LEDs replace fluorescents for added warmth in San Jose condominiums

March 25, 2014
TerraLUX linear LED light engines were retrofitted into wall sconces in the Paseo Villas condominium complex adding warm lighting to hallways that had been lit with PL 13 fluorescent lamps.

TerraLUX has announced an LED-based lighting project in San Jose, California in which fluorescent lamps in wall sconces were replaced with linear light engines. The solid-state lighting (SSL) project resulted in better light distribution and warmer color temperature while also eliminating discoloration on the walls due to the heat generated by the previously used PL 13 fluorescent lamps.

The Paseo Villas complex was built in 2000 in downtown San Jose and houses six floors of residential condominiums along with some commercial spaces. The hallways were lit with 200 wall sconces that housed the PL 13 fluorescent lamps.

There were a number of issues with the fluorescent lighting, starting with black streaks on the walls that were created by the heat from the lamps. The sconces also lacked uniformity in terms of color and brightness. As lamps were replaced over the years, new lamps were substantially different in color from older ones. Moreover, the hallways were dim because the complex installed one lamp in each sconce instead of two in an attempt to save energy.

From a decorative perspective, the existing sconce fixtures were perfectly acceptable and indeed a good match to the aesthetics of the building. So the complex conducted months-long research into options for retrofitting the existing fixtures.

TerraLUX LEDs replace fluorescents for added warmth in San Jose condominiums

TerraLUX proposed that Paseo Villas retrofit the sconces with its LED-based Line Voltage Linear Engine product family. A nearby photo shows the modular products mounted inside a sconce. The complex was able to fit two of the LED light engines into each sconce while keeping power levels equivalent to when the fixtures were operate with a single PL 13 lamp.

The light engines are available in a choice of 4-, 6-, and 8-in. lengths. The complex installed the 4-in. models. The project utilized the 2700K CCT version of the product for warm light. That light engine delivers 400 lm whereas as the coolest option ups the output to 460 lm at 4000K and 5000K. Each module consumes 8W and offers efficacy in the 50-lm/W range.

In the Paseo Villas project, the SSL modules deliver far more light output than the fluorescent lamps. The lighting is now very pleasing, and with a fresh coat of paint on the walls, delivers on functionality and aesthetics. The modules are color matched for consistency. Moreover, the complex is projecting 33% energy savings.

The longevity of the light engines will also deliver considerable maintenance savings. TerraLUX projects that the engines will operate for more than five years with no maintenance. The cooler LED engines have also eliminated a potential fire hazard.