Putting This All Together
The basic takeaway from all of this is you need far fewer LED lumens than metal halide or HPS lumens.
- Metal Halide bulbs are very bright out of the box, but not so much even after only six months of use.
- LED light is directional. The light goes where it is needed. It is very efficient.
- LED light is high quality light. You need less quantity.
So how much LED Lumens do you need?
Only a photometric can tell you exactly how much you need. But in our 10+ years of selling LED lighting, our general rule of thumb is:
- Indoors: 45,000 to 55,000 lumens (depends on application and mounting height)
- Outdoors: 40,000 to 60,000 lumens (depends on application and mounting height)
By searching for a LED equivalent to a 1000 Watt Metal Halide you can easily find fixtures that output at over 100+ lumens/watt. Especially when you go with quality products from reputable companies, you can reach higher than a 150 lumens/watt output. This will allow you to cut your wattage usage per fixture by 2-3 and sometimes 4 times which will prove to save substantial amounts of energy when you start talking about replacing multiple fixtures.
But What Does “replacing” Consist of?
Replacing can consist of two things: retrofitting or full replacement. The difference is simple, a retrofit kit is just like replacing the light source in the fixture. While on the contrary, fully replacing includes replacing not only the existing light source but the entire fixture. To be able to decide which one is best for you will depend on your facilities’ situation. If your existing fixture shell is good to use and not outdated or falling apart, a retrofit kit will work perfectly. While if they are old, outdated, and need replacing: a full replacement is probably the best option.
Are the LEDs in a retrofit kit as good as a LED fixture
Yes. Despite of what you have heard or been told, there is no reason to think or believe that a retrofit/hid replacement kit won’t perform or last as long as a new fixture. Retrofits don’t always make sense, but they do if you have a significant investment in your fixture or the look of your fixture. Our retrofit kits are warrantied for 10 years, and they have been extensively installed inside a closed sealed fixture in hot locations, like Arizona, Nevada, California and some even in the Middle East.
Keep this in mind: retrofitting is always cheaper because it’s easier to do and it’s not as material-intensive as a full replacement is. So if you can retrofit, go with that over a full replacement!
It is possible to replace a metal halide fixture, that of any wattage (30 on up to 1000+), with LED technology. It can be as simple as retrofitting your existing fixtures or a little more work intensive to fully replace, but both will work.
So, although it may seem hard, confusing, or expensive: the benefits far surpass these common scares that people have when making the consideration of upgrading to a new luminary technology. An investment in LED products will payback in many ways, from less energy usage to higher quality of light that they produce.
Read Part 1 of this post