Sign & Digital Graphics

June '17

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78 • June 2017 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S ELECTRIC SIGNAGE "That is the best time to consider an LED retrofit," says Vincent. "In this situation, the customer will be already incurring the cost of the trip to the site, so it makes sense to perform the retrofit at the same time." Secondly, Vincent urges the sign maker to consider the overall return on investment ( ROI) for the customer. "The ROI will determine what time- frame the customer will recoup his or her investment," he explains. "The acceptable amount of time varies from customer to customer, but ROIs less than 36 months are considered good investments, are typically within the warranty terms of the manufacturer, and are especially favor- able when the warranty is backed by both a product and labor warranty." There are several factors that go into estimating the ROI, including the mate- rial and installation costs, energy savings, and markups. An online calculator can be found on Principal LED's website to help estimate these costs for different projects. When the decision is made to pro- ceed with a retrofit, the sign maker must then take into consideration the sign, as a whole, and how to proceed with the project. For example, "When retrofitting cabinets, things to consider are the cabi- net size (length, width, depth) and any structures such as poles," tells Joe Reis, director of LED signage at International Light Technologies, Inc. "The cabinet's dimensions will be the driving factor in what LED system is selected in terms of brightness of the modules, spacing of the modules, and the type of mounting system." Retrofit Considerations Sign makers should anticipate the amount of time it will take to install the new sign. Additionally, they should ask themselves questions about how to make the sign most effective and efficient for the customer. In turn, the customer will likely have questions as well. At right are some considerations and results that will come from a retrofit project. When called to retrofit a job site with LED lighting, it makes sense to update the graphics at the same time. Here the signage in the oyster bar at Legal Sea Foods at Logan airport was fitted with updated LED channel letters. (Image courtesy of International Light Technologies) LEDs can provide a lifespan of nearly 50,000 hours, or about 10 years. (Image courtesy of Principal LED)

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