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What Are Troffer Lights?
Troffer lighting is a terminology that is normally used to define indoor lighting fixtures that are mounted on a ceiling grid or within a ceiling. Because of the way they are installed, these lights are also called recessed troffer lights. A troffer can be square or rectangular in shape and usually fits into a dropped ceiling grid (2'x4', 2'x2', or 1’x4’). These lights are a staple of commercial and industrial lighting and are typically used in hospitals, offices, classrooms, and other workplaces. Troffer lights are usually recessed into the ceiling in a grid pattern to offer bright, even light. But some troffers allow for surface mounting.
For a long time, fluorescent troffers were used in drop ceilings. Many commercial applications contained troffer fixtures that were designed to accommodate regular fluorescent lamps such as T5, T8 or T12 bulbs. However, these light sources are inefficient and have many downsides. This is why LED troffers and panels quickly gained popularity from the moment they were introduced into the market. LED lighting fixtures that replace fluorescent troffers include LED troffers, troffer panels, LED troffer retrofit kits, LED flat panel retrofits, and LED tubes (which replace fluorescent tubes in existing light fixtures).
Why LED Troffers Are a Better Choice than Fluorescent Troffers
According to the United States Department of Energy, in 2010, 4 out of 5 lamps in business properties were fluorescents, and most of them were fitted in troffer fixtures. But the ever-progressing technology of LEDs poses a big challenge for fluorescent lamps. The Department of Energy estimates that between 2010 and 2012, the sales of LED troffers had increased from 40,000 pieces to almost 700,000 pieces. LEDs have revolutionized the lighting industry and currently, the sales of fluorescent troffers have become almost non-existent. The troffer lighting market is now the realm of LEDs.
Benefits of LED Troffers
The United States Department of Energy estimates that LED troffer replacements help save up to 80% on energy costs compared to fluorescent troffers. The rated life of LEDs is typically 50,000 hours and can go up to 100,000 hours.
Because LED troffer lights have a longer lifespan than fluorescent troffers, they lower lighting maintenance costs significantly. LED troffers can be exactly what you need to reduce the electricity consumption of your building or facility.
Let's look at the wattage for both fluorescent and LED troffers. A 2x4 fluorescent troffer, which is used in many applications, can use up to 160 watts – a single fixture. However, a LED troffer that replaces a 160-watt fluorescent troffer only uses 30-50 watts. This means that if you replace fluorescent troffers with LED troffers, you can enjoy a 50-80% reduction in cost savings.
Since we want you to have a better understanding of how much you'll save when you get rid of your fluorescent troffers, let us put it in dollars. By converting your lighting to LED, you may save up to $81 for every fixture (every year) on energy costs alone. If you have a large facility with many fluorescent lights installed, there’s no doubt that you will save a lot of money.
New generation LED troffers have lighting controls integrated or built-in emergency backup to make your job easy. And the good news is that the price of LED troffers has gradually gone down over time. As of 2018, basic LED troffers and flat panels were being sold at prices very similar to those of fluorescent troffers.
Better Lighting Performance
While lowering energy costs and maintenance costs is crucial to keeping organizations efficient, it is very important to make sure that the performance of the lighting is not compromised. LEDs produce higher quality light and they are in a class of their own. LED troffers to distribute light very differently compared to fluorescent troffers and provide a more even foot candle on the ground below. In addition, their optics can be varied so as to meet foot candle requirements from virtually any height.
Another important thing worth noting is that LED troffers come in a wide range of color temperatures: from warm to cool (including 3000K, 3500K, 4100K, 5000K, and 6500K).
The high correlated color temperature of LED troffers also gives end users the ability to choose a specific look for any given space. LED lights also have a high color rendering index which ensures that people working under the LED troffers are able to clearly see whatever they are working on.
Another great benefit of LED troffers is that they work excellently with dimmers. This feature is of great benefit to end users because they are able to change the operating conditions of the lights after their LED conversion project. They can adjust the LEDs to fit the specific usage needs of individual rooms without compromising the functionality of the lights themselves.
As we earlier mentioned, only fluorescent lamps that have been specially manufactured to work with dimmers do so. Pairing fluorescent troffers with dimmers when they do not have the ability to work with dimmers may not only affect their functionality, it may present a serious fire hazard.
Choose the Best LED Troffers for Your Application
When looking for LED troffer lights that will be perfect for your property, there are many ways to go about it.
The most important thing you need to do is narrow down your search. You can do this by choosing the light fixtures that best suit your space – in regards to sizing and mount. Once you have narrowed down your search and have identified the right models for your application, the next step is to choose LED troffers with a style that matches the overall style of your application.
Since voltages range between 120 and 277 volts, you should find the right hardware for your lighting system. Troffer lights normally have varying quantities of lamps, which means you can get the right amount of lighting for any application – whether you want to light up a large warehouse floor or a small office hallway. LED troffers provide even, powerful lighting in any amount of space and are a popular choice for many industrial and commercial applications. The powerful light they provide does not cause eye fatigue or eye strain and ensures every inch of space is illuminated without glare.