As a business owner who wants to optimize their spending on the lighting infrastructure in their commercial premises, you should buy lighting devices that suit your business needs to a T and are also cost- and energy-efficient. On the other hand, you should also keep in mind that you should install devices at your business that are approved and hold a lighting certification.
Various industrial regulatory bodies have laid down rules regarding the safety standards and working conditions to be maintained in commercial spaces. There are also guidelines regarding the lighting devices to be installed. Failure to adhere to these guidelines will invite penalties. As a business owner, it is your responsibility to stick to these guidelines and use only those lighting devices that have been duly certified by trusted bodies. Knowing about the important lighting certifications will help you make the best buying decision.
Given below are six lighting certification logos that every business owner should be aware of. Once you know them, you will be able to shop confidently for certified lighting products.
DLC - Design Lights Consortium
The DesignLights Consortium (DLC) is a lighting certification issued for commercial LED lights based on their color rendering capabilities, light distribution and output, lumen maintenance, longevity or the ability to withstand stress, and the duration of the warranty period. The certification is issued for lighting products like retro-fit kits, commercial and industrial-grade lighting panels, roadway luminaires, high bays, and wall packs.
The DLC lighting guide lays down strict operational regulations for a variety of commercial LED products. LED manufacturers have to test their products with accredited independent laboratories to obtain DLC certifications.
CEE - Consortium for Energy Efficiency
The CEE (Consortium for Energy Efficiency) has its own exhaustive list of performance and operational safety and efficacy guidelines for a range of commercial lighting products like lamps and ballasts. These guidelines update regularly to include the latest energy-efficient wattage lighting fixtures that hit the market. Many jurisdictions across the United States make it mandatory that commercial spaces should install T8 (Low-Watt T8 or High-Performance T8) ballasts that have been certified by the CEE. Some of the critical CEE guidelines for T8 ballasts are that these devices must have a power factor of at least 95 percent, have a Class A sound rating, and shall not contain PCBs.
Title 24 (California) Lighting Certification
Apart from the lighting performance and safety guidelines set by nationally-recognized bodies, several jurisdictions across the United States formulate their own regulations for business owners to follow while operating within the state limits. For instance, the California Energy Commission has laid down the Title 24 lighting guidelines to help business owners find out the lighting devices in the market that are most energy-efficient. The Title 24 guidelines receive regular updates to keep pace with the developments in the market and the latest energy-efficiency insights.
The ENERGY STAR certification for electrical appliances and fixtures is one of the most well-known. Business owners also recognize this logo when they want to save on their energy bill. ENERGY STAR-certified lighting devices use almost a quarter of energy less than conventional bulbs. They also last between 10,000 and 50,000 hours.
This means that you are spared the costs of replacing these bulbs often and can use the money saved to fund business-critical ventures. These lights also produce a consistent amount of light throughout their lifespans. Some ENERGY STAR rated bulbs come equipped with motion sensors. This makes them ideal for the lobby area of your office or hallways and parking lots.
The longevity and performance of CFLs and LED lights encourage many business owners to install these lamps within their business. Checking the FTC's Lighting Facts® certification is a fool-proof way to ensure that the devices you buy perform optimally. There are only a small number of labs that may perform the tests on the lights that receive the label. The certification is issued after testing light bulbs for their brightness, energy consumption, lifespan, and light appearance.
The Lighting Facts® lighting certification makes it mandatory that bulb manufacturers display the lumens value on the packaging. Lumens is a measure of the brightness of light the bulb emits. They use this instead of watts because it shows the bulbs actual effectiveness. Watts is a measure of the energy the bulb consumes during a specific time period. Manufacturers have to also display information like the approximate energy cost of using the bulb in a year. In case of CFLs, the manufacturers have to display the amount of mercury present in the bulb on the packaging.
Dark Sky - International Dark Sky Association (IDA)
The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) is the premier body that researches light pollution. Their main interest is restoring the natural night environment before artificial light sources came around. The Dark Sky certification by the IDA is issued under the Fixture Seal of Approval (FSA) program.
The IDA issues the Dark Sky certificate to outdoor lighting fixtures that lessen glare and light trespass. The source of light in such lamps has a shield above it. The light output never projects to more than 90 degrees in the vertical plane. If you are an environmentally-conscious business owner, buy the fixtures for your commercial space after checking the Dark Sky certification.
The above six lighting certification agencies help you buy a lighting device that delivers stellar performance. They help you optimize your investment and resources while being eco-friendly.
Now that your are familiar with what a lighting certification means, you can shop confidently for lighting products.