Monday, February 18, 2013

Five Things to Consider in A Lighting Retrofit: Part 2

Our last blog described the concept of a lighting retrofit as discussed in this piece, and gave the first two from our list of five important considerations in that project. Here are three more factors to weigh as you upgrade your facility.

Lifecycle Cost Evaluation. The “lifecycle” portion of this is important, especially if an LED or CFL retrofit is being undertaken. While upfront costs will be higher, energy savings over the extended life of these bulb types are remarkable as compared to fluorescents or incandescents. To reiterate: the dual savings of increased lifespan (up to fifty times as long, for LEDs), combined with lower energy bills, add up to much lower long-term costs. Be sure to factor in lifecycle, projected energy use, and the initial upfront capital investment when working out your cost analysis.

Certifications. From UL to LEED, there will be certification implications when lamps and ballasts are retrofitted. Most documentation indicates that a listing or certification will be cancelled out with a hardware change. However, UL will evaluate retrofits on-site to relist a facility and fixture.

Recycling. Depending upon the age of existing bulbs and ballasts, specialized disposal may be required throughout a retrofit. Hazardous chemicals and PCBs may be present, and, if you are undertaking a retrofit from, say, CFLs to LEDs, very low levels of mercury will be present in the CFLs, meaning that they cannot simply be thrown out. When in doubt, contact your municipal sanitation department with any questions.
We hope that this guide has proven useful whether you are considering such a project, or have already undertaken one with our help!

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