T8 Lamp Retrofit with LED Lamps – A Field Evaluation Reply

Yesterday I had the opportunity to evaluate the retrofit of traditional T8 fixtures with T8 LED lamps as part of a customer’s facility wide evaluation of lighting upgrades. Multiple similar locations were retrofit using products from multiple suppliers and 2 different technologies, one where T8 LED lamps (15-18W each) with integral driver replace existing lamps and another where each fixture is retrofit with lighting kit and separate LED driver. Fixtures being upgraded in the evaluation included traditional 3-lamp T8 acrylic lensed fixtures in a cleanroom application and the new technologies were selected after a preliminary cost evaluation was completed using simple payback. All of the technologies performed very well by reducing output power by roughly half while providing very good light output in our test cases (between 50 and 80 foot-candles). Some of the benefits of the replacement LED lamps in addition to the energy savings are the relatively low labor cost and long lamp life. Each installation is different (energy cost, light requirements, lighting controls, etc.). But, I would certainly recommend the evaluation of these technologies for anyone looking to upgrade current lighting technologies especially those with 24/7 operations. Lamps run between $22 and $25 each. Retrofit fixture kit costs vary.

2013 California Energy Code Title 24, Part 6: Separation of Electrical Loads Reply

Another requirement of Title 24 is the separation of electrical loads for the purposes of metering or as stated in the code “designed to permit the disaggregated measurement of electrical load energy downstream from the service meter…” although the sub metering itself is not mandatory. These groups include HVAC, lighting, receptacles, water system pumps, elevators and similar, renewable energy sources, car chargers, and some other large loads. The requirements to segregate the loads becomes more strict as service size increases and Table 130.5-B clarifies these requirements. So what this will mean in general is more electrical panelboard hardware and less flexibility in moving around electrical loads. Service metering is also required and these requirements are identified in Table 130.5-A. Of course there are exceptions to these requirements so make sure to check the entire Section 130.5 but overall this section is rather thin at only 1-1/2 pages plus tables so its a quick read. The execution of the requirements is a bit more complex so plan for a bit more thought designing the distribution hardware and layout of equipment during programming and design.

2013 California Energy Code Title 24, Part 6: Controlled Receptacles Reply

The latest edition of California Title 24 has kicked in and brings with it many changes to incorporate into building design. One of these is the requirement for controlled receptacles in private and open offices, lobbies, reception areas, break rooms, conference rooms, copy rooms and hotel guest rooms. These receptacles will be separately identified and will turn off upon area being vacant for period of time similar to the lighting shutoff requirements. Thankfully with a decent lighting control system this is achieved with just a few more devices (power packs or sensors or both) in each area. The controlled receptacles may be part of a ‘half-hot’ duplex which can keep device count from expanding. And lastly, forget using plug-in devices with integral sensors as those will not comply with the code requirement. More on Title 24 to follow…