Technology has a funny way of going from cutting edge to everyday with us barely noticing. For example, I was talking about my first microwave with somebody this week. It seemed like a thing of the future, yet it would be a laughable monstrosity today. Now I use my current microwave without a second thought about the technology, and my expectations are much higher than in the ’90s.
Equipment lighting has followed a similar path. A few years ago, LEDs seemed promising, but pricey and under-performing. Now they handily outperform the light output of normal incandescent bulbs, and the price gap is nominal. In fact, if you compare lifetime costs and factor in the LED lifespan of 20,000 hours average, they are actually much cheaper than traditional lighting.
I have started switching to LED whenever I replace damaged lights or need to install new lighting. The feedback from my customers has been very positive. They enjoy the brighter illumination and they don’t miss the burnt out bulbs.
One of the biggest benefits of LED is the low current draw. A 3watt LED can usually outperform a 60watt incandescent. This super-low consumption allows for better lighting solutions (you can simply have more lights than conventional would allow per circuit), virtually no heat (less fire hazards), and less draw on the alternator (means lower fuel consumption).
When upgrading, remember that LEDs are polarity-sensitive. Be sure to confirm polarity when connecting. I’d love to get a dollar for every light that has been returned as “Defective” when they were in fact installed backwards. I could probably retire!
What type of lighting do your customers prefer? Have you had any bad experiences with LEDs?
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