As the cost of electricity in Australia is expected to increase significantly, your cost of doing business will increase. This guide will look at how you can save power with smart lighting and understand what smart lighting can do for your business.
A smart light can follow a schedule and be controlled remotely. A smart light contains software and can communicate with an App on a smart phone or a smart assistant like Google assisteant or Siri.
WHY should you care about lighting power usage?
Let us compare light bulb technology. The following lighting technologies each generate the same amount of light. Let us assume lights are on 60 hours a week. The energy rate used is $0.27/Kwh
|Technology||Power consumption||Annual cost to run||Life|
|Traditional Bulb||60watt||$50.54||1000 hrs|
|Halogen downlight||50 watt||$42.12||2000 hrs|
|Fluorescent Bulb||12 watt||$10.11||15,000 hrs|
|LED Bulb||9 watt||$7.58||25,000 hrs|
Thus, you could save up to $43 a year for every light bulb. If you had 25 traditional bulbs, you could save $1000 a year by going to LED.
A LED light also has a lifespan of around 25,000hrs, meaning you will buy and change a lot fewer light bulbs.
WHAT can I do with a smart light?
The last one out, turn the lights off. How many times have the lights been left on overnight? Perhaps you have a window display that you want to be left on for a certain time.
A benefit of smart lights is that they can be scheduled to turn off and on at certain times. Thus your office lights could be programmed to turn on Monday to Friday at 8am and off at 6pm. Lights can be grouped together so they all act the same, and separate groups can be made to enable certain lights to run at a different schedule. Such as a display window.
Smart lights will also allow you to change the brightness of the light, and some also allow the colour to be changed. The Nanoleaf smart bulb we tested allowed 16 million possible colours. Practical uses of this include being able to set moods within displays or even adjust the colour temperature throughout the day
HOW do you set up smart lighting?
If you purchase a smart light bulb and place it into a standard socket, it will perform just like a regular bulb with the main switch turning it off and on. However, if you download the suggested app onto your smartphone, the various smart light features mentioned above become an option. The light switch must be left on for the smart functions to work, and the globe will switch off as per its schedule.
Set up of the app is pretty simple after it is downloaded by establishing an account and then following the on-screen instructions. Once the bulb is visible on the app, it can be grouped with others, and the various settings can be applied.
Small Business Answers tested the Naoleaf essential range of light bulbs to help write this story. A 3-pack of smart lights can be bought for $79.99 from their website.
Not all smart bulbs work the same, and different brands will use a separate app to manage the bulbs. Check if there is an App for your smartphone’s operating system. Once you commit to a brand, it is best to stay with it so you have control over a single app. The connection with the lights might be with Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. A Bluetooth will consume less power running the globe on standby but can only be controlled if the smartphone with the app is in range.
Some smart lights will also work with smart assistants so you can ask Siri, Google Assistant or Alexa to turn the light on etc.
SUMMARY – Buying a smart light
Introducing smart lighting into your business will save you money compared to conventional lighting and ensure the lights are only on during office hours.
Businesses wanting more creativity with displays can use them to change colours and brightness to make your business stand out.
Depending on your existing light fittings, evolving to LED smart lighting will pay for itself in the first year.