Per minutes parked, cars are stolen from parking lots forty percent more often than in any other area. That statistic trumps street parking or even parking outside an owner’s home.
If you’re an owner or manager of a big box retailer (or any store or commercial building with a dedicated parking lot), you need to know about LED parking lot lighting.
That’s because this type of lighting is proven to improve the safety and security of your parking lot. And a safe parking lot means happy customers. The last thing you want your business to be known as is the location where cars are broken into or stolen from.
Read on to learn more about the safety and other benefits of LED commercial parking lot lights and what to look for when sourcing them for your lot.
What Are the Safety Benefits of LED Lighting?
Choosing to install quality LED lights in your parking lot is proven to improve safety. A well-lit car parking lot helps people navigate better in the dark, reducing accidents. Lighting also reduces criminal activity.
LEDs provide reliable, unbeatably bright light. Their output is over and above what’s supplied by traditional metal halide or high pressure sodium bulbs. You can rely on them to give this light consistently throughout the evening with little maintenance.
Bright lights help drivers avoid hazards like:
- Dark-colored cars parked in shadowy areas
- People walking through the car park
- Objects like shopping cars left in the driving lanes
Equally as important: Adequate lighting ensures parking lot owners or managers avoid liability cases.
While outdoor parking lots benefit from natural light during the day, they don’t require 24-hour lighting. The same can’t be said for indoor or basement lots. In this case, it’s best to work with an LED lighting installation partner to design a lighting system that aids navigation in dark spaces.
In essence, LED lights in parking lots make it challenging for criminals to hide. Bright, well-placed parking lot lighting is helpful for:
- Empowering potential victims to protect themselves
- Making likely offenders more aware of witnesses
- Complementing other deterrence strategies, like security or police patrols or cameras
- Improving output quality from CCTV and other surveillance equipment
One recent study of street lighting in New York City found that lights reduced criminal incidents at night by over 30% and dropped overall crime rates by 4%.
Deterring crime is beneficial for a business’s bottom line in unexpected ways. For example, customers tend to avoid parking lots where they don’t feel safe, meaning companies that don’t invest in lighting may get visited less.
You can’t offer a customer more value than a safe and secure shopping experience.
Choosing the Right LED Parking Lot Lights
What kind of LED lights you use in your parking lot depends on the lighting design. And factors influencing your design include budget, area placement, light types, and level and direction of illumination.
Some best practices regarding number and light type include:
- Allows for good vision (avoids creating glare or blindspots)
- Ensures surveillance equipment can work effectively
- Ensures security personnel can perform their duties effectively
- Reduces or eliminates dark pockets or patches of shadow
- Illumination doesn’t “spill over” into neighboring properties
- Downlight angles reduce light pollution
- Lighting height doesn’t exceed municipal maximums and minimums
While there are various types of parking lot lights to choose from, what really matters is the light uniformity. Getting the balance right between lighting on and above the pavement or driving surface can mean the difference between efficient, effective (and safe) lighting or lighting that causes dangerous glare.
Other Benefits of LED Commercial Parking Lot Lights
LEDs have a far longer lifespan than their traditional counterparts—such as HID lighting. This means the upfront investment to convert your lighting or install a new lighting design in your parking lot can save parking lot contractors, business owners, and property managers money in the long run.
Better Aesthetics and Function
Typically, LED lighting requires fewer fixtures to light an area than traditional systems, and those fixtures can be more evenly spread out. This gives you more room for parking and allows you to design as much for aesthetics as for practicality.
LEDs are also directional, meaning you can point them where needed rather than randomly flooding a space with light.
Most business owners want parking lots that are as low maintenance as possible.
Due to their innovative design, LED lights are brighter for longer and distribute their light more evenly than other light sources. You likely won’t have to change bulbs for several years.
Energy (and Cost) Efficient
Almost unbelievably, LEDs (or Light Emitting Diodes) can transform close to 100% of the energy they consume into light. They have no moving parts, gases, or filaments. This means they last thousands of hours longer than other bulb types.
LED bulbs offer extensive savings in replacement, maintenance, and those monthly energy bills.
LEDs are a sensible choice for companies looking to improve their carbon footprint. As we outlined above, the bulbs are unrivaled in their energy efficiency. But they have other green benefits, too.
They give off less heat and contribute less light pollution. The fixtures are smaller, more agile, and require fewer materials to construct.
LED Parking Lot Lighting Keeps Staff and Customers Safe
You can’t offer a customer more value more than a safe and secure shopping experience. If you own or manage a parking lot, LED parking lot lighting is as vital to security as security guards and surveillance cameras. However, LED lighting is also discreet, attractive, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly.
All you need to do is decide on the type of lighting you want and invest in quality installment to create the secure parking lot your business needs.
If you’re looking for LED lighting for parking lots, reach out to our team at AMF Electrical. We can help you with every aspect of lighting, from design to installation. We’re the electrical contractor savvy business owners think of when it comes to lighting and safety.