LED lighting has made major progress in many industries, including grocery stores. Several major grocery chains like Whole Foods, Walmart and Brookshire Brothers have already made the switch to LED lighting. More are sure to follow because no other lighting technology is as cost effective as LEDs.
LED lighting’s superior impact is also attainable for more commercial properties. In recent years, lighting manufacturers have produced an array of LED fixtures that can be retrofitted into existing systems. This means you don’t have to uninstall existing fixtures and lighting accessories to upgrade to LED lighting.
Now that LED lighting retrofits are widely available, the question is whether it’s worth investing in LED technology. For many businesses, the decision is easy because LED lighting offers several advantages over other forms of lighting.
Six Advantages of LED Lighting in Grocery Stores Worth Considering:
LED Lighting Offers A Big Efficiency Advantage To Grocery Stores
Lighting efficiency is a big deal to grocery stores. Most stores rely on high bay fixtures to output bright illumination over a large area, but these fixtures demand a lot of power. According to ENERGY STAR, the typical supermarket spends about $4 on energy costs per square foot of space. That comes out to $200,000 a year on energy costs alone for a 50,000 square foot supermarket. Much of that cost is due to lighting.
Better lighting efficiency means better margins, and this is where LED lighting can make a huge difference. Compared to high-bay metal halides and fluorescent tubes, LED lighting offers greater lamp and system efficiency. That means LED lamps produce more light with every watt of energy (less energy is wasted as heat) and LED systems get more of that light to where it’s most important – to ground level.
LED’s system efficiency alone is enough for many grocery stores to consider a switch, but there are several more cost-saving advantages with LED lighting.
LEDs Last Much Longer Than Other Bulbs, Which Minimizes Maintenance Costs
The typical LED fixture should provide at least 50,000 hours of quality illumination and up to 100,000 hours (or more) in some cases. No other lighting technology even comes close to matching this. A metal halide fixture lasts around 10,000 hours, but it will suffer a noticeable drop in output before it gets to that point. Fluorescent tubes can make it to 20,000 or 25,000 hours, which is better but still not in the same league as LED lights.
With their superior longevity, LED lights do not need to be replaced as often. That’s good for two reasons. One, minimizing replacement frequency also minimizes maintenance costs. Two, to switch out high-bay fixtures, maintenance crews need to bring in a powered lift and a bucket to get the job done. That’s extremely disruptive and potentially unsafe for customers, so frequent lighting maintenance can be a drag on your store’s ability to operate efficiently.
LED Fixtures Are Compatible With Almost All Modern Control Technologies
LEDs are the most modern commercial lights available, so they are compatible with just about any lighting control technology.
For example, grocery store LED lights can be fitted with occupancy sensors like motion detectors. When no one is nearby, the lights automatically switch off to conserve power. When someone walks by, the light kicks on immediately to provide visibility. While this isn’t a viable solution for general illumination purposes, it’s ideal for a grocery store’s frozen section. It’s also a smart choice for restrooms, break rooms and offices.
LED lighting can also be tied to dimmers or timers. Dimmers allow for precise control over output, which is good for aesthetics and customer comfort. Timers are another cost-control mechanism which can be used to power the lights on or off automatically at predefined times.
Poor Color Rendering And Flickering Aren’t An Issue With LED Lights
LED lighting is designed to be reliable to the point where flickering is never an issue, no matter where the LEDs are installed. Further, while LED lighting once lagged behind other lighting options in terms of color rendering, that is no longer the case. Some modern LED fixtures come with a 90+ CRI (color rendering index) rating, which is comparable to halogen.
Accurate color rendering is especially important in grocery stores. High CRI LEDs represent product colors accurately, and since we eat with our eyes first, this is an important consideration. If your tomatoes look vividly red and lettuce vividly green, customers will be more likely to purchase them.
Temperature Is Not A Problem With LED Lighting
LED lighting is unaffected by the range of temperatures you’d find in a grocery store. Compared to other lights, they work extremely well at low temperatures, with zero flickering and loss of output. That makes LED lighting a good option for frozen and refrigerated sections in grocery stores.
LED fixtures also generate close to zero radiant heat, so they can be used in close proximity to cold products and produce without causing issues or spoilage.
LED Lighting Is A Leading Option For Leading Grocery Stores
LED lighting offers immediate returns for grocery stores as soon as it is installed. It produces efficient, reliable and brilliant illumination that will improve how your products look and even how long they last. And with retrofit options on the table, there’s no longer a major hurdle to accessing LED lighting and all of its benefits.