Understanding Lumens vs Watts
As LED professionals we encourage our customers to communicate lighting decisions in terms of Lumen output, and not focus specifically on the wattage of the luminaire. Understanding that watts are a part of the process in your retrofit analysis, having the correct amount of lumens is what’s going to make you and your customers say “WOW!” Lumenefficacy is defined as a measure of visible light output at the luminaire. Just as important as understanding Lumens you should understand that LED lighting is directional lighting. For example a fluorescent T8 tube might emit 4000 lumens but more than half of the light shines up into the fixture or reflects or just shine randomly. An LED T8Tube shines all light in a designed direction. A LED T8 emitting 2000 Lumens will have higher Foot Candle readings at 8’ than a fluorescent T8 emitting 4000 lumens.
A great indicator of the quality of an LED luminaire and chip you are purchasing is the relationship between lumens and watts, how many lumens are you getting per watt of energy used? This number can vary widely across the industry, we believe that 100 lumens per watt is the minimum output to be considered a quality luminaire, therefore weprimarily spec lights that meet this standard.