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How to Choose the Right LED High Bay Lights?

Aug 24, 2020

LED lights have brought a significant change in the concept of lighting. Not only can they reduce energy consumption but also promise not to demand frequent maintenance without compromising on quality and other features. They have the ability to meet residential as well as commercial lighting needs. But, you should be particular about the needs in order to choose the appropriate types with the surety of getting the desired outcomes.

If you have to illuminate large indoor areas (particularly department store, gymnasium, warehouse, manufacturing facility, factory or warehouse), then high bay lights are what you should be buying. They are powerful lights and illuminate the entire space no matter how high the ceilings are. The fixtures are attached with pendants, hooks, chains or directly to the ceiling. Your task is just to figure out what type of lights to choose and how.

led high bay lights

Tips to Make a Decision

Just to simplify your task of choosing the right high bay lights, below are some tips to take into consideration:

The first and foremost thing is to

1. Create a Layout

The first thing you should do when buying LED high bay lights is to design a layout. This is because different spaces need different types of high bay lights. For instance, a storage room may only need a light with 30 foot candles. However, in a warehouse, you need 50 foot candles lux so that the environment can be conducive for work. Retail stores need very bright light so that consumers can clearly see the products they’re buying (80 foot candles or more). Before you do anything else, determine the lighting requirements of each room.

2. Determine the Lumens and Watts You Need

While you should look at the watts when buying LED high bay lights, lumens are more important.(low bay lights vs high bay lights?) Lumens measure the total amount of visible light produced by a light source. As LED technology continues to advance, new LEDs are manufactured that use less watts to produce more lumens.

Watts don’t tell you how bright a bulb is, lumens do. Watts only indicate the electricity a light source consumes. A good rule of thumb is 2 lumens for a cubic foot (for normal light) and 3 lumens for a cubic foot (for bright light).

When choosing LED lights for high bay fixtures, consider where they will be installed as different watts are recommended for different heights.

Fixtures that are 10-15 feet high need bulbs that produce 10,000 – 15,000 lumens

Fixtures that are 15-20 feet high need bulbs that produce 16,000 – 25,000 lumens

Fixtures that are 25-35 feet high need bulbs that produce 36,000 or more lumens

UFO High Bay

Linear High Bay

High Voltage

Replace 400W HID

Replace 1000W HID

3. The Number of Lights Needed

When you figure out the spacing the fixtures need between them in order to produce adequate light, you can determine how many LED lights you need. A lighting plan will determine how many lights you need, where they should be spaced (or in case of an existing facility, using the existing light locations).

The lighting plan will show you how bright the light will be (foot candles).

4. Decide on the Type of High Bay Lights

High bays come in a variety of designs. There are long, large lights known as linear high bays and round ones known as UFO’s. Linear high bays are perfect for large spaces for replacing fluorescent tube fixtures. UFO high bays are also perfect for high ceilings but are more robust than linear fixtures and most are IP (wet) rated. Wide angled linear high bays are perfect for lower ceiling applications.

LED UFO High Bays

UFO LED HighBays are round, compact, rugged high bay fixtures. They are designed too replace both low bay and high bay HID, MH and HPS high bays.

These are great to use if you’re looking for gyms and high bay warehouse lights. They are IP rated for wet locations, so if they happen to get wet, you’re covered. They are smaller than their linear fixture counterparts.

5. How important is efficacy, or lumens per watt, to you?

The higher a high bays efficacy, the less watts a high bay consumes to produce the same amount of lumens.

A 100W LED High Bay at 150 lumens/watt produces 15,000 lumens.

A 150W LED High Bay at 100 lumens/watt also produces 15,000 lumens.

For each hour both lights operate, the more efficient 100W light consumes 50 less watts. This is real energy savings.

More efficient lights typically cost a bit more at time of purchase. But they will save you a lot more money in reduced lighting bills over the life of the high bay

The trade off: Lower cost at time of purchase versus more savings over the life of the high bay.

6. Do you need a high voltage high bay fixture?

Typically voltage ranges for LED High Bays are:




LED High Bays automatically adjust to incoming voltage. There is no need to set the voltage. But it is important to make sure you have the right voltage selected for your commercial or industrial space.

7. What Color Temperature should you choose for your High Bay?

The two most common color temperatures are:

4000K – or Warm White

5000K – or Day White

3000K is a light that is well suited for homes. Most people find lighting above 5000K too harsh and bright to look at or work under. You should choose 4000K if you need a warmer, more inviting light. 5000K is great for completing tasks or replacement of metal halide.

8. What CRI should you consider when choosing High Bay LED Lights?

70+ CRI is a good option for a typical commercial or industrial high bay application. If you have manufacturing processes where color rendering is important, then choose a higher CRI, like 80 or 90. CRI is the equivalent of light quality. You typically need less quantity (lumens) when you have better quality (CRI).

9. You should remember this rule – Light Distribution is just as important as light levels

Making sure you have the right light levels is important, but making sure the light is even in your indoor space is as important. How can you tell how well a light will distribute light based on its specifications? You can’t. You need to do a lighting plan. That is why we offer free – no obligation – High Bay lighting plans.

10. What if you need to add light controls to your LED High Bay?

The most common light control for indoor LED High Bays are motion sensors. The two most common sensors are microwave and PIR (Passive Infared).

Make sure your LED High Bay is equipped with a 0-10V Dimmable driver. Motion sensors work with dimmable drivers to set a lower light level. Otherwise, all you have is on or off.

0-10V drivers – 0V does not always mean off. Make sure you ask us this question if you want the light to be off when no one is around. Otherwise, the lowest it will go is 10% on.

11. Do you need High Temperature LED High Bays for a hot environment?

Most high bay fixtures are rated to 122F Ambient Temperature. What if you need more than that? Fortunately we offer High Bays rated to 176F and 194F.

12. Do you need Rugged Impact Resistance High Bays?

In this case, you are looking for a fixtures impact rating, or IK rating. Fixtures are rated from IK01 to IK10. IK10 are the toughest. So if your commercial or industrial space is prone to knocking fixtures, or you have a gym where ball impact is common, consider a IK rated fixtures. Our UFO LED High bays are all IK08 rated.