A recent Wall Street Journal article showed that lower maintenance costs are driving companies like Walmart, GNC, and Caesars Entertainment to retrofit their specialized lighting fixtures to LEDs. Due to the long life span of LED’s, the maintenance cost for the fixture is dramatically decreased, putting the total cost savings on par with other light sources.
“If you think about a 20- to 40-foot tall parking lot light pole, you need a bucket truck and electrician to replace those lamps every two years. Now, these will last us 10 to 12 years,” said Charles Zimmerman, Walmart’s vice president for international design and construction. “The big payback number is on the maintenance.”
A case study conducted in 2009 by the U.S. Department of Energy on a Walmart parking lot in Leavenworth, Kansas showed that energy savings for LEDs were not enough to offset the higher purchase price. In the future, as LED prices decrease, this will change. However, for now, it’s lower maintenance expenses that are allowing companies to recoup the upfront costs.
“Instead of replacing a bulb seven times a year, now you’re talking about not touching a bulb for four or five years,” said Eric Dominguez, Caesars Entertainment’s director of energy services.
Story and image source: WSJ: The Math Changes on Bulbs