The Importance of Lighting Maintenance

Maintaining a properly illuminated environment for your commercial property is paramount for safety and security, aesthetics, and productivity.

interior lighting

Maintaining a properly illuminated environment for your commercial property is paramount for safety and security, aesthetics, and productivity.  The National Safety Council sites poor lighting in parking lots as one of the leading contributors of injury to pedestrians.  Crime statistics show that more than 10% of all crimes occur in parking lots, especially those with poor lighting. Adequate interior lighting is important as well to ensure safety, increase workers’ productivity and to provide a positive shopping experience.

With newer lighting technologies and the availability of longer-life lighting products, the scope of lighting maintenance programs has changed but is still a critical component of facilities maintenance. 

Benefits of a scheduled lighting maintenance program 

  • Scheduled maintenance can reduce costs by as much as 70% over-reactive calls.
  • Maintaining lighting systems saves on energy consumption and heat output.
  • Cleaning of lighting covers allows for better light transmission.
  • Scheduled maintenance reduces outages and downtime- thereby creating bright, inviting, and safe environments.

Lighting Maintenance Plans

Let’s take a look at both interior and exterior lighting and what a maintenance plan for each would encompass.

Interior lighting:

Your interior lighting has many different types of lamps and fixtures.  You may have a combination of Fluorescent and LED throughout your interior.  This leads to a variety of lamp ratings, color temperatures and energy consumption.   Changing bulbs, as they go out, creates continuous sporadic outages.  In addition, if onsite personnel are changing them, there is no assurance that the replacements are the right type, and wattage for your fixtures, which affects fixture performance and energy consumption.  Aesthetically, the color temperatures may vary, giving you uneven and unattractive lighting.  

A technical survey of your interior space to gather data on your existing lighting components and wiring, is a good starting point to evaluate and plan for an efficient lighting program. Group relamping of fluorescent lighting is important to get the life expectancy of the lamps aligned.  Dividing the yearly hours of operation into the overall life of the lamps, will determine the frequency you will need a future relamp.  The longer the rating on the bulb, the longer the time between relamps.  A lighting professional can help you determine the correct frequency for lighting inspections.

LEDs should be checked even though they have a longer life than fluorescent bulbs.  LEDs may not go out, but their light levels do depreciate.   The rating on an LED is generally determined to be the point at which the light level has depreciated to 70% of its original output.  So if the LED is rated for 50k hours- when it has operated for that amount of time, the light output is greatly impacted.   Yearly light meter readings should be taken as well as inspections of the wiring, power supplies and fixtures.

Cleaning of your lamps and LEDs is an important component of lighting maintenance.  Dirty lamps and modules create lower light levels, greater energy consumption and more heat output, which affects other systems, such as HVAC.

Yearly testing of your emergency lighting systems (90-minute emergency testing) is required and a qualified master electrician must conduct the test.  It can be combined with your yearly cleaning.

Exterior lighting:  

If you are responsible for your exterior building lights and parking lot lights, a lighting maintenance plan is essential.  Exterior lighting is impacted by the natural elements.  

Light poles are also impacted by traffic crashes, which can impact the integrity of the pole, its mounting and its stability, as well as its lighting fixture.    Fixtures need to be cleaned regularley becuase insects, dirt and grime collect on your fixtures.  

Whether your exterior lighting is halogen or LED, inspection, cleaning and fixture/pole repairs are important to maintain a safe environment.  Getting a technical survey of your lighting to document the fixtures and conditions is also important for your exterior.  Light meter readings are especially crucial to monitor the foot candles of walkways and doors, parking lots and security areas (cameras, ATMs, etc).

These include:

  • Monthly or Quarterly Audits
  • Emergency Light Testing
  • Pole and Fixture Repair/Replacement
  • Electrical Repairs
  • Relamping and LED Retrofits
  • At Priority, we offer programs designed to meet your interior and exterior lighting needs.

Contact us to see how our scheduled maintenance plan can bring value to your program.

Julie Lapacka
VP Service Sales