There are so many LED options out there, how do I know what is good?
Very true. The LED quality is associated to the quality of it’s inputs (driver, diodes) and especially it’s complete design (sizing of driver, heat sync). But we have found of almost equal importance is knowing and understanding the manufacturer. Some products that are consider local manufactured are no more than assembled fixtures in Canada, all sourced from Asian markets. At iBarn we strive to know the manufacturer and tour the facilities where the work is completed to ensure it is not built in some entrepreneur’s garage. And just because your electrician recommends a fixture that his wholesaler recommends does not indicate reliability.
What does rated life of a fixture indicate?
LED’s generally have at least 50,000 hours and many actually have 100,000 hours for the LED’s rated life. However, the real indicator is the “L70” rating provided by an independent lab. This rating is producing by testing with a particular focus on operating temperature of the fixture. LED’s being a solid state lighting don’t just suddenly quit or burn out. Almost always the limiting factor to the life of a fixture is the driver – which is impacted by the operating heat within the fixture. This is one simple reason why we avoid LED tubes, because our experience has shown the problems of compacting in a very small driver into a tube that contains the heat the LED’s generate.
Should I wait a couple more years till LED’s are more reliable and cheaper to acquire?
In the past 5 years we have worked with numerous fixtures and manufacturers. While there is much crap in the marketplace – even through your electrician and traditional wholesalers – we do believe that there are products reliable to accomplish the needs of our environments today. Additionally, most times the payback is noticed in 1 to 3 years, so any delay in making this change will ultimately forego an opportunity to make the returns providing by dropping the energy demand. Of course, the greater impact is often simply improving the livestock environment which can provide a greater output in production.
Do I get a rebate for making the decision to install LED lights?
In most cases when working with the right partner, the right fixture and the right process a rebate can be attained. Rebate programs continually change and it can vary depending upon location, hydro provider, and time of year. Fixtures applicable for LED rebates need to be DLC (Design Light Consortium) approved. All standard fixtures provided by iBarn are DLC approved. Rebate programs can also vary depending upon new construction and retrofit. Additionally, rebate applications can vary depending upon the project to determine the most efficient method. For example, a custom application can often provide great value when working with lighting controls that capitalize on dimming (further energy reductions).
How come my electrician is recommending a different fixture?
We often recommend working with your local electrician who knows your farm and with whom you have a deep level of trust. However, too often we have found electricians lean heavily upon their one and only wholesaler to provide them fixtures. For them this provides ease of sourcing. More importantly, they are often irritated that they may be required to install a fixture that doesn’t allow them to make margins or not allow them to look like the expert. However, the shortfall in them relying upon a wholesaler is that many times as the farmer you do not receive the support you require in photometric design, and understanding to optimize the lighting. Further, we have found that a good portion of LED fixtures available through the wholesaler are not fixtures we would recommend for reasons of quality of manufacturer; fixture efficacy; or even fixture design.
I am an electrician – why should I work with iBarn?
iBarn sources fixtures from manufacturer direct eliminating the layer of agents and wholesalers. This ensures your client is always receiving good value for the fixture. More importantly, we provide full service that makes you look like a genius compared to your competitor. Simply send us the details of your project and we will provide you the tools to show the client the right decision: photometric designs; ROI model; estimate. But ultimately we spend our time working with manufacturers to ensure we are sourcing some of the most leading edge LED’s that are the best in the marketplace and reliable for you to recommend to your clients.
My building budget is tight – I am not sure I can do LED’s!
If you approached any banker or business man and suggest a 30% ROI or a payback on investment that is 1 to 3 years – the approval shouldn’t be an issue. Your capital spend budget may be reaching a limit, but if you don’t include LED’s into your project today then you will only be spending more money long-term in increased operational costs and reduction in profitability. If required we can also assist with a Leasing option to ensure that the monthly cash-flow remains in line and allowing you to capitalize on the opportunity to find energy savings.