Will Solar Wallpaper be The Key to Lighting Sustainability?

Solar panels and electric lights have been getting quite cozy over the past few years. Whether it’s highway lamps charged up during the daylight hours, or businesses who dedicate their solar arrays to keeping the interior lights on, a huge amount of renewable power is being spent to make sure we never have to deal with the dark. Of course, for businesses who are looking for new and innovative ways to keep the lights on, the answer may have come from a former Chinese furniture store.

Does Solar Wallpaper Offer Sustainability For Lighting?

Len Gao and Phillip Gao are a father and son who, for years, used their furniture business as a way to finance their solar power ambitions. The result,according to Sustainable Brands, is that their new business Sunflare has produced a product unlike anything else; solar wallpaper.

It may sound ridiculous, but it’s actually not. These solar panels lack the stiff, glass substrates found in traditional solar arrays, and they are significantly thinner. Which means that, if someone wished to, they could put these panels up as wallpaper. Perhaps in the sun room.

An Open Design That Welcomes, and Saves Energy Costs

With the ability to put solar panels up inside, businesses may start re-thinking their designs. After all, if you can put up a bunch of windows to let in natural light, then you’re saving costs, and generating electricity at the same time. And, if a business combines these subtle solar panels with efficient lighting systems, like light-emitting diodes, then it’s possible they may never need to pay to keep the lights on again.

Simple Summer Energy-Efficiency Tips

The heat is on and it is tough to keep your home cool while lowering your energy bill. These simple summer energy-efficiency tips will cool your home without the huge cooling bill.

Dial Down the Thermostat: Do not cool an empty home. Buy a programmable thermostat for your home and set the air conditioner to cool your home before arriving home. When you are only home 12 to 14 hours of the day there is no need to cool your home 24 hours

Cover the windows: When the sun comes through your windows it heats your home and fades your furnishings. Install curtains, shades or blinds to block the heat in the summer while protecting your flooring, paintings, and other furnishings.

Cool showers and laundry: Reduce your water heater temp or reduce the water temperatures of showers and laundry loads. Your clothing last longer with cooler water temperatures. A cooler, shorter shower make you more comfortable in the warmer temps.

Seal the heat out: Hot air leaks through the cracks and crevices around windows and doors. Add insulation around window and door frames where gaps allow heat entry. Remove the frame and push strips of insulation around the door and replace.

Close the gap around pipes: Your heating and cooling pipes with gaps require added insulation to keep cool air from escaping. Inspect all your furnace and air conditioner pipes and connectors. When a connector is loose, tighten and insulate around it.

Use fans to increase the cool: Ceiling and stand-up fans are less expensive to run. Set ceiling fans are to circulate air in an efficient way. Placing floor fans around your home increases airflow, increasing the cooling effect.

Grill or microwave your food: Using your grill keeps the heat outside. Microwave your food and reduce heat from cooking, that normally would warm your home.

Keep hydrated: Drink water, tea and other cool drinks to keep your core body temperature down. You will feel cooler when hydrated.

Power down: Use power strips to turn off appliances and electronics when not in use. Phantom energy increases your bill.

Spend more time outdoors: You have a patio, deck or porch to enjoy. Keep your thermostat down while you are outdoors, Use your air condition only when you are actually indoors.

Try these ten simple summer energy-efficiency tips and reduce the energy use and lower your energy bills.

LED Lighting And Daylight Savings Time

Daylight Savings Time is in full effect. Some people enjoy this time of the year because the extra hour of sleep. However, others are never thrilled about seeing nightfall come quickly. This change will have an impact on your ability to have the outdoor lighting you need.

Your lighting, or lack thereof, can help or hurt your business. Many people do not like shopping at stores or walking through parking lots when it is dark. The right mixture of lights can highlight your business, hospital, parking lot, etc. You do not have to flood your parking lot or the outside walkway with lights that are too bright and a little annoying.

You can use lights that you can place along your walkway. This will give your customers and employees enough light, and it will also help them see where they are going during the dark evenings and nights. There are several LED lighting options for you to choose from, including solar lights. When you use solar lighting, you do not have to worry about plugging and unplugging lights or buying replacement batteries.

It does not matter what type of lights you will choose to put outside, you will want to make sure the lights fit the style of your business. You will also want to make sure the lights are subtle. No one will be hesitant from navigating from your walkway or parking lot during the dark.

An Introduction to the World of Designer Lighting

There’s a great variety of designer lighting available today. They range from contemporary to more traditional and from those that attach to your wall to those that hang from your ceiling. You’ll even find ones made of recycled materials. Some of the most popular types of designer lighting include:

  • Pendant lighting has a long, thin stem hanging from your ceiling with the lighting unit attached to it. They work well in dining rooms and foyers.
  • Recessed lighting gives off more light than pendant fixtures, but they’re not as decorative.
  • Rectangular sconce lighting produces diffused brightness, creating images on your wall that changes the atmosphere completely.
  • Chandeliers ranging from Baccarat inspired to Murano are typically safely and securely shipped to your home because they’re very difficult to take home yourself.

What makes these designer lighting options so great is the new technology that manufacturers are using to change the room’s ambiance and appearance. This technology makes designer lighting really user-friendly because you no longer have to get up to turn the lights off since it’s all connected to a single control similar to your TV remote. With this system, you’re also able to program when your lights turn on and off. Just imagine how big of an improvement this lighting is in your home, especially if you’re working to update the overall look and feel of your home. Take some time to consider what you really want to achieve.

LED Sustainability Outshines Any Other Form of Lighting

You’ve heard plenty about the sustainability of LED lighting, but just how eco-friendly are they really?

The answer: extremely!

Here are just some of the ways LED lights outshine the competition!


LEDs Provide More Light, Less Power
LED lights use between 50-90% less energy when compared to more common fluorescent or incandescent bulbs. LEDs also produce 10 times more lumens per watt than incandescent lighting. This is in addition to the fact that LEDs take no time to warm up like traditional bulbs do, and can be dimmed to a lower setting, or turned up to provide brighter lighting in a snap.

LED Lights have a Longer Lifespan
LED lights have an average lifespan of 50,000 hours – that’s over 5 times longer than the average fluorescent, and nearly 50 times longer than the average incandescent. That translates to over 10 years of daily commercial or industrial use. LEDs are especially useful in industrial settings as well, given their increased durability. Unlike vacuum tube bulbs, LEDs are much harder to break, and don’t carry any risk of causing fire in case of damage.

LED Lighting Utilizes Greener Construction
Given the long life and durability of LED lights, much fewer need to be manufactured. Another great advantage to LED lights is that they are 100% recyclable, and toxic chemicals are not used in their construction.

Whether you manage an office building, warehouse, manufacturing plant, or are in charge of community or municipal street lights, the benefits of LED lighting is clear. Not only does their improved energy efficiency make for considerable savings on electric bills, they also result in greatly curbed emissions.

Contact us today for more information on our products and services.



Improve your Business’ Sustainability with LED Lighting

LED_bulbsThe cost of being energy inefficient is rapidly rising – both for the environment, and for your bottom line. Helping your business run more sustainably is much easier than you may think  and making many little changes now can make huge differences in the long run. Switching to LED lighting, for example, is a great way to promote sustainability while keeping your overhead costs low. As 20% of the world’s energy is being used for lighting, every energy-efficient LED bulb you install works towards protecting the environment.

If you’re thinking about sustainable solutions for your business, consider these benefits to using LED lighting:

LED lighting is energy efficient: Compared to conventional bulbs, LED lights use 70-85% less energy. That’s no negligable difference. Up to 85% less dirty energy is being used to power your lights, and if your local utility produces sustainable energy, 85% more of it can be used elsewhere.

LED lighting has a long lifespan: LED lights burn for up to 50 thousand hours. Since they don’t need to be replaced as often as traditional incandescant bulbs, not only does this save you the money you would have used to replace them, but it also saves the energy required to manufacture more bulbs, and saves the landfill space that would have been taken up by burnt out bulbs.

LED lighting is 100% recyclable: Unlike incandescant bulbs, which use mercury and other harmful chemicals in their manufacture, LED lights are 100% recyclable. By recouping much of the energy that would need to go towards manufacturing new lights, as well as keeping the lights out of the landfill, LED lighting greatly improves the sustainability of lighting.

Relumination specializes in helping companies of all sizes reduce their carbon footprint and their utility bills. We work with our clients every step of the way, from planning your new LED lighting installation or retrofit, through to filing the necessary paperwork for qualifying rebates. Contact us today for a free estimate on an LED lighting installation.

How LED Lighting Can Improve Your Triple Bottom Line

TripleBottomLineAs you are no doubt aware, EISA, the 2007 Energy Independence And Security Act means that traditional incandescent light bulbs will no longer meet energy efficiency standards, with even 40 watt bulbs being phased out in January 2014. Despite somewhat vocal grumbling from certain quarters, this actually represents a great opportunity for businesses to improve their triple bottom line of profit, people and planet through the use of LED Lighting.

First – profit. LED lighting can reduce energy consumption by up to 90%, which considering energy costs can have a significant impact on your bills and improve cash flow. Benjamin Franklin famously once said that “A penny saved is a penny earned”, but even such an innovator as he would no doubt be impressed by a technology that improved on his dictum 90 fold. Not only are LED lights incredibly efficient, but with an average lifespan of 50,000 hours or more, an LED bulb will outlive 50 of its’ incandescent cousins, which equates to a significant cost saving over the lifetime of the bulb, not to mention the labor costs involved in “Relamping” the same fixture 50 times.

Second – people. When used in an office environment, LED lights provide even, consistent illumination without the flicker associated with traditional fluorescent tubes that can result in eyestrain or headaches for employees, which means an increase in productivity, employee health, happiness and general well being. LED light is also free from both Ultraviolet and Infra-red emissions, both of which are harmful not only to people, but can also damage equipment over time and cause fading of fabrics and surface finishes. Their instant start up means that flicking a switch provides complete lighting of any area without any slow start up or flickering, an important security consideration in sensitive or areas that are illuminated infrequently.

Third – planet. LED lights are environmentally friendly as their much lower energy needs means less power generation simply for light and therefore a reduction in fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas emissions. They contain no harmful materials such as the mercury found in compact fluorescent bulbs, many of which still end up in landfill sites. They contain no glass, which means that they can be used in areas prone to constant vibration or temperature fluctuation, or in areas used for food preparation, handling and storage. They are also free of any gasses or filaments, another contamination source associated with incandescent and fluorescent bulbs.

These may seem rather ambitious claims for so small and apparently humble an item as a light bulb, but as is often the case, the devil is in the details. Who would ever have thought that in all the business decisions one can make that something as simple as changing a light bulb could have such significance?

For more information on how LED lighting can improve your business, contact us

Relumination invited to write guest blog for Valley Forward

Earlier this week our CEO, Daniel Henderson, was asked to pen a guest blog for Valley Forward. Valley Forward “brings business and civic leaders together to convene thoughtful public dialogue on regional issues and to promote cooperative efforts to improve the environment and livability of Valley communities.”

We chose to focus on the sustainability differences between traditional, cfl and LED lighting.

We are excited to be asked to be part of the VF Blog. Please take a moment and check out our article here: http://valleyforward.org/blog/?p=1293