Commercial Lighting Tampa Florida

LED Christmas Lights Give You The Power To Save

DUNMORE, Pa. — Heading into the holiday season means your electric bill is about to spike, especially if you’re trying to pull a Clark Griswold. We spoke with a couple of experts at Jerry’s For All Seasons in Dunmore to help save you a couple of bucks on your electric bill this year.

“The best thing that you can do, the most cost-effective and energy-efficient thing is to purchase and use LED lights,” said Alana Roberts, PPL regional affairs director.

“Lawn ornaments all come in LED. The tree toppers, stars, they’re all LED. Virtually anything that comes incandescent now comes in LED,” said jerry Longo, owner of Jerry’s For All Seasons.

Those LED bulbs aren’t just cost-effective. They’re built to last, too.

“They last for years and years and years. The screw-in C7, C9, they have a 20-year life,” Longo said.

If you’re still using incandescent bulbs you can still find ways to save.

“If you’re using a timer on your lights, that’s a good way to save, too. If you’re going to run your lights 24/7 even when it’s light out and you can’t see them, you’re definitely using more electricity,” Roberts.

Roberts also has some advice if you have one of those giant blow-up Santas.

“Those inflatables are awesome. When I go around looking at lights, I like to see them, but they’re probably the least energy-efficient item in your holiday display, so consider that your splurge item,” Roberts said.

PPL officials remind you to stay safe while putting up your lights by being mindful of electrical lines if you’re working outside, and not overloading outlets inside.

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Happy Thanksgiving 2019!!!

Wishing your family a Safe and Happy Thanksgiving from our family at Commercial Lighting Tampa!

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Thank you Veterans!!

We would like to thank all of our Armed Forces for everything you do. Thank You!!

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Incandescent Light Bulbs Stink (and Other Hard Truths)

Don’t take pride in inefficient appliances.

The other day, one of the obnoxious little incandescent light bulbs in my bathroom went out. Every time I run out of the damn things, I have to take an old one to the store with me to find a match or spend 20 minutes hunting around online to figure out exactly what kind they are. I took the latter route this time; turns out the shot bulb had a “globe” shape with a “candelabra” base.

This kind of bulb, as it happens, is currently caught up in a dispute over changing environmental standards. So while most people would have ordered some new bulbs and gotten on with their day, I got to thinking about how we regulate the various resource-sucking appliances around our homes.

Back when the government banned incandescent light bulbs — forcing us to use those awful swirly things for a while before the far-superior LEDs came around — it exempted goofy-shaped bulbs like the ones in my bathroom. Indeed, that fixture is the only one in the house that still has incandescents in it, because it loses a bulb only once a year or so, and in the past I had trouble finding reasonably priced, dimmable LEDs in the right size. But as new options are gradually becoming available, including the LED six-pack I ended up buying this week, the Obama administration had planned to extend the ban to new light-bulb types, effective in 2020.

President Trump is basically canceling that expansion of the ban, and some lefty activist groups might sue. (Stop me if you’ve heard this story before.) I support Trump’s move. I prefer to let market forces, not regulation, drive changes in what products are available. But I’m also frustrated by the conservative rhetoric in these debates, which frequently takes the form of outright defense of wasteful products.

So I’ll come out and say it: Incandescent light bulbs suck. We shouldn’t ban them, but no one should use them voluntarily, either. Their sole purpose is to emit light, but 90 percent of the energy they use creates heat.

When you replace an incandescent bulb with an LED, the electricity savings can pay for the bulb in a matter of months. Running an incandescent 60-watt bulb for five hours a day costs more than $10 over the course of a year, and LEDs cut that price tag by about 85 percent. Lesser-used bulbs will take longer to pay for themselves, but they still will, many times over, before they burn out. If you’re taking pride in using incandescent bulbs, you’re taking pride in losing money and harming the environment at the same time.

The same dynamic can be seen in debates over all sorts of other technological advances that improve the efficiency of a product, increasing its up-front purchase price and sometimes making it marginally less effective, but saving consumers money in the not-so-long run. Rather than just saying people should be allowed to waste their own money on the less-efficient, older version of the product if they want, many on the right actually defend that version as superior. (See the furor over whether the one-hour “quick” cycles on modern dishwashers are effective on heavily soiled dishes, and whether we need to loosen standards so these contraptions can hose our plates down with maximum speed and aggression: Make dishwashers great again!)

And you know what? Even regarding that libertarian point that people should be allowed to waste their own money, which I wholeheartedly endorse, two big concessions are in order.

First, when you use electricity, you’re not just driving up your own electricity bill. You’re also harming the environment, because you’re requiring power plants to make more power and emit more carbon. Similar problems attend to other resources like water.

Second, people really do make a lot of dumb and short-sighted decisions. Some will save money in the short run even if over time a product that burns less energy would save more. Others don’t even pay attention to how much a product will cost them to operate, focusing only on the initial price tag. Sometimes, in other words, paternalism can work in a certain sense, whether those of us with libertarian inclinations like it or not.

The way to address these problems is not, in my view, to ban specific inefficient products. Instead, you could address climate-change externalities through a revenue-neutral carbon tax, which would make sure that people who use incandescent bulbs pay to offset the harm they’re causing while still allowing them to use incandescents if they want. Such a policy would also avoid targeting small aspects of our energy consumption (lighting is just 6 percent of residential electricity use) and hit everything that emits carbon equally, so we’re not eliminating 60-watt bulbs while ignoring my brain-rotting, 150-watt PlayStation 4.

Similarly, if we want to make sure people are fully aware of how much money they’re wasting, we can require bigger and more prominent warnings about annual energy costs on products like light bulbs, rather than banning the ones we don’t like. We could also bake some of the carbon costs into the price of the bulb itself.

But I have to admit it’s not completely crazy to see all this the other way around: If we’re not, realistically, going to have a carbon tax in the foreseeable future, one can argue that we should regulate energy use in other ways instead — and that regulations that help the environment while saving consumers money are the least objectionable way to do this.

In the end, I’d prefer to have the freedom to get whatever light bulbs I want. But no one should pretend it actually makes sense to buy an obsolete product that wastes your money every time you turn it on — and needlessly damages the atmosphere to boot.

REF: National Review

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Labor Day 2019

Wishing everyone a safe and fun Labor Day weekend! Our thoughts are with you and the communities who may be impacted by Hurricane Dorian. We hope you stay safe.

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Edison didn’t invent them, but light bulbs have a fascinating 200-year history

REF: CNBC

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Think you know how a lightbulb works? Wait until you see this GE how-to video.

How many lamp owners does it take to change a high-tech lightbulb?

Actually, it may be more complicated than you’d think — and make you miss the good old days when all you had to do was screw it in.

But rest assured that the people at General Electric have put together an instructional video to show you how to troubleshoot the C by GE lightbulbs, and all that’s required is knowing how to count.

First, according to the narrator, turn off the lightbulb for five seconds.

Then turn it on for eight seconds.

Then turn it off for two seconds.

On for eight more seconds. Off for two more seconds. On for eight seconds. Off for two seconds. On for eight seconds. Off for two seconds. On for eight seconds. (Gasp!) Off for two more seconds.

Now turn it on, and it should work.

If not, maybe you missed a second or two somewhere. It’s unclear how much of an effect that would have, but GE does recommend counting using the “Mississippi” method — one Mississippi, two Mississippi, three Mississippi and so on.

At this point, you may be reaching a breaking point. If so, try a simple breathing exercise: Breathe in for four seconds. Hold your breath for four seconds. Exhale for four seconds.

The C by GE smart bulbs are Bluetooth-enabled, allowing users to set a schedule for their lights and control them with their voices, among other things. GE Lighting posted the tutorial on YouTube this year to show users how to troubleshoot by returning to factory settings.

But the three-minute video appears to have gained widespread attention this week after it was shared on Reddit and Twitter. It has since drawn hundreds of comments from people both mocking GE for its long-winded instructions as well as applauding it for its unintended comedy.

“This video made me forget about my soulless existence and feel alive for 8 seconds, then dead for 2 seconds, then alive for 8 seconds, then dead for 2 seconds, then,” one person commented on YouTube.

“I’m seriously hoping this is a parody,” one person tweeted. “Because, if it’s not, the GE smart bulb team should be charged with violating the Geneva Convention. This is torture.”

Another wrote: “I almost want to buy this lightbulb to see whether these instructions are real.”

Asked whether the video was intended to be comical, Mary Ann Milo, a spokeswoman for GE Lighting, said only that the company created it to help consumers reset the C by GE bulbs.

“We are aware that the current reset process for our smart bulbs is not ideal. We are working on simpler methods to reset products. We appreciate our consumers’ patience in the meantime,” Milo said in a statement Thursday to The Washington Post.

The tutorial also provides instructions for resetting a version of the lightbulb equipped with older software.

The process is slightly different for this one: Turn off the bulb for five seconds. On for eight seconds. Off for two seconds. On for two seconds. Off for two seconds. On for two seconds. Off for two seconds. On for two seconds. Off for two seconds. Turn on for eight seconds. Off for two seconds. On for eight seconds. Off for two seconds. And then turn it on one more time.

Thomas Edison may have just rolled over in his grave.

REF: The Washington Post

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Memorial Day 2019

Take the time this Memorial Day to support, honor and remember all of those who serve and have served. Wishing everyone a safe and joyful Memorial Day weekend from Commercial Lighting Tampa.

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Pick the best LED light bulb for every room in your house

The right light for the right room matters. Here are our top tips.

Light bulbs have an enormous, everyday impact on the way our homes look and feel, and with a flood of new LED bulbs filling the lighting aisle, you’ve got more options than ever. But how do you pick the right lights for the job? The trick is to think about how you typically put light to use in the different rooms in your home. That, more than anything, will dictate your lighting needs.

For instance, you might benefit from an extra-bright bulb in your favorite reading lamp, but prefer a gentler, more candlelike glow from the lamp at your bedside.

To that end, here are some room-specific tips to help you zero in on the right lights for your living space. Where appropriate, I’ve also included links to buy some of the top bulbs from our tests — please note that CNET may get a share of revenue from those purchases.

If you have high ceilings, you’ll want floodlights that shine nice and bright in a single direction.

Lots of height? Make it bright
If you have rooms with high ceilings — an entryway, for instance, or maybe a staircase with overhead lights up above — you’ll want to prioritize brightness in your light bulbs. After all, the higher up your light bulbs are, the brighter they’ll need to be in order to light up the room.

The most common bulbs for overhead lighting are BR30-shaped floodlights. The “BR” stands for “bulging reflector,” and it means that the light inside the bulb sits above a reflective bowl, sort of like a little satellite dish. Screw a bulb like that up into your ceiling, and that bowl will catch all of the upward cast light, then reflect it back down and out the bottom, which bulges outward to cast the widest possible pool of light across the room. It’s the same trick your car’s headlights use to cast as much light as possible out in front of you as you drive.


Let’s look at your LED floodlight options

You’ve got plenty of BR30-shaped LED options in the lighting aisle. The most common among them are 65-watt replacement bulbs that typically put out about 650 lumens of brightness each. That’s a good, average number, and fine for average-height ceilings with at least a few bulbs shining overhead. Among the ones I’ve tested, 65-watt replacement floodlights from Cree and Philips are the two I’d recommend. They’re good values, they’re highly efficient (each draws less than 10 watts), they work well with dimmer switches and — most important for overhead lighting — they’re both nice and bright, each putting out comfortably more than 700 lumens.

If your ceilings are higher than average, or if you’ve got fewer bulbs shining overhead than you’d like, then look for 100-watt replacement BR30 LEDs that bump the brightness up even further.

Dimmability means versatility for your living room and bedroom
Some rooms serve just one or two basic functions, but other rooms get used in all sorts of ways. For instance, you might use your living room for watching TV, reading books, playing board games with the kids, or any other number of activities. Rooms like that can really benefit from lights that can adapt to whatever’s going on.


You can dim smart lights like this $15 Philips Hue White LED nice and low without any flicker or buzz.

The old-fashioned way to do it is to use a mix of different lamps and fixtures that serve different purposes — a reading lamp beside your favorite armchair, overhead lights for board game night, everything off when you’re watching a movie, and so on. That’s all well and good, but it limits you to a binary, “on/off” lighting mentality.

The better approach? Give yourself a full spectrum of lighting possibilities by making sure all of those lights can dim.

Upgrading your light switches to dimmer switches is one way to do it (and not nearly as intimidating as you might be thinking if you’ve never switched one out before). There are also smart plugs from brands like Lutron that’ll let you dim your lamps up and down.

The easiest way, however, is simply to upgrade your bulbs to smart bulbs. It’s a great time to do it — costs have come way down in recent years, and the advent of voice controls has given people a quick, easy way to jump to whatever setting they like, whenever they like.

Best of all, just about every smart bulb on the market will dim without flickering or buzzing, eliminating a common headache that comes with in-wall dimmer switches. That also makes smart bulbs especially good picks for bedrooms, where strong dimming performance and things like prescheduled wake-up fades can do wonders for your mood in the morning.


On the left, a bowl of M&Ms lit by a standard GE LED. On the right, the same bowl lit by a GE Reveal LED, which does a much better job at making colors look vivid and true.

Consider colors in your kitchen and your closet
I’m not talking about color-changing smart lights (though if you want to jazz your home up with them, don’t let me stop you). No, I’m talking about the colors that are already in your home — artwork, furniture, the clothes in your closet, the fruits and veggies in your kitchen, you name it.

Whatever it is, if it’s colorful, then it’ll benefit from light bulbs with high color rendering scores — bulbs that help colors look their best. This isn’t always the easiest thing to shop for, as manufacturers aren’t required to list their color rendering scores on the packaging, like they are with brightness and efficiency specs. Some bulbs that do claim to be great with colors are actually just so-so.

My tip: Just stick with GE Reveal bulbs, because after about five years of reviewing light bulbs for CNET, I’ve yet to test one that hasn’t delivered on its promise of better-looking colors. That includes standard 60-watt replacement LEDs, floodlights, weird-looking stick-shaped LEDs and more. They tend to cost slightly more per bulb, and most are a little less bright than the average LED because they filter out some of excess yellow light — but those compromises are worth it if you’re using them to light up the spots in your home where you’ll appreciate accurate, better-looking colors day in and day out.

And that’s really the point — despite regularly taking them for granted, we use light bulbs more than just about anything else in our homes. They’re often the first things we turn on in the morning and the last things we turn off before going to bed. So don’t let the lighting aisle overwhelm you — finding the right lights for each room in your house is well worth it, and much easier than you might think.

REF:CNET

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Li-Fi edges closer as Signify backs the technology

SIGNIFY HAS bought another Li-Fi company in a major vote of confidence in the emerging technology.

The company, the world’s biggest lighting manufacturer, has purchased San Diego-based start up Firefly LiFi in what it described as a ‘strategic acquisition’.

The deal – reported in the Edison Report – follows Signify’s takeover in February 2017 of French Li-Fi developer Luciom.

Signify, formerly Philips Lighting, has 30 trials of the technology around the world. At last year’s Light + Building exhibition, company CEO Eric Rondolat said his ambition was to take Li-Fi – ‘light fidelity’ in which LED lighting provides a broadband Internet connection through light waves – into the mainstream.

The plan is that Signify would license its technology to OEMs, ensuring that the Li-Fi capability could be bundled in luminaires from different brands.

In another development, Li-Fi developer pureLiFi has unveiled the first ‘Gigabit’ Li-Fi platform for smart phones. At Mobile World Congress, the Scottish firm showed new optical components that will allow phone users to access ultra-fast 5G services from LED luminaires.


A Li-Fi installation at a cancer centre in Italy, is one of a large number of trials taking place around the world.The test project, at the Oncological Reference Centre in the National Cancer Institute in Aviano, is designed to explore if receiving data from the LED lights cut the electromagnetic interference with life-saving equipment such such as MRI scanners. The project is a collaboration between the University of Udine, the VDA Group and pureLiFi.

It also emerged this month that the US Army is trialling Li-Fi as a way of delivering secure battlefield communications.

This technology is being investigated by the Research, Development and Engineering Command Soldier Center’s Expeditionary Maneuver Support Directorate.

The technology will be used in temporary battlefield HQs known as ‘expeditionary mission commands’.

A key advantage for the army is that Li-Fi eliminates the problems associated with the time-consuming task of running data lines in tactical operation centres and command posts. Also, since the technology does not use radio waves, it cannot be detected outside the confines of the mission command platform.

‘The technology uses light waves to transmit and receive data between the servers and the user’s computer,’ said Melvin Jee, the leader of EMSD’s Command Post Platforms Branch. ‘As light cannot pass through walls, the enemy cannot detect the signal.’

The army is working with US Li-Fi manufacturer VLNComm.
REF:LUX

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