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professionalism in lighting business

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by starry night, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. starry night

    starry night LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,268

    Here is a small sampling of fixtures and wiring I removed this past season from existing systems installed by others. Most of this stuff is about 8 years old, some of it brand name and not what I would call quality.

    I haven't been around that long but first question regarding the fixtures: Do you think manufacturers / distributors have upgraded the quality of their fixtures in the last few years?

    Second question, this one regarding the quality of installations. In the picture is one set of connections, all one big splice using regular wire nuts wrapped with electrical tape. And one of the fixtures has a square pierce-point connector. Again, these are from installations about eight years ago. In your opinion, has the overall professionalism of lighting installations improved in the last few years?
  2. starry night

    starry night LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,268

    Sorry photo did not upload first time.

  3. Classic Lighting

    Classic Lighting LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 512

    I'll take a stab at #2. In my opinion, the accessibility of quailty materials is now widely available. Internet sales have sky rocketed. That has left the traditional brick-and-mortar distributor in a difficult position to sell product outside of their community.
    On the other hand, I do not believe that the quality of installations has improved. There are still too many landscape companies that sell a few lights as an add-on to a landscape install. These companies are simply not educated (or care to be educated) on proper design and installation practices.
    There will always be the bottom dwellers that get the most facetime with customers due to cheap prices.
  4. NightScenes

    NightScenes LawnSite Silver Member
    Male, from Kingsland, Texas
    Messages: 2,214

    I think there have been improvements in installations over the past 8 years. I know when I first joined this forum, there were only about 3 of us on here and now look at it. There were also only about 3 companies within 75 miles of me doing nothing but outdoor lighting and now their everywhere although some of them are just trunk slammers, some do very good work. We are definitely not to a level that we should be but it is getting better.
  5. LLC RI

    LLC RI LawnSite Member
    Messages: 149

    Given the look of some of the spikes and the quick connectors, I'd say that those fixtures look like home depot/lowes DIY variety. The top black one looks like a Footliter/Nightscaping, but it's clearly a knock off. The thin spike gives it away among other things.
  6. starry night

    starry night LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,268

    Actually, the top one is a Hadco.
  7. Mark B

    Mark B LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,020

    I agree with Paul. Back then you didn't lots to choose from. It seems harder for the professional to learn about new products then, compared to now.

    For me personally, I think the wire nuts with black tape on them, I think they good life out of them for what they had to work with. Plus I would think most were not installed by a professional, but instead on electrical companys.
  8. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,645

    The pierce points and electrical tape give away whether the person or company knew what they were doing. the placement of fixtures, and voltage of the fixtures loaded, total % load of system gives more clues, and finally the quality of the fixtures. I rarely tear out systems that have everything in place. most all have failed on several levels. sadly, I am seeing more tearouts on systems that probably cost a bit to put in, with good fixtures and trans, installed just few years back, but were not installed properly, overloaded and over bulbed, and not really maintained at all.

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