A Guide for Businesses Considering a LED Lighting Upgrade

Everything You Need to Know About Commercial LED Lighting

What's Inside?

Use this table of contents to skip ahead to any chapter.

 

Chapter 1 

LED Lighting: The Smart Business Choice

Learn about the history and rise of commercial LED lighting.

 

Chapter 2 

The Business Benefits of LED Lighting

Understand the full business benefits of switching to commercial LED lights.

 

Chapter 3 

Is Switching to LED Right for Your Business?

Determine if switching to LED is right for your business. 

 

Chapter 4 

Lighting-as-a-Service: The Solution to Your Lighting Problems

Learn how lighting-as-a-service can help your business switch to LED lights for zero out-of-pocket expense.

What You'll Learn

Operating expenses -- including utilities -- are a critical factor in ensuring your business’ profitability.

Savvy business owners and property managers look to energy costs as a way to reduce their monthly operating expenses, freeing up precious dollars for expansion, talent, marketing, and growth.

Commercial lighting, if properly managed, can be a cornerstone in your company’s future success.

LED lighting is your business’ energy cost saving solution. Businesses often save up to 70% on energy costs when they switch to LED. With a LED lighting upgrade, you will have the ability to create a healthier bottom line and more predictable cash flow for your business, while following through with your corporate sustainability initiatives.

This guide will help you understand the:

If you've already decided LED lighting is the right solution for your business and are looking for the easiest way to make the switch, skip ahead to this chapter

Chapter 1

LED Lighting:

The Smart Business Choice

Lighting Makes a Big Difference for Your Business

Energy costs are among the largest operating expenses for business owners. Most of this expense is attributed to lighting. The amount of energy that lighting consumes depends on how many hours per day and days per year lights are in use, the number of fixtures, and most importantly – the type of lighting technology installed.

The types of lights a business uses can not only impact the bottom line but also influences the perception and behaviors of customers and employees.

Lighting is a critical aspect of design and property management. It can make products more appealing, leading to more customers and sales. Employee productivity, accuracy and even mental health are directly affected by the quality and performance of lighting. Well-lit spaces are also safer for everyone.

FES-WhitePaper-01-01

What Exactly is LED Lighting?

Stated simply, an LED is a semiconductor device that emits light when an electrical current is passed through it. LED lighting came into widespread commercial use in the 1990’s.

When compared to other commercial lighting types, LED lighting is far superior.

Traditional lighting, while cheap to install, ends up costing you more in the long run because of the lack of energy efficiency and short lifespan. Most commercial lighting systems waste 60-90% of the energy they consume. LED lighting uses very little infrared radiation (heat) to emit light, and has a significantly longer lifespan.

Additionally, traditional lighting produces poor lighting quality overall. Fluorescent lighting in particular emits harsh, irritating, flickering light that can affect the performance and health of your employees.

LED lighting is known to be of a superior quality over all other lighting types, emitting brighter, more vivid, powerful white light.

There is an environmental element at play as well. LED lights do not emit radiation and do not contain mercury. Other lighting systems emit pollutants into the atmosphere and when thrown away improperly have very harsh effects on our environment.

commercial lighting comparison chart

 

LED Lighting is an Imperative,
Not a Passing Fad

As this growth chart indicates, LED lighting has become the global standard and installations are growing at a steady base. The U.S. LED market reached close to $10 billion in 2019 with an estimated 61% of businesses upgrading to LED.

If you haven’t yet converted, now is a good time to seriously consider the option, as incandescent and fluorescent lighting will ultimately become obsolete.

The cost-saving benefits of LED lighting are more widely understood. Combined with awareness of sustainability and the importance of reducing our carbon footprint, this has led to rapid adoption of LED lighting.

By 2024, analysts predict the LED lighting market will reach $128 billion globally, with estimated savings of $18 billion in electricity costs and a reduction of 160 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually.

global led lighting market projections

 

Chapter 2

The Business Benefits of LED Lighting

The advantages of LED technology when compared to other lighting types are significant. Not only is it more efficient, but LED lights last longer, emit better quality light and are critical in saving the environment.

 

As this chart from Bulbs.com illustrates, LED lights last significantly longer than conventional alternatives. Maintenance costs go down and you will have less interruption in productive business/sales time.

CHART: average life of commercial lights by type

Benefits of LED Lights for Commercial Spaces

The benefits of LED lighting goes way beyond efficiency. This green energy choice can help your business in more ways than one. 

Cost Savings

LED lights typically use 25 to 80% less energy than other alternatives, resulting in an estimated $30 billion in energy savings by 2030, cutting U.S. energy consumption in half.

For individual businesses, this can translate into $10,000s in savings per year.

Increased Productivity

The right lighting has been proven to have an impact on employee health and productivity, with some experts translating a 2% increase in productivity and $1,000 per employee per year in value.

Healthier Business Environments

LED lights are lead- and mercury-free, making them less toxic than alternatives. Lead and mercury have been proven to cause health issues. When incandescent or fluorescent bulbs break, then release toxic vapors. No need to worry about this with LED bulbs. 

Safer Spaces

LED lighting solutions create safer environments for customers and employees. The ability to direct lamp beams exactly where you need them most allows you to eliminate dark spots in parking structures and deliver task lighting right where your employees need it.   

 

Environmental Gains

LED lighting has been called “the hero of the sustainability movement.” LED technology reduced carbon emissions by close to 600 million tons in just one year. These reductions translate into planting 74,386 acres of forest or removing 52,310 vehicles from the road.

Multiply that benefit over a decade and business owners wind up feeling pretty good about the decision to upgrade.

Consumer Perception

Consumers and employees alike are more sensitive than ever about environmental awareness and climate change. In fact, close to 60% of employees care about businesses’ commitment to the planet. Hiring and retaining the right talent has a significant impact on your business and your sustainable lighting choices can help (or hurt) your brand’s reputation. 

Chapter 3

Is Switching to LED Lighting Right for Your Business?

The range of applications for LED lighting has grown exponentially and a vast array of fixtures are now available to businesses of all types -- from single-location operations to complex multi-location brands.

 

Business owners see dramatic cost savings, revenue growth, health benefits and risk mitigation.

 

While cost savings are the driving motivation for most companies to upgrade, there are a suite of other benefits that apply to specific industries.

Retailers, Shopping Plazas & Malls

Product lighting has a direct impact on consumer appeal and sales. Bright and spot lighting can draw attention to specific product displays and can actually speed-up the pace of shopping and spending. Dimmer lighting has a calming effect and can slow shoppers down, keeping them in your store longer.

Retailers typically spend as much as 30% of their operating budgets on lighting, so having the right lights for your location can have a huge financial impact.

Parking Structures

Safety is paramount here. More than 50,000 people are injured in accidents in parking facilities every year and 10% of property crimes occur in parking structures and lots. Because lighting can be adjusted and controlled by motion sensors and smart devices, areas can be kept well-lit without resulting in huge expenditures.

Not to mention that a typical parking garage uses 250 fluorescent fixtures for 24 hours a day. This means that a switch to LED lighting benefits both the drivers and the business’ bottom line.

Warehouse & Industrial Spaces

Most warehouse and industrial buildings are running on antiquated lighting technology that uses three times the amount of energy, burns out 10 times faster and emits a high-pitched buzzing sound that negatively affect employee health and productivity.

When warehouses upgrade their lighting, the impact on profitability is vast. LED technology virtually eliminates maintenance costs, increases employee productivity and decreases work injuries.

Auto Dealerships

Both outdoor and indoor lighting is critical and powering these large spaces can be costly. The average LED-powered auto dealership saves about $15,000 per year thanks to this energy efficient technology.

Perhaps even more important to consider though is that the right lighting makes inventory look attractive -- at all hours of day and night. DrivingSales projects that car sales increase 25% when the shopping experience improves. Proper lighting also keeps your inventory safer.

Schools & Education Buildings

Proper lighting can have a positive impact on concentration, alertness, and safety. In one study, reading speed increased 35%, errors decreased 45% and hyperactive behavior decreased 76% after the installation of LED lighting.

Municipal & Government Buildings

City and town halls, libraries, county jails and other buildings are where more than 22 million people spend their workdays. Cost efficiencies in lighting these structures translates into savings for all -- dollars than can be redeployed to programs and other social and community services.

Restaurants & Diners

Lighting is key in creating a pleasant atmosphere that ensures customer and employee satisfaction. It even has an impact on server accuracy and productivity.

Most importantly, with reduced hours of operations and so many local restaurants going out of business, it's a vital way to let the public know you are indeed open for business. 

Hotels & Hospitality Businesses

LED technology is often a key to take hospitality businesses from just breaking even to generating significant profits. By reducing energy expenditures, there’s more capital to invest in other areas. And by providing better lighting in common areas like lobbies, walkways and parking lots, it’s easier to draw in guests and keep them coming back.

Worldwide, the global LED lighting market is expected to reach almost $43 billion in 2020. Researchers report, “An aggressive decline in the prices of Light-Emitting Diode (LED), coupled with the transformation in energy policies across the world, has been driving the market growth."

Moreover, attractive incentives and rebates provided by the governments for the use of LED lighting in several countries will leverage the demand.” Clearly, this is a business solution that is here to stay and new technologies will result in more options and even greater benefits to your business.

 

The Obstacles that Prevent Upgrades

If LED lighting makes so much sense, why hasn’t everyone upgraded already?

It can certainly seem daunting at first. After all, a lot has to happen before business owners can start reaping the rewards.

There are three key reasons business owners cite for delaying their retrofit.

  • Too Expensive - Upgrading to LED technology can be quite costly when business owners try to finance it on their own. Fixtures alone can cost hundreds of dollars each. This doesn’t include the cost of the bulbs, installation or maintenance. It is not surprising for total project costs to run into six figures.
  • Not Enough Time - There are many steps involved with a lighting retrofit and people often don’t know where to start. Between researching different types of lights and assessing needs, to finding the right installation partner, it can take weeks to grasp everything involved.
  • Difficult to Implement - Construction projects of any type often seem overwhelming. Business owners are sometimes forced to close their doors for the project, or at the very least deal with inconvenience and upheaval during business hours.

 

Switching to more cost-effective solutions does not necessarily require a significant upfront expense or inconvenience.

Chapter 4

Lighting-as-a-Service:

The Solution to Your Lighting Problems

Lighting-as-a-Service (LaaS) recently emerged as a solution to commercial lighting needs. This model allows businesses to upgrade with zero capital investment and without any interruption to their business. The LaaS provider covers all the upfront costs to upgrade - including design, manufacturing and installations. The business owner enjoys cost savings instantly and applies a portion of the savings to pay for their lighting upgrade over time.

This model is a new and highly cost-effective alternative. Not only does the service provider assess your needs and create a customized solution, they follow it all the way through installation, and sometimes cover ongoing maintenance of your lighting system.

 

Choosing the Right LaaS Provider Can Save You 70% or More Annually on Your Energy Expenses

Finding the Right Lighting Partner

While there are a number of small lighting-as-a-service providers popping up locally around the country, not all partners are alike. As you begin your LED and Lighting-as-a-Service journey, it’s important that you keep a few things in mind. 

 

 

Savings Potential

Gain an accurate understanding of your current costs and potential for savings.

Industry Experience

Work with professionals with experience in your type of business and its unique needs.

Ongoing Maintenance

Ensure the partner you select will also be responsible for maintenance and troubleshooting.

Long-Term Partner

Select a company that understands the
value of your time and money and serves
as a true partner over time.

Future Energy Solutions: The Nation’s Leading Lighting-as-a-Service Provider

When you choose a LaaS model, you are forging a virtual “partnership” with the company you select.

Future Energy Solutions (FES) enables you to install a LED Lighting system at zero capital cost so you can start saving overnight, while improving the health of your business and the environment. We believe so strongly in the value of our solution that we don’t require an upfront investment.

When you win, we win. It’s that simple.

We've worked with thousands of businesses across the country to:

Generate

$200M+

in energy savings

Install

500K+

energy efficient lights

Eliminate

68M+ lbs

of CO2 emissions/yr

Commercial LED Lighting Experts

Offering solutions unmatched by any other company in the market, we're on a mission to make it easy for businesses to make smart energy choices. We've partnered with thousands of customers saving them money, reduce maintenance and enhance business environments at no upfront capital cost. Our installation and maintenance teams are deployed across the country, guaranteeing speedy and reliable service to our customers when they need it.

Experience

FES solves a wide range of complex business challenges, including planning, installation, and maintenance. We tailor solutions designed to add maximum value for various environments, including:

  • Retail plazas & parking lots
  • Car dealerships & service centers
  • Casual dining establishments
  • Hospitality & leisure spaces
  • K-12 public & private schools
  • Warehouses & logistics sites

Team

Equally important as the savings we deliver is the team that supports your project. We are experienced, transparent, and collaborative. We know that time also equals money and we work efficiently and quickly.  Our values are clear.

  • Collaboration
  • Transparency
  • Passion
  • Commitment
  • Excellence

Here's a Look at Our 360-Degree Approach

Lighting solutions are never “one size fits all.” FES creates customized lighting solutions purposefully-built to add maximum value to your business.

Our process starts with a comprehensive lighting audit. Then we craft a plan that applies to your specific needs. We provide financial detail and estimated savings, so you will never have to face unpleasant surprises.

  • energy saving specialist

    1. Connect & Gather

    Your dedicated energy saving specialist gathers information from your existing energy utility bills and assesses your site(s), so we can accurately forecast your savings.

  • energy audit

    2. Audit & Review

    We conduct a complete and detailed on-site analysis of your current lighting system and capture data required for the new lighting system.

  • custom led lighting system

    3. Design & Specify

    You get a customized zone-by-zone new lighting solution that will enhance your location and maximize energy savings. We’ll address all inside and outside areas, including public and private spaces.

  • engineer commercial led lights

    4. Engineer & Procure

    We use our years of purchasing power and
    expertise to supply your new LED lights and
    fixtures, including any special accessories
    required.

  • led-lighting-installation

    5. Full-Service Installation

    We mobilize the FES installation team to complete the site upgrade without disruption to your business. We will seamlessly install the new system and remove the old lights. Your old fixtures will be disposed of in an environmentally-safe way and in accordance with state regulations.

  • led lighting maintenance

    6. Service & Maintain

    Eliminate the headaches of burnt out bulbs. Your service includes dedicated and on-going care and maintenance for your new lighting system. We’ll keep your lights shining bright for the duration of our relationship.

energy saving specialist

1. Connect & Gather

Your dedicated energy saving specialist gathers information from your existing energy utility bills and assesses your site(s), so we can accurately forecast your savings.

energy audit

2. Audit & Review

We conduct a complete and detailed on-site analysis of your current lighting system and capture data required for the new lighting system.

custom led lighting system

3. Design & Specify

You get a customized zone-by-zone new lighting solution that will enhance your location and maximize energy savings. We’ll address all inside and outside areas, including public and private spaces.

engineer commercial led lights

4. Engineer & Procure

We use our years of purchasing power and
expertise to supply your new LED lights and
fixtures, including any special accessories
required.

led-lighting-installation

5. Full-Service Installation

We mobilize the FES installation team to complete the site upgrade without disruption to your business. We will seamlessly install the new system and remove the old lights. Your old fixtures will be disposed of in an environmentally-safe way and in accordance with state regulations.

led lighting maintenance

6. Service & Maintain

Eliminate the headaches of burnt out bulbs. Your service includes dedicated and on-going care and maintenance for your new lighting system. We’ll keep your lights shining bright for the duration of our relationship.

Reduce

Flip the Switch to LED

Ready to make the switch? Upgrading your lighting system couldn’t be more simple. Start by talking to an FES energy saving specialist today.