The lighting systems in garages are very different from the led lighting solutions in parking garages, but both have the same purpose, to allow us to reach our vehicle safely. Designing a well-lit space, ensuring that there are no dark or unlit areas, will offer users comfort and safety, something very important in garages and car parks. The walls painted in light colors avoiding the gray of the cement and well visible signs for both pedestrians and vehicles will improve the usability of the space.
In order to obtain efficient lighting, aspects such as surface or location must be taken into account, whether they are located outdoors or indoors. To differentiate them, we will call those parking areas located inside or underground of buildings a garage. While, by means of parking we will refer to those parking areas that are outdoors. The location of the space is essential to choose the luminaires that will best adapt to the surrounding conditions. We will not use the same elements for lighting in parking lots as for lighting in garages .
LED lighting in garages
The garages, in most cases, remain lit practically 24 hours a day. We therefore need a low bay lighting element that has a high durability and offers a general and sufficiently powerful light. In this way users will have no problem getting around and finding their vehicle.
An LED lighting system in garages must provide a minimum of 50 lux, although it is always recommended that the light level is at least 75 or 100 lux. One of the most used elements is LED screens , the perfect substitute for fluorescent tubes. These must be installed in the most efficient manner. Efficient means an effective distribution of the luminaires, which distributes the light capacity as evenly as possible in the space. For this, it is necessary to take into account the dimensions of the space and the characteristics of the luminaires, especially the luminosity (lumens) and the light distribution or aperture angle with which the light emits.
We cannot forget the LED emergency lights , so important and necessary. There are recessed or surface emergency lights, although there are no major differences except for aesthetics and the installation process. The important thing is that they perform their function correctly, indicating the exit and the path to follow to reach it, in the event of a power outage. For more information we have the article on lighting in emergency plans where the regulations on emergency lighting are reviewed .
Although the lighting elements in garages with LED technology can remain on for long periods of time, it is not recommended that they are operating indefinitely. It is, therefore, advisable to program automatic shutdowns or opt for the installation of presence detectors , which prevent the lighting system from always being on.
In the case of high bay lighting in public garages, especially those located in shopping centers, it is advisable to install green and red lights at the top of each square. In this way, we facilitate the visibility of free (green) and occupied (red) places.
LED lighting in car parks
The car park lighting, as we said before, are located outside. In this type of space, exterior lighting elements are used , such as LED projectors, located at a high height to facilitate a more uniform distribution of light. LED lighting in car parks can be complemented with, for example, beacons installed at a lower height. Although the minimum lighting levels in car parks can be as low as 20 lx, we always have to bear in mind that there must be enough light to be able to find the vehicle and manipulate the keys.
The height and separation of the light sources depends on their power and the width of the light beam they emit. It is important that the luminaires have IP65 or higher protection that guarantees their resistance to the elements and inclement weather.
Since in this case the LED lighting elements in car parks only work at night or in low light hours, the usual thing is to install light sensors or timers, elements that allow us to turn the lights on and off automatically according to a certain ambient light level or preset time.
As you can see, LED technology offers us various lighting alternatives in parking lots and garages, achieving more functional spaces and reducing electricity consumption.