How many lumens do I need from my LED Light? How Bright?

Posted by Sean R on 8/27/2016 to LED Parking Lot Lights
How many lumens do I need from my LED Light?  How Bright?

How many lumens do I need from my LED Light?  How Bright?

Deciding how many lumens is one of the hardest parts of light design.   Too low and you will have an unsafe area that may not be inviting or attractive.   Go too bright and it could hurt your eyes and cost you money in electricity bills.   At LED Light Expert we are always here to help and give you our best advice.   


You don’t need to understand ft. candles or LUX, just the basics

So ft candles or lux, which is just the metric version tells us how much light gets to a given square meter.  If you are installing LED high bay lights up at 30 feet, but even if they are 26,000 lumens, very little of that light may hit the floor or ‘working area’.    There is a whole science called photometrics and most of our lights have IES files, but you just need the basics. 

Think of it in much simpler terms.  If you are doing those warehouse high bay linear lights you need a thousand lumens to make it to the floor.   That way there is an even bright light on the warehouse floor.    The way to get there is to look at lumens, light angle and number of fixtures. 


Basic rules of lighting

Lighting is an amazing science.  There is a whole field devoted to photometrics and the work they do is impressive.   For most applications, it’s not worth the money to design out lighting.   It’s just not cost effective to spends a few thousand when the whole job is less than ten thousand.


High Bay LED Lighting

We usually talk about adequate lighting and bright lighting to give you a range to think about. For example; In high bay LED lighting, we typically tell people that 100watt ufo high bay lights with 13,000 lumens at 90 degrees (our most common option) are good spaced every 12-14 feet at 20 feet high for bright lighting or 15-18 feet apart for adequate lighting.   This give you some things to think about.  In this scenario you are getting a good amount of lumens to the floor, or ideal LUX


LED Parking Lot Lighting

We usually recommend 2 LED Parking Lot Light heads of 20,000 lumens each at about 15-20 feet high.   Space the pole about 20 feet apart.   That is average lighting.  Go brighter and higher if you want your space more inviting.   If you go up to 30 feet and do 2 light heads at 30,000 or 40,000 each, you can space the poles 30-40 feet apart. 


Again, these are just some ideas.   There are so many variables in lighting that you have to decide what your goals are ahead of time.  Decide if you need it adequate or bright.  Determine what your options are with installation.   Can you change poles?  Can you run dimming wire?   Can you change a small section at first to see if you like it?  Doing a little planning on the front end will help you achieve great lighting results. 


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