Bright Ideas Lighting Co.

My photo Boise lighting maintenance and energy efficient lighting upgrades

Monday, September 14, 2009

Not all lighting retrofits are created equal

Not all lighting retrofits are created equal.

With the great Idaho Power rebates out right now many businesses are doing lighting retrofits. The most common retrofit is from T12 to T8. One thing to remember is that not all retrofits are the same. There are a lot of businesses that just get multiple bids from different electrical contractors and go with the cheapest, assuming that a retrofit is a retrofit. The cheapest bid is not always the best.

Below are some things to consider when looking at a retrofit.

1. What type of ballasts is the contractor using? The difference between a cheap generic ballast and a high efficiency (NEMA qualified) ballast can be approximately 7% in energy difference. The reason for are doing the retrofit is to save energy. The type of ballast that you use does matter how much energy is saved.

2. What type of light bulbs is the person using? Are they using a cheap off brand import? Are they using 700 or 800 series lamps? Are they using low wattage T8 lamps, or extra long life T8 lamps? If an extra long life bulb is being used? Any of these higher quality light bulbs can add a few dollars per fixture to the lighting retrofit. However, in the long run the cost may well be worth it. These are things that the business should find out before deciding which bid to select. It is very important to make an “apples to apples” comparison.

3. Is the person doing the lighting retrofit a licensed electrical contractor? In this economy there are a lot of people trying to make money where ever they can. Make sure that the person doing the lighting retrofits is licensed by your state.

4. What is the contractor doing with the old T12 fluorescent bulbs? Are they recycling the light bulbs or just throwing them away? We highly recommend businesses request a written certificate of recycling. If a contractor is actually recycling, they should have this on file from their recycler. If they cannot provide a written certificate then they are likely not actually recycling.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Bright Ideas Lighting Co.

Short introduction slide show video about Bright Ideas Lighting Co.

Boise BBB & Bright Ideas Lighting Co.

Filmed a short video clip with the Boise Better Business Bureau.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Enjoying the weather. Still warm, but getting more fall like.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

We will be working on a job down in Twin Falls this week. First time we have went down there for a job.

Monday, August 10, 2009

CFL par style light bulbs

It seems like the pricing on the compact fluorescent PAR style light bulbs has come down and the quality of the product seems to have gone up.

In on retail store in downtown Boise we have replaced all of the 75 watt PAR30 lamps with a 15 watt PAR 30 compact fluorescent light bulb. The CFL actually looks a little bit brighter than the halogen lamps. The business owner really likes the CFLs.

The compact fluorescent light bulbs use 60 watts less than the halogens were using, produce much less heat, and last longer. The CFLs can generally be ordered in several different color temperatures from 2700 to 5000 kelvin. To approximate the halogen color choose 2700-3000 kelvin.

The CFL par lights are not for every application. I don't believe they would work in a restaurant application. Most restaurants that we service use halogen light bulbs with dimmers to control light levels. Also halogens produce a different look than the CFLs some places this works some it does not. We recommend trying the compact fluorescents.

We have these light bulbs work in several Boise locations - retail stores, auto dealers, and hair salons.

We recommend using Energy Star light bulbs. Also, we recommend using the aluminum base lamps if possible. They seem to last longer.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Went to a local tradeshow yesterday. Learned about some new lighting products coming out. Exciting stuff. New LED street lighting.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Rebates from Idaho Power for energy efficient upgrades