Lighting is one of the most significant expenses in operating a building. Typically, lighting is actually the largest cost component of a commercial buildings energy bill.
In comparison to other energy costs, electricity consumed by your existing lighting very likely consumes the most electricity out of all other components in your facility.
Energy efficient LED lighting can have a significant impact on heating and air conditioning loads of your building. If you change out your air conditioning HVAC system first, you will likely have an over sized system.
How Does Lighting Impact Heating and Air Conditioning Loads?
Older lighting systems are major producers of heat. For example, by comparing a 400 watt metal halide to an LED replacement you will see roughly 500 degrees difference.
The metal halide operates at 700+ degrees Fahrenheit compared to the 200 degree LED. This amount of drop will drastically impact your air conditioning loads (may have an impact on your heating load as well depending on your climate)
Most people think that weather is the largest influence on interior air conditioning loads. It’s simply not true though, lighting is the largest source of heat gain inside a commercial building.
While building owners are appreciative of that heat in the winter months, most often it is counterproductive when the hotter months come along. By updating your facility to LED lighting, you will add less heat to a space per unit of light output than inefficient lighting.
When you reduce the overall heat gain in a building, LED lighting reduces the building’s cooling requirements.
Reduced loads mean air conditioning capacity can be used in other areas.
When time comes to replace existing air conditioning HVAC equipment, you should be able to utilize smaller equipment reducing capital expenditures. Future additions may not need updated equipment as you will have freed up capacity in your existing system.
The overall effect on air conditioning HVAC energy use depends on several factors including;
- Type of building
- The climate
- Existing efficiency of air conditioning HVAC equipment
- The size of existing air conditioning HVAC equipment
- How Much Can Energy Efficient Lighting Reduced Your Heating Load?
If you have a large building with large internal loads, and you use much more air conditioning than heating, it is possible for you to see 30-40% reduction in HVAC by updating to an updated, more energy efficient lighting system.
Therefore, each kilowatt-hour (kWh) of reduction in annual lighting use, can equate to an additional .4 kWh reduction in HVAC use by reducing overall air conditioning loads more than it increases required heating energy.
Done properly, an LED lighting upgrade allows for the fastest return on investment (ROI) | Workplace Wellness, Increased Productivity, Reduction in Operating Costs & Carbon Emissions.
Our team of installation experts can recommend the best types of LED Lighting for your facility and provide complete installation service throughout British Columbia.
Request a free on-site energy audit and analysis from Metcalfe Lighting and help your business save in energy and operating costs.
ENERGY STAR® Building Upgrade Manual
Energy Savings and Economics of Advanced Control Strategies for Packaged Air-Conditioning Units