Bright Ideas

by Lawton Brothers | Aug 30, 2021

Generally speaking, you will need to replace light bulbs far more often than you will light fixtures. And since lighting accounts for approximately 17% of your energy use as a business, there are some major savings that you could be missing out on with just a few simple switches. If your building is making use of incandescent, halogen, HID, or T12 fluorescent bulbs, you could be racking up quite the energy bill. Updating your lighting can be an easy and effective step to make your business more energy-efficient and reduce your costs. 

Replacing Old Light Fixtures

The first step when replacing any light (or doing any sort of electrical work) is to shut off the power. Of course, it’s best to be prepared ahead of time with the right materials. This includes knowing what type of bulb/wattage is required as well as reading through the manufacturer’s instructions and observing building/electrical codes. 

Once the power is off, you can remove the cover for the light fixture and the old wire connectors. Check the electrical box and verify that it’s securely fashioned to the ceiling/wall and that the structure can support the weight of the fixture. Additionally, the electrical box must be compatible with the light fixture. If you’re ever unsure about the suitability of your current box, it’s best to purchase and install a new one. 

Following the manufacturer’s instructions, match your new fixture’s wires to your home’s existing wires. Typically, like colors connect to like colors (black to black, white to white). Using a wire stripper, remove the wire coating to expose some of the new wire. Wrap the bare sections of the corresponding wires together and screw on the wire connectors. Be sure to also connect the grounding wire once this is complete (these are often green and connect to a grounding screw on the grounding bar). You can then push and fold the wires into the electrical box and attach the fixture’s base. Following this, your fixture is ready for its new bulbs and some illumination. 

Replacing Old Lights

Typically, your light fixture will display the required wattage somewhere on its base or in the bulb’s socket. Once you know the correct wattage, you can shop for bulbs. Now is the easiest time to switch to an energy-efficient bulb, such as an LED. 

LEDs (or light-emitting diodes) produce light up to 90% more efficiently than incandescent light bulbs. Using a microchip, these bulbs produce very little heat and can last 15 times longer than traditional bulbs. Better yet, there are many rebate programs throughout the United States to promote the use of LEDs and Energy Star certified bulbs. Many of these target commercial buildings and save upwards of $200 simply for making the switch to more energy-efficient bulbs and fixtures. 

Let Us Light-en the Load

Don’t keep your business in the dark – call us with your questions! As your local janitorial supply company for over 75 years, our professionally certified staff are always happy to help. From products and supplies to equipment and training, Lawton Brothers has you covered. Give us a call today and see about getting a free audit at: 800.432.0813.

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