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Brilliant, Energy-Efficient Lighting for Large Spaces

Lighting doesn’t just impact how we feel at home- it also tremendously influences our experience in larger-scaled spaces, whether in a high-end office environment, a basketball court, or a warehouse. And while our experience of light in these spaces is the same, their size and complexity can make getting it right much more daunting. But it’s worth it- switching to effective, energy-efficient lighting can feel like opening the blinds on a bright day.

It’s been proven that great lighting impacts mood, productivity, and energy levels. And not only does brightness and effectiveness improve, but energy and maintenance expenses also drop. Lights that use less energy and last longer mean less wear and tear and far more infrequent replacement of bulbs and parts like transformers. It’s not just about shrinking your carbon footprint- it also means more efficient use of your money and time.

So, what technological magic brings all these benefits? LEDs are our versatile heroes for all large-scale spaces.

 

LED Lighting Benefits for Commercial Spaces

LEDs are excellent for large, open-plan business settings. These energy-efficient lighting alternatives are ideal for organizations aiming to lower their carbon footprint and energy expenditures due to their extended lifetime and high light quality. Also, their low heat and small scale allow for exceptional versatility in where they’re placed within spaces.

Unlike older technologies like incandescent bulbs, LEDs use energy far more efficiently when generating light. They turn 95% of energy into visible light and only 5% into heat, meaning a 12-watt LED bulb can generate the same amount of light as an old 100-watt incandescent equivalent. That’s efficiency. And rather than the 1,000-hour life of old bulbs, they last over fifty times longer, significantly reducing maintenance expenses and landfill trash.

More than that, LED technology offers small-scale (as small as a computer chip) and customizable color temperatures that increase alertness and accuracy. They evenly distribute bright white light across spaces and have a higher color rendering index (CRI) than many older types of lighting, including metal halide and fluorescent technologies. This means LED lights render colors more accurately and can be placed in tighter spaces, which is vital in all types of businesses where even light, product visibility, and vivid displays are critical.

 

Choose the Right Fixtures

While project type requires careful selection of the right types of light fixtures, it’s never more important than in large spaces. Key variables include ceiling height and the type of activity expected in the space. For example, intense “high bay” lights may suit the high ceilings in gyms, sports courts, and warehouses. Their significant output can illuminate every nook with dazzling white light in rooms 20+ feet high.

In contrast, “low bay” lights work well in 12 – 20-foot ceiling areas. The wider beam spread and lowered intensity will ensure great lighting without becoming overbearing.

More constrained or specialized spaces benefit from recessed, flat, or flush-mounted lights. They fit within, on, or near the ceiling and are perfect for lower ceilings, constrained spaces, or where minimizing glare (visibility of the light source) is essential. Even tiny slivers of space, like toe kicks under cabinetry, the underside of flat shelves, or wall gaps, can accommodate lighting using self-adhesive, low-profile LED tape lighting.

 

Key LED Selection Considerations

You may ask, “Why not upgrade all my fixtures with the same type of LED bulbs?” While this seems the easiest solution, color temperatures, output, optics, and dimming capabilities must be considered.

Remember that, unlike incandescent bulbs, wattage is not an indicator of light output. Instead, focus on “lumens,” the measure of light that a bulb or fixture can create. With 800 lumens as equivalent to an old 60-watt incandescent bulb, we can start to make sound judgments on how much and how many lights we need. Consider ceiling heights, beam spread, and square footage. Also, remember that it’s possible to overdo lumen output, which might create eye strain and lower your savings on energy bills.

LEDs also offer a far broader range of color temperatures, measured in “Kelvin,” than we ever had with older lighting technologies. Higher color temperatures are bluer, while lower temperatures are more golden. For large-scale working spaces, look for 3500K and higher to ensure a clean and crisp look while improving energy levels and focus.

Optics are also important; they shape and focus light to ensure even coverage. While high ceilings can allow for tighter optics since the light will spread out diffusely on the floor, placing the same fixture in a low-ceiling space will create undesirable hot spots. Look for beam angle and optic specifications for each fixture or bulb you choose.

While warehouses and sports courts don’t usually require dimming capabilities, it can be helpful to reduce the intensity of light in work environments to accommodate the different activities that occur in those spaces. Remember that LEDs require specific dimmers to operate correctly, so look for “dimmable” models and consult manufacturer “dimming reports” to ensure your dimmers are compatible with your fixtures and bulbs.

LEDs have created a revolution in efficient lighting, and in large-scale and commercial environments, their effectiveness, longevity, and flexibility have quickly made them the new standard across the board. Keeping just a few things in mind will guarantee that your spaces will be as brilliant as they are efficient.

 

The Dominion Lighting team brings you insight and access to over 300 manufacturers to bring brilliant, energy-efficient lighting design for your space!
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