How to qualify a lighting contractor before hiring them

Light is something that we all take for granted. Especially the lights in our homes and offices are never really even thought about until they go off or break. The importance of proper lighting is becoming increasingly necessary as light itself can have several impacts on the human body as well as the mind. 

Maybe you find the lighting in your home far too dull or you may feel that you have too many lights that are making the house feel warmer than it should be. Regardless of your lighting issue, it is always recommended to consult with one or more lighting contractors as they are the best qualified to give you advice and propose a solution.

However, with so many lighting contractors out there how does one find the right one for their particular needs. Most of us don’t know anything about lights or lighting systems so should we just trust the contractor on what he or she tells us? Absolutely not! That’s why we have devised a series of questions that can help you identify who is the best lighting contractor and who is simply taking you along for a ride.

Here is a list of 5 Questions to Ask Your Lighting Contractor that will help you decide whether they are the right fit for you or more trouble than they are worth.

How Many Lumens Are Present in the Proposed Lighting Solution?

The brightness of any light is measured by the number of lumens it encompasses. The higher the lumen count the brighter is the light. Some people prefer brighter lights while others like their lighting to be a bit darker. If you were comfortable with the brightness of the lights you had on previously keeping the same lumen count on the new lighting solution is vital. You don’t want to have the new set of light too bright or too dull for your liking so always ask your lighting contractor about lumen count on your current lighting and the one the contractor is proposing.

What About Lighting Temperature?

Different colored lights have different temperatures associated with them. Warmer colors like orange are red help create a sense of comfort and relaxation and are often found in bedrooms and break rooms. Even though the colors are warm the light itself is quite cool. Color temperature measured in Kelvin shows that orange and red lighting has the lowest lighting temperature associated with them ranging from 2000k-4000k. 

Yellow lighting lies in the middle of the spectrum and offers both comfort and alertness. The lighting temperature ranges from 4000k-5000k. Cold colors like blue and white are much higher in temperature ranging from 5000k-7000k and are normally found in places of work where alertness, productivity, and activity is required. 

Asking your lighting contractor on lighting temperature not only allows you to tell whether they know what they are talking about but also result in insight on what type of lighting would be best suited to their particular needs.

The Switch On Switch Off Mechanism?

In the world of modern LED lights, not all LED fixtures are made in the same way. Depending on the manufacturer, bulb type, application, and fixture the hardware that turns the light on and off can be quite different. Traditional on and off switches have become a thing of the past. New LED lighting systems come with dimmer, daylight sensors, and motion sensors that may not work properly with your current lighting system or home wiring. 

Your contractor should answer this question by first thoroughly examining your larger lighting infrastructure and based on those results offer a solution that is both manageable and efficient. 

The Installation Process?

Installing a brand new lighting system whether it be at your home or place of business shouldn’t affect your daily routine too much if the contractors you have hired are truly up to the task. Working around your schedule will help ensure minimal or negligible interference so finding a contractor with flexible schedules and an experienced team is crucial. By asking about the installation process you are in turn asking about how long the process will take and whether it will coincide with daily operations. 

The best contractors will already have an idea of the best times where the installation can be done to limit any delays or interruptions it may cause. Not only that the best contractors will often quote a timeline that is much shorter than others as they likely have much more experience and healthy manpower. 

Warranty/Terms & Conditions?

Always ask about the warranty period and any underlying terms and conditions before committing to anything. What is included in the warranty? Who to call if something goes wrong? Is the manufacturer or service center easy to contact and available in your area? 

Questions pertaining to warranty and the terms and conditions associated with them shows the lighting contractor that you know what you are talking about and they may even offer you an exclusive deal or discount to seal the deal.

Lighting contractors should offer at least a 5-10 year warranty on the lighting hardware and some can also offer service plans or discounted labor rates after the initial warranty expires. It pays to shop around as better contractors have better relationships with manufacturers that in turn helps you bear less liability if a fixture fails before or after the warranty expires.

Qualify Before Hiring

The answers to these questions will tell a lot about the experience and knowledge of your lighting contractor and whether they are indeed qualified to take on your lighting project. Professional, honest and credible lighting contractors are more likely to do a great job without causing any fuss in a budget that is reasonable and fair.

The ideal lighting contractor can truly help transform the energy levels in your home or office and work around a budget that you are comfortable with. The more contractors you meet the greater are the chances of you finding the ideal one for your lighting needs.

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