Choosing and Installing Your Next Lighting Solution


Choosing and Installing Your Next Lighting Solution

So, I met this guy – we’ll call him Phil – and as we were walking through his facility to review the lighting for some possible upgrades, he starts sharing some of his experience from the last lighting project he had managed there.
I said, “Phil, you just completed a conversion last year. Can you tell me what you learned about choosing and installing a lighting system?”
And this is how that conversation went.
“Lighting … what’s the big deal? Every day I walk in, flick a switch, and the lights go on,” Phil said.
“But the boss wanted me to pick a replacement system. Not sure why … they all still worked, but I told her I would take care of it. It wasn’t that difficult. They’re just lights, and I didn’t think we really needed any of that new-fangled sensor stuff that can get a little confusing.
“We have those regular ceiling fixtures we just looked at in the offices, and some of these long, strip fixture things in the warehouse. They seemed to work just fine.”
Phil went on to say: “So, I went down the street to pick some up and installed them myself. I just put the new ones in where the old ones were. I don’t think anyone even noticed when I was done with it.”

So, I ,would not recommend following Phil’s lead, these are the things he noted as keys to his success:

Phil’s Top 10 Ways to Choose and Install Your Next Lighting Solution
10. Ignore the little markings on the lamps you are considering. They just make it more confusing, and they’re all pretty much the same anyway.
9. Don’t consider LEDs. They are awfully fancy, and probably aren’t worth it. Your space isn’t that special.
8. Don’t overcomplicate by asking about the needs of the folks in each area. They can live with whatever you put in.
7. People will remember to shut off the lights. Don’t worry about all that sensor stuff. It’s expensive, and you have to figure out how they work.
6. Hang ’em yourself … the wires are already there, and there’s that YouTube video about doing it that helped me.
5. Tip the fixtures a little if you have dark areas. That’s an easy way to take care of the problem.
4. Select the least expensive fixtures and extend the warranty to take care of buyer’s remorse.
3. Don’t waste your time with all that messy utility paperwork for rebates. Talk about complex! And I probably didn’t lose out on much anyway.
2. Don’t bother looking at a new layout for the fixtures. They put them where they are for a reason.

And the No. 1 thing you should do when choosing and installing a lighting solution is:
1. Get creative! Mix and match a little. Maintenance doesn’t mind handling some extra inventory.

With all due respect to Phil and his extensive experience in “managing” that last lighting project, I would recommend a more comprehensive approach ensuring that your project is done right the first time, and providing you with long-term value. If you would like to discuss your lighting needs and our truly turnkey solutions, go to our website (
John Loheit is Director of Marketing and Customer
Incentives at Energy Management Collaborative. Reach him


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John Loheit
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