LED low-voltage landscape lighting is a prime example of a technological quantum leap in the arena of scientific discovery that has transformed the landscape lighting industry. It was not until 2010 that the first 60-watt (equivalent) LED bulb was invented and brought into production. The technical developments and applications for LEDs have been fast and furious, and the advancements are remarkable.
1. A light-emitting diode (LED) replaced the filament, a coiled wire inside the glass bulb. The filament is constructed of tungsten which has a high melting temperature. The tungsten filament enclosed in the quartz capsule of a halogen burns bright and hot.
2. Low voltage energy consumption replaced the high energy consumption of the traditional halogen light bulb. LEDs use about 80% less energy than incandescent bulbs. A modest-sized landscape lighting system contains about 20 fixtures. If each fixture has an 8-watt bulb that burns about five hours per day, the energy consumption is approximately 24-kilowatt hours. The energy cost in metro Atlanta is approximately $0.15 per kilowatt hour. Keeping the dream home a sight to see after dark costs less than $5.00 per month with LED lighting.
3. Low heat replaced the high temperatures generated by traditional lighting technology, such as halogen lighting. A 300-watt halogen bulb burns at a temperature of 970 degrees Fahrenheit, while a 500-watt bulb burns at 1200 degrees Fahrenheit. In contrast, a 300-watt (equivalent) LED burns at 115 degrees Fahrenheit.
4. A much longer bulb life replaced the shorter bulb life of the incandescent (1000 hours) and halogen (2500 hours) bulbs. An LED low-voltage landscape lighting bulb will last 25,000 to 40,000 hours, about three to four years, burning continuously seven days a week, year-round. Practically speaking, an LED landscape bulb will possibly last ten or more years under normal conditions and a typical burn time of five hours daily.
5. The durability of the LED bulb replaced the fragility of the halogen bulb. A contributing factor to the longevity of the LED bulb is its durability. A shock-resistant LED bulb ensconced in a sturdy, brass fixture with specially engineered heat-dissipating phalanges makes an LED landscape lighting fixture and bulb from Southern Landscape Lighting Systems of Acworth, GA, almost indestructible.
The LED’s operating efficiencies, extended bulb life, and durability explain the low maintenance needed to keep the system operating at peak performance. Low maintenance, however, does not mean no maintenance. Below is a list of LED landscape lighting maintenance items that need immediate attention if they have not already been addressed.
1. Clean out and spruce up
By the time January rolls around, all the leaves should be on the ground. If none of the leaves were removed as they fell, the leaf layer most likely covers landscape lighting fixtures with a low posture or that are set flush to the ground or walkway surface. Leaf removal allows the fixtures to fulfill their lighting task. A thick leaf cover increases the possibility that the hidden fixture will be damaged by equipment or foot traffic. Since LEDs operate at relatively low temperatures, the likelihood of fire is minimal. On the other hand, a thick leaf layer covering a halogen lamp burning at 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit is a fire hazard.
2. Check the electricals
Once the areas around lighting fixtures are cleaned out and spruced up, inspect electrical panels, junction boxes, wiring, and fixtures for damage. A damaged fixture impedes the function of the bulb and may decrease the bulb’s lifespan. Technicians at Southern Landscape Lighting Systems of Acworth are specially trained to identify and repair electrical issues or damaged fixtures. LED low-voltage landscape lighting is safe, generally speaking. However, electricity, under any application, is to be respected. Entrust repair of the electrical system to the professionals. Bury exposed wires. Look for teeth marks from little and big critters. The bite strength of Pit Bulls, German shepherds, and Labrador retrievers measures about 235 psi. Wiring, plastic lighting components, and metal fixtures are no match for these powerful jaws.
3. Clean the fixture lenses to enhance lighting performance
Nightscape lighting can be mysterious, magical, and mood-enhancing, but not if fixtures are covered up, non-functioning, or impeded by dirty lenses. Enjoy the LED low-voltage lighting system to its fullest by taking care of the items on the maintenance list.