Lighting upgrade saves more than $8,000 per month
LED fixtures replace fluorescent and metal halide throughout warehouse, offices and exteriors.
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For more than 100 years, United Warehouse Co. has been a leader in supply chain solutions. When it built its flagship 650,000-square-foot facility in 2004, it outfitted the building with 400-watt metal halide fixtures. During the next 10 years, it gradually replaced most of the metal halides with T5 fluorescent lights, but problems persisted. After upgrading to LED fixtures, the company has cut energy costs by 50%.
Chief operating officer Mark Vanderveen said the reliability of the old lighting had driven him to consider alternatives. “Both the halides and the T5s started wearing out, and the quality of light suffered,” he says. “We wanted to upgrade to LED lighting, but I still had concerns about the maturity of the technology, the durability of the fixtures and the longevity of the drivers.”
United Warehouse took advantage of lighting rebates available through its utility provider to fully retrofit their facility with a variety of LED fixtures (Big Ass Light, bigasslight.com). The supplier also helped United Warehouse apply for the utility rebates at no extra cost.
Ultimately, more than 900 LED fixtures were installed throughout the complex. In the main warehousing spaces, 602 LED lights each output 14,000 lumens of light. Additionally, 5,000-lumen wallpack light fixtures illuminate the buildings’ exteriors, while a variety of LED fixtures provide light in exit ways and offices. Vanderveen says his questions about LED technology have been answered. He also noted that the high bay lights, built from extruded aluminum, were tougher and of a higher quality than their previous lights.
“The quality of light is better, cleaner and more uniform,” he says. “It’s a nicer looking facility.”
Better yet, year-over-year energy costs have fallen by 50%, which amounts to $8,500 to $10,000 a month. Between the immediate reduction in energy costs and the rebates, the lighting renovation was cash flow positive from day one.
About the AuthorJosh Bond, Senior Editor Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.
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