How Can You Make a Restaurant Energy Efficient?
How you can make energy efficient restaurant lighting. A restaurant is much more than simply a place for eating food. A good restaurant is an experience to remember, a great night out with impressions, feelings and inspiration. It is the atmosphere that brings in the right business and finds the target audience. Besides the suitable furniture, qualified staff and an inviting menu, great atmosphere demands excellent lighting as well.
Whether it needs to be intimately dim or invitingly bright, restaurant lighting is always a challenge for the designer. We all want to see what is on our plate without feeling like we are in the spotlight. The kitchen needs to have enough working light without blinding the cook, and the waiters must navigate through the space with comfort and ease.
Lighting Can be a Limiting Factor
A functional lighting design demands that a lot of different lighting elements continuously illuminate throughout the opening hours of the establishment, and the lights will be on whether the tables are full or empty. For many restaurants, the lighting will be on from early morning to the very late hours in the night, and in some cases as many as 20-24 hours.
Until recently, excellent, functional and energy efficient restaurant lighting was an expensive privilege that not everyone could afford. Maintaining numerous lighting fixtures with a short life span is costly and demands constant attention. Checking on the lights on a daily basis, changing the bulbs and keeping a stock of spare ones can become a full time job in a large venue. The cost and headaches of maintenance, along with increasing electrical utility costs, further diminish thin margins that restaurants are forced to operate on, even under the best of circumstances.
Luckily, with the use of energywise technologies and some smart design choices, energy efficient restaurant lighting does not need to be an affordably lighting option any longer.
Energy Efficient Restaurant Lighting – Its Time Has Come
You don’t need to look very far to find contractors touting LED lighting and its’ many attributes. Some have even made such bold statements calling LEDs the most significant breakthrough of the last 130 years in lighting technology.
The energy consumption of LED bulbs, LED tubes and LED fixtures is lower than we ever imagined possible, with savings as great as 80% in some cases. This money saving potential is driving many restaurants towards the installation of energy efficient lighting, either with their next new restaurant, a remodeling project, or simply as a retrofit of existing traditional light bulbs and fixtures that are both energy inefficient and maintenance intensive.
As most restaurant owners have experienced, a great deal of the high costs associated with traditional lighting includes the replacement of bulbs, ballasts and fixtures. In cases where those bulbs require maintenance crews and licensed electricians, costs can be through the roof.
Energy Efficiency In Restaurant
Technological advancements of the past ten years have also multiplied the life expectancy of LED light bulbs. So a single LED can produce quality lighting in a restaurant for as long as a decade.
The ability to save on a daily basis encourages many property owners to make the change to energy efficient lighting. As the investment in new LED lighting will pay for itself many times over.
With restaurant owners continuing to strive towards sustainability and energy efficiency, changing to energy efficient restaurant lighting is an appealing proposition to save money while accomplishing their sustainability goals. Supported by savings in energy consumption and exceptionally long life span, LED lighting is the best lighting option for return on investment, and is expected to be the lighting of choice for restaurants of today and tomorrow.
Scott Van Kerkhove is the CEO of EnergyWise and writes on issues surrounding sustainability, energy efficiency, and renewable energy.