Does it seem like you’re constantly relamping your parking lot lights? Or maybe you’re looking for bulbs with better energy efficiency to lower your business electricity bills and have fewer maintenance woes.
Either way, you may be looking to get rid of your old lot lights— specifically, to replace your current lamps with high-performance LEDs.
This leaves you with two options: either completely replace your parking lot lighting units or retrofit your current fixtures with LED hardware.
Regardless of which you choose, both jobs need to be done by a professional, and in this blog, we’re here to explain why.
Full Fixture Replacement Requires Manpower & Equipment
When looking to upgrade your parking lot lights with LEDs, there are many reasons to opt for an entirely new setup versus trying to retrofit your old fixtures.
Modern LED-designed fixtures help to regulate proper heat dissipation, produce a higher lumen output and have a more modern look. That means they not only save on electric costs, but they shine brighter and look snazzier!
But as you might imagine, these added features come with a higher price tag. That’s because you’re paying for full pole or fixture replacement and the manpower and equipment to do the job.
While it is possible to install parking lot lights on your own, you’d have to know all the supplies you’d need— as well as have the people, knowledge and tools to properly affix them.
The easier, better and safer option would be to contact a qualified electrician with a boom truck. Having a special vehicle with a lift allows the electrician to quickly and safely change out parking lot lights or heavy fixtures and equipment. That means no ladder falls or disruptive construction in your lot.
Even Retrofitting Involves Complex Electrical Know-How & Installation
Because new LED fixtures come with higher initial installation costs, many business owners opt for the more cost-conscious option and retrofit their existing fixtures with new LED hardware.
Retrofitting isn’t simply a matter of unscrewing an HID bulb and replacing it with an LED light. “The existing fixture will typically need to be pulled apart and the ballast replaced with the LED driver. In some cases, the existing socket can be used, but if not it will also have to be rewired,” Electro Matic points out.
There are lots of old lighting fixtures out there— from metal halide or low-pressure sodium lighting to mercury vapor lamps— all of which require their own tinkering to retrofit to LED.
This could involve cutting wires inside the fixture, mounted on a 12 to 20-foot pole, and an understanding of your current electrical setup and conversions. This is definitely something to leave up to the electricians!
Is it smarter to replace or retrofit my parking lot lights?
While the initial LED replacement and installation cost of new parking lot fixtures can scare some business owners, it’s important to keep in mind that old high-intensity discharge (HID) bulbs usually need group relamping once every three years, which even for a lot of 25 parking lights could run up to $8,000. Plus, this price doesn’t include a ballast replacement or additional upgrades.
LEDs have fewer maintenance concerns. Plus, after a few years of energy savings, these lights pay for themselves and then some.
But despite the long-term savings, we understand a full replacement of all parking lot lights isn’t always within your budget. Luckily, retrofitting your lights can achieve the same goal without the huge upfront cost.
A Sure Job for the Professionals
While there are a lot of electrical projects you can tackle for your business alone, replacing or retrofitting your parking lot lamps is not one of them.
If you are a Southwest Florida business that needs parking lot light maintenance/relamping, replacement or retrofitting, give our team at SWFL Electric a call at (239) 307-0716, today.
Our boom trucks can be on-site replacing your parking lot lights in a matter of hours!