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After being bitten by Chinese imports in the past, BSS LED Limited decided to bring their manufacturing back to the UK. Co-Director, Steve Bell, explains how you can ensure a quality switchover when changing to LEDs made in the UK.

It is difficult to ignore the growth of LED lighting and the vast range of products that are currently available from a variety of sources. Changing your existing factory lighting to LED will save you at least 65% on your energy costs and could provide a capital payback in less than two years. But with so many claims about life span and warranties, how do you make the correct choice that will ensure your investment will be protected? What are your options if your new LED lighting fails after a short period of time and your supplier suggests that the products are not covered by warranty due to technical reasons that you don’t understand?

Having experienced the lack of quality and adherence to safety standard with many products manufactured in China, BSS LED Limited took the decision to produce its entire range of Factory LED Lighting in Manchester. Historically, we have become far too reliant on Chinese and Far Eastern products and many UK companies are now leaving Chinese manufacturing and returning to manufacturing in the UK.

It’s worth remembering that some Chinese manufacturers are also new to LED lighting and, unless you really understand LED technology, Thermal Management and Optical Design, it’s very difficult to produce a product that will perform consistently. Simply going to a lighting trade fair in Guangzhou, China does not instantly turn you into an LED expert.

The European Electrical Safety Standard and other European Directives require that all electrical products are safe and CE marked. Unfortunately, this seems not to be policed and many importers of LED


products do not understand their legal obligation as the European importer. Before you invest in any LED lighting, ensure that your chosen supplier can provide you with CE documentation and certification in its own name and not in the name of the manufacturer in the Far East. It is the responsibility of the European importer to adhere to CE certification. Whilst this is not a guarantee of quality, it is reasonable to assume that anyone going to the trouble of correctly certifying their product in Europe should have considered the product quality.

Insist on a branded LED module from reputable companies such as Osram, Philips, and Cree etc and avoid unbranded LEDs. Reputable manufacturers will supply products that will provide a constant light level and colour. Equally, the LED driver

or power supply should be from a proven, reliable source. Remember, everyone will tell you their products are great!

However, the most important rule in changing your LED factory lighting is to, firstly, put up at least one sample to allow you to see and judge the light levels and distribution. Computer files from Relux and Dialight are good but there is no substitute for the real thing. Your investment can only be protected when you are certain that you have made the right choice of LED supplier and have chosen the right product specific to the needs of your factory.

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