LED Under-Cabinet Lighting
Under-Cabinet Lighting: LED vs. Incandescent
LED lighting for mounting under cabinets, typically in office cubicles and kitchen applications.
Item ID: 150
Technical Advisory Group: 2009 Lighting TAG (#1)
Technical Advisory Group: 2014 Residential Building TAG (#10)
Average TAG Rating: 2.63 out of 5
TAG Ranking Date: 04/10/2014
TAG Rating Commentary:
I don't have a problem with the technology, I'm concerned that residentially this would be a large freerider issue. Under-counter lighting isn't that widespread and customers may be interested because it is "cool".
Not cost effective, market will provide without our interference
I'm not sure that under cabinet LEDs need program support.
It sounds promising, but like other work is already underway...
This technology has finally matured sufficiently. Influencing designers to shift to more use of task-lighting would be a meaningful part of this effort.
Under-cabinet lighting has typically been provided by fluorescent luminaires that use an omnidirectional light source to deliver directed illumination. Sometimes, xenon and halogen incandescent sources have been used. Unlike traditional fluorescent lighting, LED under-cabinet lighting can take advantage of the inherent directionality of LEDs to direct all of the available light onto the counter or desk below where it is needed, eliminating wasted light and energy.
LED under-cabinet lighting is widely available from a number of manufacturers but not widely adopted due to the higher first cost. The U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) is encouraging research, development and market penetration of the technology and is providing resources for objective, ongoing information about the technology. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Energy Star program includes a category for LED under-cabinet lighting.
Energy savings over traditional under-cabinet lighting using fluorescent and incandescent sources may be significant, depending on design light levels, fixture efficiency, and weekly hours of operation. The most efficient luminaires listed with the DOE LED Lighting Facts program have efficacies over 80 lumens/watt, which is comparable to fluorescent lighting and a substantial energy savings over halogen or incandescent lighting. Lamp life could be significantly longer than other systems in use, potentially providing maintenance savings. The white light is available in a range of color temperatures and high CRI (color rendering index) suitable for commercial and residential lighting uses. Additionally, the USDOE predicts continued improvement in efficacy and decline in price for LED lighting.
Baseline Description: 15 W Fluorescent Under-Cabinet luminaire, commercial office application
Baseline Energy Use: 58 kWh per year per unit
Baseline energy use for office application calculated assuming 15W T5 lamp (18 W total) and 3200 hr/yr of operation, (CEC, 2015).
building type Commercial.
18 W * 3200 hr/yr / 1000 W/kWh = 58 kWh/yr
Baseline energy use for residential application calculated assuming 15W T5 lamp (18 W total) and 2.4 hr/day, 7 days/week (876 hours per year) (DOE, 2012 Pg Table 4.5, pg 4.7).
18 W * 876 hr/yr / 1000 W/kWh = 16 kWh/yr
As shown below under Technical Potential, the number of commercial applications is about 26% of all applications, the remainder (74%) being residential.
Commercial: 58 kWh/year * .26 = 15 kWh/year
Residential: 16 kWh/year * .74 = 12 kWh/year
Prorated baseline energy use: 15 kWh/year + 12 kWh/year = 27 kWh/year
Manufacturer's Energy Savings Claims:
Currently no data available.
Best Estimate of Energy Savings:
"Typical" Savings: 50%
Low and High Energy Savings: 40% to 60%
Energy Savings Reliability: 3 - Limited Assessment
Typical savings estimate is based on a review of LED under-cabinet lighting products with a lumen output comparable to existing fluorescent lamps (approximately 650-700) listed in the DOE LED Lighting Facts database (DOE, 2014).
The energy savings can approach 40% to 60% when replacing fluorescent lamps
Energy Use of Emerging Technology:
29 kWh per unit per year
Energy Use of an Emerging Technology is based upon the following algorithm.
Baseline Energy Use - (Baseline Energy Use * Best Estimate of Energy Savings (either Typical savings OR the high range of savings.))
Potential number of units replaced by this technology:
Based on Navigant's 2010 Market Characterization for U.S. DOE SSL Program (Navigant, 2012), the U.S. office (commercial application) square footage is 14,300,000,000 and there are 33 lamps/1000 sf. Using the author’s estimate of 10% task lamps, the total number of U.S. office task lamps is 47,200,000. This report contains national data. Since the Northwest is about 4% of the population of the US, 4% of the national number is used in the calculations below.
Technical Potential = 4% * 47,200,000 = 1,888,000 units
For residential applications, there are an average of 1.2 non-ceiling lamps in a kitchen and 113,566,400 homes in the U.S. (DOE, 2012 Pg Table 4.5, pg 4.7) for a total of 136,300,000 kitchen under-counter lamps. This report contains national data. Since the Northwest is about 4% of the population of the US, 4% of the national number is used in the calculations below.
Technical Potential = 4% * 136,300,000 = 5,450,000 units
Note that the combined regional technical potential of commercial and residential applications would be almost twice as much (90% greater) as considering commercial applications alone.
Regional Technical Potential:
0.05 TWh per year
Regional Technical Potential of an Emerging Technology is calculated as follows:
Baseline Energy Use * Estimate of Energy Savings (either Typical savings OR the high range of savings) * Technical Potential (potential number of units replaced by the Emerging Technology)
Installed first cost per: unit
Emerging Technology Unit Cost (Equipment Only): $130.00
Emerging Technology Installation Cost (Labor, Disposal, Etc.): $22.50
Baseline Technology Unit Cost (Equipment Only): $60.00
Current costs start at around $100 and go up depending on power, brand, and styles. This is a premium of about 100% over fluorescent under cabinet lighting. LED costs are expected to continue to fall due to manufacturing improvements, economy of scale, and increased competition.
Costs for LED under-cabinet luminaires and baseline fluorescent luminaires were developed from an Internet pricing review.
Labor costs to install the LED under cabinet luminaires are assumed at 0.25 hours at $90/hr.
Costs for LED under-cabinet residential lighting are similar to costs for LED under cabinet office lighting.
Simple payback, new construction (years): 26.8
Simple payback, retrofit (years): 58.4
Cost Effectiveness is calculated using baseline energy use, best estimate of typical energy savings, and first cost. It does not account for factors such as impacts on O&M costs (which could be significant if product life is greatly extended) or savings of non-electric fuels such as natural gas. Actual overall cost effectiveness could be significantly different based on these other factors.
Reference and Citations:
LED Lighting Facts
U.S. Department of Energy
Solid State Lighting Program
U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy
Resources for Lighting Equipment Manufacturers and Retailers
Performance and Energy Efficiency Evaluation of Residential LED Under-Cabinet Lighting
Southern California Edison
2010 U.S. Lighting Market Characterization
U.S. Department of Energy Building Technologies Program
A Homeowner's Guide to Residential Under-cabinet Lighting: Getting Good Lighting for your Kitchen Counters
ASSIST recommends... (Alliance for Solid-State Illumination Systems and Technologies)
Residential Lighting End-Use Consumption Study: Estimation Framework and Initial Estimates
U.S. Department of Energy
DEER - Database for Energy Efficient Resources
California Energy Commission