ICE CO. SPOTLIGHT

The Spotlight will highlight topics spanning industry news, safety, product and equipment reviews, codes and much more! We look forward to a dialogue with you.

The Incandescent Light bulb Phase Out

Thursday, January 02, 2014

Last week’s blog discussed LED energy efficient bulbs and the cash savings and benefits from purchasing them. This week we are going to discuss what has happened on January 1, 2014, that will change the way you buy your light bulbs. 


Many people love the fact that they can buy a light bulb for only $0.99. Surprisingly though, that cheap light bulb will cost you around $7.00 a year to burn!


The new bulbs that you will have to buy will be more expensive than $0.99, but will only cost around $1.00 a year to burn. That means you will save $6.00 a year per bulb. In the end, your energy efficient light will pay for itself.


 


You will now have three choices when buying light bulbs. The three choices are limited to LED, Halogen, and CFL’s. 

 


Pcmag.com describes each bulb and their attributes.

“Halogen bulbs act most like incandescent bulbs, and have very similar energy profiles. A halogen bulb will last only about 1,000 hours and consume approximately 43 watts for the equivalent of a 60-watt incandescent light. They're the least expensive of the non-incandescent light bulbs, available for approximately $1.25 per bulb. Their per-bulb economy has a trade-off of energy economy, as they use over two-thirds as much energy as incandescent bulbs.”



“CFL bulbs offer a great combination of efficiency and economy, but they have their own drawbacks. CFL bulbs are available for about $2, can last 10,000 hours, and consume 13 watts for the equivalent of a 60-watt incandescent bulb. However, fluorescent light is much cooler than incandescent or halogen light, making it appear more blue than white to eyes used to the warm, orange-tinted light of incandescent bulbs. Many users simply dislike how CFLs look. CFL bulbs are also the hardest to dispose of safely, as most contain a trace of mercury and must be recycled at a proper facility.”



“LED bulbs are the most expensive up front, but offer the most efficiency in the long term. They can cost between $12 and $50 each, but they can last 25,000 hours and consume 10 watts for the equivalent of a 60-watt incandescent bulb. LED bulbs can have adjustable colors, and don't have any toxic chemicals that need to be disposed of safely.


In the long run, LED bulbs are the superior choice, but they're going to remain the most expensive one because of the numerous electronic components used in each bulb. According to Mertz, LED bulbs might reach a low price of $4 to $6, but they simply won't dip below that or anywhere near the price of halogen or CFL bulbs because of the cost of the parts. “


Of course, you can still buy the incandescent bulbs until they run out at your local hardware store. 

There is a lot of controversy over the phase-out, but if you look over the facts, you can end up saving a lot of money.


Click here for more information similar to this chart.

Source - Pcmag





Energy Efficient Products – Switching to LED Bulbs

Thursday, December 26, 2013


You have probably heard of energy efficient products before, maybe from a friend or neighbor bragging about how they saved money on their electricity bill from using these same products.

If you are like me, you are skeptical.  Can I really save money? How much? Which products should I buy? Are they all the same? 

 

This week I’m going to answer some of these specific questions, and what you are about to read, might just surprise you.

My husband has a passion for his reef aquariums in our home. This Christmas he wanted to spend a decent amount of money on some new LED light fixtures for ONE of his reef tanks. By a decent amount, I mean $600.00! For lights?

Of course, knowing my reaction, he had a couple benefits ready to unload on me. After he rambled on about how awesome they will look, he finished off his persuasion by telling me they will save us money on our electric bill and future replacement bulbs. Save? Now we’re talking!

The accounting major in me wanted the numbers, details, all of the facts. After a little digging I found out that the t5 florescent light bulbs will need to be replaced every six months, (depending on usage) at an average of $150.00. That is already an annual cost of $300.00 a year, without including the cost of electricity.

The average LED light will last around 50,000 hours. That means that the LED light will pay for its self in less than one year. The LED lights also require less energy to run all day long. 


Switching to an average perspective, I calculated the normal cost for a regular 60w house hold bulb. The results were pretty astounding. Let’s say you have a 60w bulb that runs for 4 hours a day and cost $1.44 to purchase.

The LED with the same light output only runs 7w and cost $11.99. At a rate of $13.5 cents per kilowatt hour, I would save $11.89 per year on electricity and pay for the bulb in .93 years.

The initial cost for LED lights may be more, but as I have proved to you today, they will save you money long-term. 


IES

Monday, September 16, 2013

Jeff Kramer of Phillips demonstrates (in a presentation posted on the website of the Illuminating Engineering Society’s Portland, Oregon Section), that LEDs are taking over, with this picture of a beautiful bridge in Sao Paolo, Brazil:

 

And speaking of the Illuminating Engineering Society (“IES”), the IES “is the recognized technical authority on illumination. For over 100 years; its objective has been to communicate information on all aspects of good lighting practice to its members, to the lighting community, and to consumers, through a variety of programs, publications, and services.” The IES has an informative interactive website, Discover Lighting, An Introduction to Lighting, found here.

 

Enjoy exploring their website!

ICE Co. Electric

Power. Current. Grounded

 


Recessed Lighting

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Chances are you have recessed lighting somewhere in your house. If you don't we should have a difference conversation about installing some for you. BUT assuming you already have it, there's a possibility that the trims are old, dusty, the wrong color, possibly broken. That is not even touching on the likely worn & yellowed light bulbs manufactured in 1910 that ought to be replaced as well. Sound about right?

What if there existed a place where qualified, customer service oriented, kind and creative people combined forces and provided services such as recessed lighting upgrades for fair and honest prices? We think if you knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that these services existed you would be pretty excited about it.

Electricity can be intimidating can't it? To the point where at times you waited for someone else to change the light bulb because you didn't want to get zapped right? Well, all joking aside, we would be happy to come take a look at your existing can lighting and propose a new trim, lamp and dimmer switch to match your existing can lights. LED inserts are more affordable now too as the market is being saturated with new products.

Finding you an affordable retrofit solution is as easy as taking down existing information, sourcing new product, sending you the quote, ordering product and installation. No sweat... You get a fresh look, possible energy savings, and a range of dimming too.

For your visual pleasure see photos of such a retrofit below.

 

Above is the inside of the existing 6" can light housing.

 

Above is the existing trim.

 

The scenario above uses a new standard trim but has an LED lamp. 

 

This LED Insert shown above has a smooth frosted lens over the LED's. Its a really clean look.

 

Another LED style insert shown above. See how the lamp and the trim are one piece?

Realistically, there are several additional styles of LED lighting that can upgrade any home, and we've been impressed with the dropping prices.

Trying out your new look in one room is a great place to start.
Thanks for checking in...

ICE Co. Signing Out

Power. Current. Grounded. 


Lutron Lighting Control

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Lutron Commercial Light Control

 

Ready to feel liberated? Rid your next commercial project of, dare I say, wiring… Well, hold on a minute, we don’t want to encourage too many wireless features (we would be out of a job pretty quick). However, the commercial solutions Lutron Lutron Website provides for switching, occupancy sensing, vacancy detecting, and programming are 100% cool, and 100% wireless.

 

Recently we attended a Contractor Workshop through North Coast Electric Website in which we learned the ins and outs of the available wireless solutions. Not only that, they also touched on green design, incentive programs, the power savings and increased lamp life of using dimmers, & solar fabrics.

 
Ceiling Mounted Sensor Above

Do you know the difference between, an occupancy sensor and a vacancy sensor? Well, as you may have experienced an occupancy sensor detects motion and turns the light fixtures on, and can time out with a timer setting after there is no more motion sensed.  With a vacancy sensor, a person can walk into the room, and they must turn the lights on manually but when they leave the room the timer setting will set in and the lights will automatically turn off after a set period of time. Now that you understand the difference between the two, we bet you can come up with a project or area this would be useful.  

 

Wall Mounted Sensor Above.

Why go wireless in a switching scenario? Well, as a customer you pay less for the installation because there is no wiring between the switch and the light fixtures, and the end user has more options for changing the layout of a space after the fact with no worry of needing to relocate wiring in the walls for the new switching locations. Still scratching your head? Essentially there are “receivers” which come in a few forms but they connect to the electrical load for example they can be mounted to the end of a run of light fixtures all tied together and they listen for direction (whether to turn the lights on or off). There are also “transmitters” which take inventory of a room and communicate ::wirelessly:: with the receiver if motion is detected etc. Another type of transmitting device is an adjuster… this essentially is a wireless switching location; it can be wall mounted, hand held, or a tabletop mount. It also transmits to the receiver giving it further direction for example dimming.

 

If we lost you somewhere in there, here is another way to look at it. Are you looking to have more types of control over a space that has changing needs or a regular or irregular basis? Do you have an area with a lot of natural light during ½ of the day and no way to dim only the lights along the window wall? Are you at the mercy of your contractors cost each time switching wiring needs to be relocated? If yes to any of these questions, ask us about these wireless solutions for your next project.

 

One last worry to put to rest. Lutron really does a fantastic job of testing all their products, which includes their batteries.  Every battery has a 10 year guarantee. It’s natural to feel concerned that a battery will fail and then all of a sudden the lights don’t work- But there is actually a warning system in place with a glowing red light helping to indicate when a batteries life is with in a certain percentage of drained. What more can you ask for?

 

Thanks to Lutron for your product presentation and we look forward to being able to use this product line in our next project.

 

ICE Co. Signing Out

Power. Current. Grounded.


Lighting The Spatial Envelope

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Portland Event Spotlight

Feb 20, 2013

 

The Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) presented “Lighting the Spatial Envelope” by Dr. Robert Davis yesterday downtown at the World Trade Center.

 

ICE Co. supports continued education and growth development in the electrical industry. We attended this lunch event hosted by the IES and learned about not only the benefits of lighting the spatial envelope, but how lighting can affect the overall quality of the environment, and techniques that can be used to translate these ideas.

 

In essence the event suggested that lighting engineers, designers, and all those who plan for lighting solutions should be more creative in their efforts. Sure, there are lighting levels that need to be met as a standard, but rather than looking only at the plan view of any given project when laying out the lighting design, would it not make more sense to also think about the users experience? Walk through the space, utilize elevations and perspective to visualize how a user would transition and be lead through the spaces.

 

The presentation was backed by a number of studies ultimately indicating that lighting is extremely powerful. The analogy was made that people are like moths always guided toward the light when given the opportunity. With the understanding that the use of light and dark is very influential it would be a waste not to focus efforts on integrating the lighting into the design further enhancing and coherency of the project, while still meeting the standard light level suggestions.

So readers, our suggestion to you is the next building you walk into take a look at the lighting. Is it telling the story from the plan view? It is telling the story with regards to other aspects of the design? Do you feel led from one place to the other by signage alone? Reflect on your experiences in buildings where it flows and everything feels in its proper place. Those are the buildings where the lighting and whole building solutions have been considered together. Those spaces are harmonious, and whole.

For more information on the IES.  IES Website Here

 

For the Litecontrol blogs written by Dr. Robert Davis-Litecontrol Blog Here

 

For more on how lighting influences way finding. Litecontrol Video Posts

Thanks for checking in on us!
ICE Co. Signing Out

Power. Current. Grounded.




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