Criteria To Consider When Updating Your Illumination System with LED Luminaires

Lumens are the New Watts

The best way to shop for a LED luminaires is to look for brightness, or lumens, instead of watts. Lumens tell you how bright the luminaire is, and more lumens mean brighter illumination. When replacing a two (2) lamp, T8 32-watt fluorescent luminaire, lumen output is approximately 3800 lumens. Replace it with an LED luminaire that provides a comparable lumen output of at least 3600 lumens.

Heat Buildup – The Number 1 Contributor to Illumination System Failure

LED circuits generate heat inside the vapor tight luminaire and when combined with a high wattage LED driver “intended” to produce more lumens, this thermal combination reduces the overall longevity of the LED luminaire by 40% or more. Every 10oC of operating temperature reduction improves the luminaire’s longevity and doubles its operating life. The “thermally managed” operating temperature inside EPCO’s vapor tight luminaire increases it’s operating life and provides brighter LED circuits.

Note: EPCO operating temperature inside its vapor tight luminaire is less than 122oF/50oC.

Higher Lumen Output Reduces Luminaire Count

An LED luminaire that has higher wattage LED circuits and a LED Driver does not necessarily mean using fewer luminaires in your overall luminaire system. It only means that the “targeted” area receives a higher lumen output but may not compensate for shadows between one luminaire and the next.

Why is the IP Rating Important?

Will the LED luminaire you choose stand-up to a pressure washer’s 3,500psi output or the dust and dirt in your building environment? When water or dust is present in any application, building owners and facility managers should understand the Ingress Performance (IP) ratings to understand how their lighting system will perform in specific conditions.

IP ratings are a universal standard of measuring a luminaire’s resistance to dust and water. IP is defined with two digits such as IP65. The first digit is related to the luminaire’s ability to resist dust, with “6” being the best. The second digit is the luminaire’s ability to resist water, with “8” being the best.

The Cost of LED vs. Fluorescent Luminaires

The initial cost of an LED luminaire is always going to be higher compared to the initial cost of a fluorescent luminaire, and the energy savings between the two luminaires is recovered over time, primarily because the LED luminaire can last longer and consume less energy compared to fluorescent luminaires. LED luminaires can last up to 60 times longer than traditional (sodium vapor and HID luminaires) light sources, which means improved lumen maintenance and fewer labor hours to maintain the illumination system.


Installing a new or retrofitting an existing illumination system is a substantial investment. When selecting an illumination system make sure the manufacturer you select has been in business longer than their stated warranty. 2015 marks Engineered Products Company’s 40th year in business and during this time we have remained fully committed to providing our Distribution Channel Partners and our end-customer, the Electrical Contractors, with the highest quality illumination system solutions with our Standard LED Luminaires.

Engineered Products Company Inc. (EPCO) is the premier brand supplier of specialty products to electrical distributors and contractors. Headquartered in Minnetonka, MN (a suburb west of Minneapolis), EPCO has supported the electrical industry since 1976. EPCO supplies a broad range of standard and unique consumables for commercial, industrial, residential and agriculture buildings.