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Emergency Lighting Blog

News and Information for Public Egress, Building Safety and Government Compliance

Monthly Archives: April 2016

Requirements for Your Emergency Lighting

Buying and installing emergency lights isn’t always a simple task. You need to have the right materials installed correctly, and for this you should consider a few of the following buying guidelines and installation requirements.

Before Buying

Before you buy your emergency lighting, you should think about the longevity and efficiency of your unit. For this reason, consider photoluminescent, radioluminescent and LED light. For exit signs, self-illuminating units may cost more upfront, but they are efficient, last a long time and require little maintenance. LED signs cost less upfront, but need more maintenance and use more energy. Still, LED Exit signs are energy efficient.

For emergency lighting, you want to use LEDs to save time and money. Although the initial cost is greater than other forms of light, it saves money over the long term. LED lights use little power, on average 329 KWh/year. The power saving benefits aren’t the only aspects that will make you feel good about purchasing LED emergency lights. The bulbs also last a long time. On average, they can stay light for about 50,000 hours before burning out.

LED emergency lights are not only easy on your wallet, but they are kind to the environment. On average, they produce only 451 pounds of CO2 a year, which is far less than other types of lighting. They can also be easily disposed of.

Apart from the environmental aspect, you’ll enjoy the durability of LED emergency lights. They aren’t very sensitive to cold temperatures or humidity, allowing the lights to last longer, saving you money in the long term.

After Buying

Emergency lighting, especially exit signs, must be visible in every occasion according to OSHA’s guidelines. To meet visibility requirements, they must first have a backup source of power that can keep the light illuminated for 1.5 hours after power failure.

Don’t worry about this requirement too much. Most emergency lights are equipped with a backup battery. If no backup battery is present, it will be necessary for the unit to have access to an alternative source of power to meet OSHA’s guidelines.

The second thing your emergency lighting must do to meet OSHA’s standards is meet their illumination standards. The standards require emergency lights to provide an initial illumination of an one foot candle average. The foot candle denotes light intensity and is measured along the path of egress at floor level.

The next requirements involve exit signs. The letters on the signs should be at least six inches high, and if the direction of an exit is unclear, you must have an additional sign indicating the location of the nearest exit.

Although we can’t do much more to help you install your emergency lights to meet code, we can help you make the right purchase. Contact us at 800-521-4045 and we’ll guide you through our inventory to find the right lighting for your situation.