For any lighting plan to be effective, it has to meet certain basic functions. When it comes to university lighting, the basic needs include illumination for safety, visibility for academic tasks, and overall functional benefit to the bottom line. Here are a few tips on university lighting to help any campus improve their existing illumination.
1. Perform an audit
If you are in charge of the university lighting plan, you should perform an audit annually. Performing an audit will allow you to examine important aspects such as lighting in need of repairs, maintenance follow-up, and opportunities for improvements overall. An audit should also take into consideration the costs of operating the current systems as they are versus areas where there is potential to save on utility costs. An audit should be performed by a professional lighting expert to get the most thorough review.
2. Switch to LED
Regardless of what the audit reveals, most locations would benefit from switching to LED technology over older options like incandescent, halogen, or even fluorescent. LED lamps offer the best return on investment overall even though they cost more initially. An LED lamp has an average lifespan of up to 100,000 hours in certain models which means you won’t need to change bulbs as often. LED also has a better lumen output to wattage consumed ratio, so it is more energy efficient overall to save on utility costs. LED is also better for the environment than comparative options since it doesn’t contain harmful mercury!
3. Install timers
Aside from switching lamps to LED bulbs, installing timers is the biggest way to improve the lighting of your location while saving on utility costs. Timers can be set to turn the lamps on and off at predetermined times of the day to eliminate the possibility of lighting running when unnecessary. Another smart move similar to timers, is the use of occupancy sensors. Occupancy sensors are great for classrooms where leaving a light on when the room is unoccupied can be a common and costly mistake.
4. Consider color temperature in crucial areas
One of the easiest ways to make your lighting plan more effective for students and staff is to examine the color temperature of the lamps. Color temperature should be cool in areas where alertness is required such as classrooms, study areas, and libraries. Warmer temperatures can be used in areas promoting a more relaxed vibe such as dining hall areas or lounge areas.