Reasons to Change to LED Lighting

Reasons to Change to LED Lighting

Improvements have been made to LED technology in the past ten years.  The viability of LED lighting has become much stronger.

As the gap on both continues to narrow, the most common lighting question I still get these days is: Why should I switch to LED lighting? While there are still some uses that I still prefer incandescent lighting for, I have five key reasons for believing every church would benefit in making the switch of their stage lighting to LED fixtures.

1) The Disparity is Narrow

About 10 years ago, when LED Par lights were starting at $500 and conventional Par fixtures were only $100 to 150, I could see why the expense was tough to justify. Now a decade later, we have solid economy LED Par type fixtures that start in the $100 to 150 range, and many actually come close to matching the same output in both brightness and color temperature of their incandescent counterparts.

For many churches, replacing conventional house lights with LED house lights would pay for itself in just two to three years based on the electrical savings alone.

And speaking of color temperature, many, if not most of the LED lighting fixtures available to us today have significantly improved color quality, so LED white actually looks like white and the colors produced by those lights also look fantastic.

2) Lower Power Consumption

I don’t have hard data for you since it depends on the fixture, but almost without exception, when using LED fixtures, you will eliminate a good deal of power consumption which will translate into steady power savings.

Let’s say you usually use (20) 500 watt PAR fixtures for top and set lighting and you can replace that with (20) 50 watt LED fixtures. That equals a savings of 9,000 watts of power, which for the 15 to 30 hours your lights may be on every week, those savings will add up fast.

For many churches, replacing conventional house lights with LED house lights would pay for itself in just two to three years based on the electrical savings alone.

Your stage lighting can also produce similar savings.

3) Low Heat Production

I realize we’re heading into the winter months, where some of us would like our fixtures to warm the room up, but for many across the U.S., our sanctuaries also need to be cooled year-round, because of the heat our lighting produces, along with the people in the room. Switching over just those (20) Par fixtures to LED, could be the difference from a hot day in the desert to a nice 75 degree day.

And as an added bonus, if you like putting fixtures on the stage for up lighting a wall or stage set, you won’t have to worry about a kid (or a drummer) coming on stage and burning themselves on the fixture.

4) Low Maintenance Cost

If you’ve been lighting for any length of time, you’ve had to do the last minute lamp or gel change before service. Lamps cost money, as do gels, and both go out somewhat regularly, creating an ongoing maintenance expense. And if your lights are hard to get to, you may have to rent a lift to make those needed changes. If you have LED fixtures rated for 10,000 hours, you could potentially leave them on for 10-plus years before the LED diodes go bad.

Unless a fan goes bad on your LED fixture, your regular maintenance would cut down to almost nothing, meaning you get to spend your time on ministry, and not on replacing parts.

5) Efficiency – One Fixture, Many Colors

Not long ago, I served as the lighting designer for a large worship conference, and the budget for rental fixtures was tight, so I ended up having to use the dozens of house Par cans quite a bit. There was something like 48 lights distributed above the stage with red, green and blue gels in them. Unless you’re going for the ’80s rock show look, I could have accomplished the same color wash with 12 good LED fixtures, increasing my efficiency and lowering the amount of stuff in the air.

With LED, generally speaking, I can do much more with less.

LED fixtures aren’t right for every potential setup, but for most stage lighting, they have become both a fantastic option and the right choice to make. And with the continuing advancement in LED technology, they’re starting to become a great choice for moving lights as well.

They provide a highly efficient, highly effective, and low maintenance solution to lighting and they offer a ton of flexibility. There’s a lot to love about LED lighting, if you haven’t considered making the switch, now may be the time.

Article Courtesy of WFX, Duke Dejong