What Do You Do With The Old Fixtures?

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by JimLewis, Nov 19, 2012.

  1. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,102

    Why not just save them up and use them in the systems that you donate to charity, commmunity, friends, family and co-workers? No point scrapping totally fine, functioning componentry when there is ample opportunity to put it to good use for others in need.

    Your comments on retrofit LED lamps are so very out of date, so 2008. You really should get up to speed on this stuff before you trash it out outright. I have been 100% LED lamps for both new installations and retrofits for over 4 Years now. Not by fluke either... I developed the line of LED lamps now branded as Illumicare and know a thing or 3 about this stuff.
  2. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. I've seen good evidence about how hot a LV light fixture can get inside with an LED lamp inside of it and how that drastically decreases the expected lifespan. Also, it's obvious when you look at the warranty given on different products as well. Many companies who sell fully integrated LED fixtures are able to offer a 10-year, 15-year or even in one case a lifetime warranty on their fixture and lamp. It makes sense that they are able to do this because they've designed the fixture around the lamp - to account for heat control, make sure the light fixture controls moisture and/or is waterproof, etc. They've been able to manufacture in controls that they know will keep the LED so protected that it will be able to get it's full lifespan.

    But then you compare that to LED lamp manufacturers who are only willing to warranty their lamp for 1-3 years (or 5 years in one case) . It's not only easy to understand why (via testing & engineering) but also because they know that their LED lamp may not be going into a fixture that is able handle the heat dissipation, keep moisture out sufficiently for 10+ years, etc. The warranty these companies offer really confirms this.

    If you're saying that dropping in an LED lamp into just some old landscape lighting fixture is just as good as installing an fixture that was totally engineered and designed around LEDs is the same thing - I'd have to say it is you who is a little out of touch. But maybe rather than fighting about that, it's just better to agree to disagree. :)
  3. Steve Atkinson

    Steve Atkinson LawnSite Member
    Messages: 94


    Your warranty point is interesting because up to now we all assume that these either integrated LED fixtures or LED drop-in lamps are going to be used in the typical average 6 hours per day operation in someone's landscape or outdoor environment.


    Let me introduce a very different viewpoint.

    I have been working on project leads involving several major Las Vegas casinos where the Brilliance products are under review for usage. Some of the applications are indeed outdoor, running from dusk to dawn. But many are indoor location applications. We all know that casinos are typically dark places and require light 24/7, often running dimmed all the time.

    In this type of use, do the math of always on and you will see that the LED lamps, 120v or low voltage, will burn through that magical 50,000hr life in less than 5 years. So when Brilliance puts a 5-year warranty on the product, they do so with the knowledge that they do not control the place of usage or run time. Once the product leaves the distributor's counter, the clock is ticking.

    In a landscape lighting application of 6 hrs per night, your clients get approx 22 years of service. Combine a high quality LED with a 5-year warranty and great electrical energy savings. And a cost savings of 30-35% using a Brilliance LED lamp with standard fixtures over the integrated LED fixtures.

    It's great if the client's budget allows taking out the old and putting in all new LED fixtures, but if that's not possible, the quality drop-ins are a solid choice for you and your client.

    Sorry this was long.
  4. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,102

    Well stated Steve. Spot on information as far as I'm concerned.
  5. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,876

    I agree with most everything Steve said as well. The only part I differ with is that a drop in LED would really really last 22 years in a fixture that wasn't really designed to dissipate heat very well and prevent water/moisture intrusion for 22 years. That's the only part I question.

    I fully agree with you on this point:

    I think there are two markets. One for brand new systems or total system replacements using integrated LED fixtures. And another market for people who don't want to replace their existing system. They're just getting tired of changing bulbs every 6 months and they don't want to spring for a whole new system. I serve both of those markets. We do a lot of new installs with integrated LED fixtures and we do a fair amount of retrofits with drop-in LED lamps as well. I don't see those two markets overlapping too much. So for the latter market, I really like products like those that Brilliance make. I'd probably like the illumicare stuff as well. But I've never seen that in any of the distributors in my area and haven't really needed to shop around too much anyway. Brilliance has met my needs for the most part there anyway.

  6. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,187

    Hi Jim,

    If the equipment is in good shape, I usually will repair and re-task the lighting using either Halogen or LED drop ins. I can't in good conscience, and I believe it is a dis-service to my client to sell them something they don't really need when the drop in's work perfectly well and are far more economical to my clients than tearing everything out. (In fact, as of late, I use more and more of them, they are performing far better than I could have imagined.) I think my clients appreciate that I am not just looking to take a buck from them, but I am genuinely looking to give them the best options. Now, as for replacing solid brass Unique type fixtures with poorly made, cheap aluminum junk; that is a true dis-service. This is the truth; of all the worn out and tired looking fixtures I remove from landscapes it is easily 50% malibu type and 50% kichler fixtures that have failed. IMO, (and this is just my opinion of course) they produce a way overpriced, poor quality, light fixture. I am sure I will offend some blue blood kichler guys here, but the boxes full of removed, worn out and broken, kichler fixtures in my storage unit don't lie. I break them down and recycle them at the end of the year. Their LED fixtures (not necessarily the components) are no different in my opinion either. Just my .02
  7. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,187

    If you are sold on the integrated fixtures, CAST has a pretty amazing line of integrated with a variable light output switch on them. They are also very well built of course. I know I will never sway you from Kichler though, and that's fine. Whatever works for your business model is what you need to do.
  8. Mike M

    Mike M LawnSite Bronze Member
    from usa
    Messages: 1,988

  9. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,187

    Thanks, now if only I could make it so people could find it.

    A special thanks to Jim Lewis for some SEO tips I am about to implement.
  10. irrig8r

    irrig8r LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,553

    I'm troubled when I see a photo of mine appear on someone else's website,
    even when it's a crappy cell phone photo of broken fixtures from the days before smartphones.

    You know which one I'm referring to, right?

    To refresh your memory, it's the right half of this one.
    I'm thinking I must have shared it on Lawnsite.


    It was taken at a customer's house in Saratoga, CA on ‎Saturday, ‎December ‎03, ‎2005, ‏‎5:35:19 PM. I still have the original in my files.

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