Home' Facility Perspectives : Vol 11 No 1 Contents 26
FACILITY PERSPECTIVES | VOLUME 11 NUMBER 1
| GREEN BUILDING + LIGHTING
quality LEDs can last more than 50,000
hours and produce a more efficient and
more directional light. For businesses, LEDs
promise not only a dramatic reduction in
energy costs, but also a significant reduction
in maintenance requirements.
Is there a catch?
Taking all of this into account, moving to
LED lighting seems like a no-brainer for
most businesses. But there is a catch – and
that’s the up-front cost. While LED lighting
will save money in the long term, many
businesses still baulk at the higher cost of the
There’s also the disruption that a retrofit
could potentially cause to the business and,
of course, you may not have time to research
LED equipment providers or manage
procurement, design and installation.
Where to start with a lighting
Your starting point will be dictated by your
reasons for considering a lighting upgrade.
If you’re getting a lot of complaints about
lighting in your buildings – that it’s too
bright, too dark, or that there’s too much
glare – then you need to start with a lighting
audit. This is because replacing your current
lighting with LEDs will not fix inherent
problems with the location and quantity of
your lighting fixtures.
CitySwitch (www.cityswitch.net.au) has
some good advice on how to approach a
lighting audit, whether you’re doing it yourself
or getting someone else to do it for you.
If you are mostly happy with your
lighting but need to find ways to cut costs
through improved efficiency and reduced
maintenance, there’s the straightforward
option of replacing your existing lighting with
LEDs. The following tips will help you find
the right LED solution for your business.
Five steps to a successful LED project
Remember that an LED upgrade is a long-term
investment. If you select a quality solution,
the long-term results will far outweigh the
short-term cost. Select your provider based on
reputation, not just who has the cheapest quote.
Ask for business references to make sure that
your preferred provider has happy customers.
Thoroughly evaluate the business case
put forward by the lighting provider. This
3 a summary of your existing lighting and
3 recommendations for your new LED
3 return on investment (ROI) calculations
3 a summary of the energy savings you
3 a summary of the maintenance savings
you can expect
3 how long it will take the solution to pay
3 the savings you can expect over the
typical lifetime of the equipment
3 the government rebates you might be
able to access.
Look carefully at the warranties that will
cover equipment and installation. You want
to know that if anything fails, you can get it
fixed at no further cost. If you proceed, make
sure that you keep records of all warranties.
Find out how the provider will manage
the installation without impacting your
business operations. For example, they
might work on weekends or at quiet times
in your operations.
Beware of shortcuts. For example,
some providers will give you the option
to keep your existing light fixtures but
replace the tubes with LEDs. When the
LED tubes are not fitted as part of a
luminaire (a luminaire refers to the LED
light as part of the unit with the correct
light fitting) they operate less efficiently
and will not last as long as they should.
This will lead to increased maintenance
and replacement costs, which means
that the initial saving on fixtures is a false
economy in the long term.
Following these simple steps should
help to ensure that you get an LED
upgrade that will deliver long-term cost
savings for your business.
For more information about how to
approach energy-efficient upgrades,
For more information about Verdia,
About the author:
Nathan Moore leads the engineering team
providing technical advice to Verdia’s
Project Advisory, Product Development
and Asset Management teams. He has
more than 15 years of experience in
the engineering and delivery of projects
in a wide variety of sectors, including
infrastructure, mining and solar PV.
Nathan’s experience includes the
design, delivery and commissioning of
the 1.7-megawatt Weipa Solar Farm at
Rio Tinto’s remote bauxite operation
in Weipa. This project was the first
installation of large-scale PV generation at
a mining operation in a remote location.
Previously, Nathan delivered the
engineering, project and contractor
management for the electrical component
on mining projects worth more than
$12 million, and he managed the Energy
Efficiency Opportunities Program for
Xstrata’s North Queensland operations.
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