Parking lot owners have to come to terms with the fact that parking lights that have been in place for several years have to be replaced as soon as possible. Recent technological advances have made lights much more efficient and effective. And at the forefront of all of this are LED parking lot lights. These lights provide several more benefits and the energy savings alone is worth the installation or the conversion.
LED lights vs HID Lights
HID lights are the most used kinds of lamps, especially for parking areas. These lights are powered by a gas-discharged arc, which is activated with an electric current through ionized gas and two electrodes. This is all contained inside a glass capsule in a lamp. On the other hand, LED uses solid-state technology to convert electricity into light. LED makes use of semiconductors to fit into an electrical circuit. When the light is turned on the electricity passes through these semiconductors activating the modules to emit light.
Unlike HID lights, LED spreads light in an even pattern. This light spread is contained within the fixture, unlike HID lights that have to be outfitted with huge reflectors to maximize the light output. HID lights also create light that is not always appealing. Most HID lights also degrade over time, decreasing the quality of the light source. HID lights are also known to take a while to warm up before they can be fully illuminated. HID are cheaper to install initially, but the energy costs and longevity makes it a worse option than the much more efficient LED lights.
There are different kinds of layouts for most parking lots, but all parking lot lights have to be attached to a high fixture. In most cases, this means poles. From a pole, light can spread easily in an area. Once you have decided where to place your lights and what kind of lights you will be using, this will determine how far apart your lights are. LED lights produce more light and can be spread out. This means that you will need less poles around your parking lot. Pole height, or the distance of the pole from the ground can also be determined by the kinds of lights that you use. LED lights can be placed much higher while still illuminating the area properly. This gives more space in your parking space.
Replacing or Retrofitting
In terms of lighting and light fixtures, retrofitting is the procedure of adding a newer and better system to your current setup. In most cases, LED parking lot lights can use the existing light fixtures with the use of LED retrofit kits. Retrofitting is also a much preferred method of switching to LED lighting because it costs less money and it can be done in a shorter time frame. But the cost and time savings is not usually the primary reason why parking lot owners choose to retrofit. In most cases, retrofitting is used so that the aesthetics and design of the parking lot can be preserved. The only problem with retrofitting is that the existing light fixtures have to be compatible with LED light technology.
Increased Light Efficiency With Various Controls
LED lights also offer better controls in terms of lighting and color. This is because most LED lights can be paired with adaptive control integration. This means that LED lights can be outfitted with options such as dimmable drivers. This gives owners the option to change brightness and illumination. There are also other drivers that give the option to change the passive colors and temperatures such as UV and infrared elements. Other options can also be easily applied, such as motion detectors to activate the lights and time delay controls to keep the light on high mode only during the darkest parts of the day. These controls cut off the power switch to the high illumination mode so that lights run on low mode during the brightest parts of the day when the ambient light is high.
LED Lights Color Control
With LED parking lot lights, you also have the option to control your color temperature. Color temperature determines the color of your light. This does not necessarily mean the hue of the light. But the color temperature of the white light. Or rather how warm of how cool you want your light to be. This makes a difference when entering or exiting a parking structure. It also changes the overall feel of the light on your parking area or structure.