• Jun. 17
is the light intensity directly in front of the lamp. And always remember a rule of thumb for effective lighting up- grades is to save energy while main- taining or improving lighting quality. “Make sure to maintain the overall light quality and output that the cus- tomer is used to,” said Alfred LaSpina, LED product group marketing man- ager, LEDVANCE ( sylvania.com).
• Lighting quality.
LED replace- ment lamps and retrofit kits should provide similar light distribution as the incumbent lamp while potentially improving color quality. “If properly designed, the replace- ment does not compromise light dis- tribution both in terms of center beam punch and off-axis consistency,” said Tom Quinn, vice president of sales, Lunera Lighting ( lunera.com). “It is possible to review a polar plot that compares the light distribution of a fixture using a standard HID lamp vs. an LED replacement lamp.”
• Socket condition.
Evaluate the condition of the luminaire and socket prior to committing to an LED option. “An ideal condition for replacing HID with LED would be a socket that is not aging,” LaSpina said. “Also [de- termine] whether the base is medium or mogul, as HID LED replacement lamps tend to be heavier than their traditional counterparts, and the socket needs to take the weight of the new product. If the sockets are older, a replacement would be needed prior to installing the LED solution.”
The lamp should be properly designed for the ambient heat conditions. “A properly designed LED lamp should be able to deliver adequate lumens to meet the needs of the application while maintaining an LED package temperature that en- sures the LED chip will operate reli- ably over the stated 50,000-hour L70 life,” Quinn said. “A good LED re- placement lamp manufacturer should be able to provide in situ test data showing the temperature of the LED chips remains below the chip manu- facturer’s thermal specification when the lamp reaches a steady-state oper- ating temperature when deployed in a typical application.” That being said, Engle warned that LED lamps may not be able to with- stand the high ambient temperatures present in some HID lighting applications. “Be careful about the environment that these lamps and kits are used in,” he said. “The HID fixture was carefully designed to do a specific lighting job and survive a spe- cific environmental condition. Always make sure that the LED lamp or retrofit kit does not compro- mise the lighting job and will work in the environment.” Another aspect of temperature is that LED lamps produce a fraction of the heat of HID lamps, which can be ben- eficial in conditioned spaces. “If the installation has people utilizing the space, cooling methods may be neces- sary to maintain a comfortable envi- ronment, which adds to a building’s energy costs,” LaSpina said. “This isn’t an issue with LEDs.”
• UL listing.
The LED replace- ment lamp should be listed and ap- proved for use in the given luminaire. “Depending on the replacement solu- tion, an electrician may be required to bypass the existing ballast,” LaSpina said. “This would void the UL listing of the luminaire, so it is important to choose an LED replacement that has a dual UL listing—
which would carry the listing that is required for retrofit.”
The majority of LED lamps are not controllable. LED ret- rofit kits are typically packaged with standard drivers that feature 0V to 10V leads that can be connected to control systems. This makes a wide range of lighting control strategies available to luminaires that had lim- ited options when fitted with HID lamps. These strategies can gener- ate additional energy cost savings, extend life, increase flexibility, and potentially produce data.
“Building owners have three choices for upgrading light- ing infrastructure,” said Quinn. “One, do nothing. Two, do something. Three, do everything. Doing nothing is short- sighted as there are valuable operational savings that can come from an LED lighting upgrade. Doing everything is still expensive. Doing something is the obvious play. Con- verting an existing building to LED via a lamp upgrade or retrofit conver- sion is simple, safe, and affordable. Expect payback to be inside of one year when converting from HID to LED.” “The best advantages of LED replacement lamps and kits are the easy installation and the low cost,” Engle said. “The disadvantages are questionable reliability, questionable thermal performance, and mismatch to the application. The best applica- tion for both of these products is a damp or dry location that will not see extreme temperatures or high dirt conditions. In these applications, the reliability and thermal performance issues are minimized.” ;
, LC, principal of Zing Comm- unications ( zinginc.com), is a lighting industry journalist, analyst, marketing consultant, and author. Reach him at email@example.com.
Building owners have three choices for upgrading light- ing infrastructure. One, do nothing. Two, do something. Three, do everything. Doing nothing is shortsighted…. Doing everything is still expensive. Doing something is the obvious play.
—TOM QUINN, Lunera Lighting
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