t have direct exposure to weather such as eaves of roofs and patio overhangs.

Central Texas is known for its humid and wet summers. Interior lighting in your building may need to be damp-rated to extend the bulb life. Outdoor exposed fixtures will have to have a wet rated to handle the heavy rains and humid climate.

It’s Time to Retrofit LED Light Fixtures

Interior LED lighting retrofit

LED lighting uses up to 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs. Knowing how much you could save by retrofitting your business, what’s holding you back? Not only do you save money, but you can also lower your carbon footprint.

By looking at your needs and your budget you can find an affordable solution for installing LED lighting. You want the deal that will get you the most energy savings at the lowest cost. LaaS outranks the other options by offering a monthly subscription to lighting services, not a lease to equipment.

Take the guesswork out of lighting your building. You want lights that work, are regularly maintained and save you money on your energy bill. Make your lights work for you, your employees and your customers.

To learn more about the cost of LED lighting and services for businesses click here.

5 Awesome Parking Lot Lighting Ideas For Your Property

When trying to find the perfect lighting for your parking lot there are a few factors to consider. The first one being cost. The cost of the light itself and then the cost of all the electricity that light is going to use over time.

The second factor is brightness. There is no reason to bother spending money on a light that is not going to illuminate your lot. A big reason for parking lot lighting in Austin Texas is to make people feel safe, dim lights in a dark parking lot do not accomplish that.

Finally, you need a light professional that can provide you with light that can withstand any kind of weather. A light that breaks in a storm is not going to help anyone park and is a waste of money. Here are five of the lights that meet these standards with a few extra perks to make them above the rest.

1. AntLux 150W LED Parking Lot Lights Shoebox Pole Light 5000K, 450W

This light is a great choice for many reasons. The most important being the amount of money and energy it saves you. The AntLux 150W can cut your electricity bills by seventy-five percent without sacrificing any of the light quality it promises.

The Antlux LED is probably the brightest choice you can make for your parking lot. With 18,600 lumens, this light can make your whole parking lot look like the sun is still out. It is an incredibly bright light to make sure your patrons feel safe and the cars parked in your lot are safe.

It is a light made for the outdoors so you can expect it to last through rough weather. Conveniently, it also fits on round or square poles making installation simple and universal. This light is absolutely something every person who has a parking lot should take a look at.

2.  EverWatt 150W Waterproof LED Outdoor Parking Lot Light with Photocell Sensor

If you are looking for an outdoor light that provides daylight brightness and can withstand harsh weather then look no further. Like all LED lights, this light saves you energy and money. It gives off 20,500 lumens which allow for fewer energy requirements.

The EverWatt 150W lasts for up to 150,000 hours. That means you will almost never have to change it. This light also can turn on and off automatically or manually, allowing you to control which hours you want the light to run.

Finally, this light is weatherproof. It is rated IPX67 which is the level most water-resistant smartphones and headphones are at. That makes this light a great, safe choice for any parking lot.

3. RuggedGrade 450W LED NextGen Parking Lot Light

The first thing to note about this light is that it is expensive. This is certainly not the cheapest light on this list or any other list. It is, however, and excellent light for your parking lot.

This light is also incredibly energy efficient. Requiring only 450 watts while giving you 60,000 lumens.  The RuggedGrade 450W is very low on energy consumption which could end up saving you the extra money you spent on the light itself.

The RuggedGrade 450W is a very lightweight light with long-lasting LEDs. It comes with all the accessories which make installation easy and cheap. It might be an expensive light but it is built to last and makes up for the price by saving you tons of energy.

4. STASUN LED Flood Light 300W 27000lm LED Outdoor Security Lights

This is probably the prettiest light on this list. If you want an aesthetically appealing light that provides the same incredible brightness as the other lights on this list then look no further. Since it is made with LED lights it is also energy efficient.

One of the coolest things about the STASUN LED is that it offers shadow-free lighting. This floodlight has three huge light panels that allow the entire area you need to be illuminated to be brightly lit without any dark areas. That is incredible for security purposes and just makes your parking lot look nicer.

This light comes with a PC lens that keeps your light from fogging up due to weather. It is built to last outside while giving off an incredible, unobstructed light. The STASUN LED is one of the best outdoor lights on the market without question.

5. LEONLITE Ultra Bright LED Parking Lot Light 150W

The LEONLITE is bright enough to be used in both stadiums and parking lots. It is not dimmable but it is certainly bright enough to make everything in your parking lot easily visible in any light. This light can be adjusted to hit any angel making your whole parking lot easy to illuminate.

One of the best things about this light is its heavy-duty design. It is weatherproof so that it can last outdoors in any kind of weather. It also has a sturdy aluminum outside that keeps the LEDs from overheating.

This light requires very few watts. It uses only 150W to give 18,000 lumens, that many lumens usually require about 450W. Overall, this is an excellent light for your parking lot that will remain bright as long as you need it to.

To Conclude

Finding the right outdoor light for your parking lot is harder than many people expect. There are a lot of things to consider and too many lights on the market to look at every single one. Luckily, it is easier to narrow down the necessities in a light.

Looking for lights that save you money usually means you are going to want an LED light. If you want a light that will last then you need to make sure it is weatherproof and not prone to overheating. Finally, the light needs to be bright enough to make your parking lot safer.

This list shows a few of the best parking lot lighting options on the market. Make sure that you look for lights with similar attributes if none of these lights are exactly right. All of this will help you find an awesome parking lot lighting fixture for your business.

Value Engineering through Lighting

If you’re a project manager or contractor then you’ll want to read this! But we know that you’re probably looking at this on your phone and don’t have a lot of time, so here are the main points.

  • The Lighting fixture market is tightly controlled by agents who make sure only a select few receive competitive pricing.
  • The lighting fixture schedule takeoff is the easiest way to cut costs on a project.
  • Ask the engineer, client, or general contractor if any fixtures can be value engineered to optimize savings.

The Way Things Are

What if I told you that the lighting fixture market is tightly controlled by agencies that make sure only a select few receive competitive pricing? What if I told you that certain manufacturers and their agencies will only provide pricing to electrical contractors through an electrical supply house? That’s 3 levels of markup before you ever see the price. What if I told you, that if you didn’t introduce the opportunity to the agent or manufacturer, you are never going to receive the lowest price? That’s why, when you ask for pricing on large bids sometimes, they will ask for the address or job name. So they can make sure they are giving the best price to who they want to. That’s just the way things are!

Late To The Party, Now What?

Whether you’re an estimator, general contractor, or electrician, picture this scenario. You’ve received the plans for a project and want to maximize your potential to save costs and win the job. Where can you start? Lighting. Lighting is one of the easiest and fastest ways to value engineer a project while still providing a quality product(s). Hundreds to thousands of dollars can be shaved off the “would-be” bid by using a different manufacturer or source to procure the requested items. The exact amount depends on the counts and project scope, but with the right approach, it can be done.

How Do I Find Out?

Often times, just reach out to the contact that provided the bid. Sometimes, you have to reach out to the project design and architects at the front pages of the project plans to ask if the lighting fixture schedule is a “hard-spec.” Ask if alternates are acceptable as long as they match specifications and are approved. Offer to submit product sheets for pre-approval. The process itself really can be that simple.

Here is where LED LYSI Lighting can help:

  • We can cross the products for you.
  • We can provide all product and design sheets for the alternate products.
  • Oftentimes, we can even provide pricing on the original products and prepare two quotes for submittal.
  • We can even provide samples when requested.

Let LED LYSI help you win that job or (if you’ve already won) maximize your profitability and savings for the end client. We’ve done this for many contractors and electricians already in Central Texas.