As the days get shorter, it’s more important than ever to make sure your commercial premises remain well lit. Outdoor lighting prevents customers and staff from potential injury (and yourself from a lawsuit), and also protects your business against intruders after dark. Lighting could aid your security surveillance, and even remove or reduce the need for cameras simply by being switched on.
The higher price of more sophisticated lighting technology may seem less appealing to some. However, opting for a cheaper ‘on/off’ or timer switch lights means less protection after hours. Always remember that thieves and trespassers prefer to work under the cover of darkness; they’ll be less likely to enter a well-lit premises.
So what’s out there?
Everyone’s business is unique, and so are their requirements. This means that there are many different types of outdoor security lighting.
- Halogen floodlights – historically the most commonly used floodlights, halogen lights are bright and affordable, making them an ideal choice when trying to keep costs down.
- LED floodlights – whilst slightly pricier than the classic halogen bulb floodlights, LED floodlights use around 85% less power than their halogen counterparts and have a longer lifespan, which is why LED is swiftly overtaking halogen as the most popular bulb for outdoor security lighting.
- Motion Sensor floodlights – Rather than humming away all night, motion sensor switches flick on when they detect movement nearby, and can be fitted to both halogen and LED bulbs. It’s true, they are more expensive than your basic on/off switch but they can save a huge amount of energy. This makes them a wise choice for a long-term investment.
- Solar Powered floodlights – Instead of sourcing their energy from the mains electricity, these lights have their own fitted solar panels: another great way of reducing that energy bill.
- Fluorescent floodlights – Energy efficient and long-lasting, fluorescent bulbs are the most commonly used for High Intensity Discharge lights. Able to throw out a bright wash of light covering a large area, HID lights are perfect for car parks and other wide-open commercial spaces.
Now you’ve got an idea of what’s available, here are a few important things to consider before making a purchase.
Finding the best price vs long term saving
A cheaper halogen bulb might seem more attractive at first glance. But consider the longer lifespan and greater efficiency of LED: without the need to keep replacing them, LED lights often save more money in the long run.
Similarly, combining a motion sensor with a fluorescent bulb is not advisable. Increased switching on and off can affect this particular bulb’s lifespan.
Health & safety vs energy efficiency
This is a difficult but crucial balance to strike when planning your security lighting. Of course, every business owner needs to find the most cost-efficient lighting solution. However, this can’t be at the expense of customer and staff safety. Motion sensors often make the most financial sense, but aren’t the best choice for areas with lots of footfall, in case of an accident.
Another example: fluorescent bulbs contain mercury (a highly toxic substance). This means taking extra care if bulbs are broken with people nearby, and careful waste disposal at the end of the bulb’s lifespan. These costly possibilities could be avoided with a different type of light that may be a better fit for your circumstances.
Need help finding the best option for your business?
The most effective strategy is to book a contractor to survey your premises, who can make a recommendation to suit your particular needs.