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In-House Crews, Contractors Split School District Lighting System Projects

By Dave Lubach, Associate Editor - August 2014 - Lighting


Installation work for the district's lighting upgrades was split between in-house crews and contractors, depending on the size and scope of the projects.

"Our electrical crews did handle some of the retrofits, those that were easy enough to change out," Cassilly says. "Some of the larger projects, if we were doing a full-scale retrofit, that would be contracted out only because of the size and the amount of work that needed to be done in a quick manner."

Installing light sensors in classrooms significantly reduced the number of maintenance calls for burned out bulbs, as classroom lights no longer stayed on all night if custodians or others using the facility in the evening forgot to turn them off.

During the installation process, Comes worked with her night maintenance crews to find the proper settings for the sensors.

"I had them let me know how long a light is on because the teachers would complain about the lights never going out," Comes says. "The staff was my eyes and ears."

The installation of LEDs in outdoor areas also produced important benefits. Exterior LED wall packs produced enough light that managers were able to reduce the number of installations, both curtailing energy use and minimizing light pollution that had been affecting schools and their neighbors. The new fixtures and their slimmer size addressed another problem — losing fixtures that people had been shooting out with pellet guns.

"By changing over to new light-pollution technology, we have schools that are going on three years now that haven't lost a single light," Cassilly says. "We were losing at least five or six a year.."

With more time available due to fewer fixture replacements, maintenance technicians turned their attention to other pressing needs in their facilities, such as HVAC and grounds duties.

"We have more time to spend on the projects we normally do each day," Lochary says. "We never end up with notes or e-mails about a light being out in rooms. We used to get one or two a day at this school."





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