Exterior lighting is a vital aspect of city planning as well as any commercial property. We use street lights or lamp posts to illuminate areas and make them safer for vehicles and pedestrians to get around at night. We call these tall light fixtures post lights, and they come in many different styles and varieties.
Many business owners are making the push towards greener, more sustainable energy and want to focus on solar-powered exterior lights. Knowing how to replace electric post lights with solar post lights can make the process go a lot more smoothly and help you determine what steps you need to take.
Advantages of Solar Post Lights
It’s a good idea to understand the distinct advantages of solar lighting before you start making any replacements. Solar and electrical lights have a lot in common, like having access to LED lighting options and light-sensitive sensors that know when to turn on or shut off. However, similarities aside, there are multiple distinct advantages to switching to solar lighting that businesses or governing facilities can take advantage of and enjoy.
For starters, solar lighting is good for the environment. Solar lights don’t connect directly to the power grid, so they use less energy and don’t need to overload a power plant. Because you're not drawing energy from the grid, solar lights continue to work in the event of a power outage. Proper illumination after a natural disaster causes a prolonged power outage can help keep people safe in dark situations and guide them toward a potential shelter.
Because solar lights don’t need to rely on the power grid, many companies save money in the long run. Solar lamps generally require less maintenance and don’t use as much power over their long lifespans. The initial investment is a little higher, but the money you save helps balance it out sooner rather than later.
Replacing the Lamp Head
There are a couple of different options when you want to replace electric post lights with solar post lights. One possible option is to remove the current fixture head and replace it with a new one. This method enables you to keep already installed posts but may narrow down your lighting options to ones that would fit on the established poles. You should still have plenty of options, but you want to take proper measurements and check the diameter of your pole and old electric light fixture after removing it.
One of the distinct advantages of focusing on replacing the lamp section of your post top lights instead of the entire fixture is that you can save money on parts and labor. However, you will need to take some extra labor steps to ensure that your new fixtures look professional. Taking the time to paint the poles or new lamps so they’re all the same color helps them look nicer and sends a positive message to the community.
Replacing the Full Fixture
Another option is removing the old fixtures entirely and replacing both the lamp and the pole. This method allows companies and businesses a lot more options when looking at different heights, lamp styles, and available sizes since you're starting with a clean slate. Companies may choose to buy an all-in-one package that includes the pole and lamp or mix and match new poles and lamps separately. If you opt for the latter, remember to ensure the lamps fit onto your pole without hassle. You may also need to repaint the pole or lamp once again so that your entire fixture is the same color for a more professional aesthetic.
The notable downside of replacing the entire lighting fixture is that it generally costs more money and requires more overall labor. So, it may be a more expensive and time-consuming process than just replacing the lamps on top of the pole.
Regardless of which method you use, one of the most essential steps is safely removing the wiring and disconnecting your units from the main power lines. Unless you have in-depth electrical experience, we recommend hiring a licensed technician to handle the disconnection process. Improper handling of the wires may result in shocks, burns, or even electrocution. Working with a specialist helps reduce any mechanical or safety risks and ensures that your new solar lights are working correctly.
There are several essential tools that you need when you want to replace your electric post top lights with solar ones. Even if you have a licensed electrician handling the wiring and installation of the new light fixture, you may want to have some stuff on hand for swapping out or installing your new lights.
It’s always a good idea to have screwdrivers or wrenches to remove the lamp, posts, screws, nuts, and bolts from your fixtures. If you’re working with an older electric light, we suggest having some spray lubricant and a hammer to deal with particularly stubborn fasteners.
If you’re only replacing the light fixture or utilizing a new pole and lamp independently of one another, you may want to consider having some sandpaper nearby to help remove paint and prepare your fixture for its new matching color.
Solar lights operate by storing their power in a battery rather than connecting to the main power grid, so an essential step in the replacement process is setting up and attaching the wiring to the battery pack. We recommend leaving this task to a certified professional to ensure that your battery is working and storing the saved solar energy from your new post top lights.
Installing post top LED solar lights is a smart move for any commercial or industrial property. Solar lighting is long-lasting, energy-efficient, and cost-effective. To ensure that you're getting the best lighting options with quality service, consider finding what you need at Induction Lighting Fixtures. We have a wide range solar powered post top lights and helpful guides on illumination installation, maintenance, and other general knowledge. If you have any additional questions, comments, or concerns, don’t hesitate to contact us anytime, and we'd be happy to assist you.