What Makes LED Lighting Sustainable?

Energy Focus Blog

What Makes LED Lighting Sustainable?

Converting to LED lighting can have a positive sustainable impact on our environment. By reducing electricity consumption we reduce our carbon footprint in the process. Energy Focus is here to give you some facts on how LED lighting can help the environment.

LEDs Last Longer

Traditional fluorescent tubes may only last you 34,000 hours, however, Energy Focus LED lights were found to surpass 70,000 hours of testing. We even back up our claims with a 10-year end-to-end warranty for most of our LED tubes and luminaires. Imagine not having to change a single lightbulb for 10 years!

Low Maintenance

Energy Focus LEDs are self-contained, meaning they don’t need a ballast to operate. A ballast is what gives fluorescent lighting its power to luminesce. Ballasts also wear down and require replacing just like tubes. LED lights integrate the drivers and LED chips into the tube itself. So when the light goes out, the only thing you need to replace is the light! With a 10-year lifespan and no ballast maintenance required, maintenance of your facility’s lighting is significantly reduced.

Low Energy Costs

Powering a commercial or industrial space on average can cost about $0.12 per kilowatt-hour (kWh), which can be costly if you’re running a facility for 8 hours a day or longer. As stated before, fluorescent lights require ballasts to be able to light up, so while a fluorescent tube says it requires 24 watts of energy to illuminate, it might actually be closer to 29 watts because of the ballast.

Why? Ballasts typically require 5 watts to power the fluorescent tube! The unfortunate ending to this is that fluorescent lights only produce about 50-100 lumens per watt (lm/w) for all the energy required to turn the light on.

UL Type-B, or Direct-Wire, LED tubes require much less energy to illuminate because they do not require a ballast to operate. This saves you and the environment an additional 5 watts per tube! Energy Focus LED tubes take it a step further and offer you the optimum amount of lumens per wattage (lm/w) possible in a tube. Our 500D Series LED tube is an 11-watt tube that produces 1540 lumens, this equates to about 150 lm/w for one tube.

An 11-watt LED tube that produces 150lm/w or a 29-watt fluorescent tube and ballast that produces 50-100 watts. The choice is simple: LED tubes are much more efficient on your energy costs as well as your carbon footprint on the environment.

There's nothing more sustainable than Energy Focus LED tube technology.

Mike Somers, VP of Business Development

Retrofitting Capabilities

Our Direct-Wire design is a very simple installation and continues to utilize the existing fixtures. The wiring is taken from the ballast and rerouted to non-shunted lampholders, where the LED lamp is locked in place. This way the LED lamp is connected directly to the main power. Flip the light switch and that’s it! This retrofit design keeps thousands of fixtures out of landfills, keeping with Energy Focus’ sustainable design plan.

Angled Beam Design

The common design for LED tubes on the market today is a 360-degree tube of plastic that illuminates. This is not ideal, because you are losing about 40% of the light that is being reflected off of the fixture. It also causes problems due to heat. If the LED tube gets too hot, the plastic can warp.

Energy Focus has eliminated both of these problems with an angled beam design created from an aluminum backbone. We focus the light to provide a 120-degree angle of light, giving you optimum control of what is illuminated. The aluminum backbone is also a heat sink, meaning it provides a heat dissipating function. The aluminum draws away any heat the electronics inside the tube create. This makes the tube cool to the touch and will keep it from warping.


Did you know that LED tubes are recyclable? There’s a little disassembly required, but all you have to do is remove the INPUT end of the LED tube and pull out the attached LED driver and LED chip strip. The aluminum and plastic of Energy Focus LED tubes can go to a commercial recycling plant to be broken down and turned into something else. The LED driver and chip components will need to be taken to an e-cycling center. An e-cycling center is the same place where you would take old computers or electrical devices to be broken down safely.  Alternatively, you can return your LED lamps to Energy Focus where we will properly recycle these parts for you.

Did you know that LEDs were this sustainable and environmentally friendly? Do you want to learn more about Energy Focus and our commitment to sustainability? You can visit our Sustainability webpage or email us at techsupport@energyfocus.com for more information.

Infographic - Sustainability