Lighten up with electrical options

March 15, 2011

Whether you are building a new dispensary or remodeling an existing one, lighting is a critical design element.

Whether you are building a new dispensary or remodeling an existing one, lighting is a critical design element.

Eyewear is one of the most difficult types of merchandise to display well. It's difficult for patients to appreciate delicate details and subtle colors if the lighting is bad. Good lighting helps to sell eyewear. Poor lighting limits sales.

Halogen lighting is the workhorse of optical display. Halogen track lights can be several feet away from the merchandise and still be strong enough to bring out the sparkle and color of the frames.

The downside of halogen lighting is that it creates heat so it is best used where there is plenty of air circulation.

LED (light-emitting diode) lighting has the advantage of being cool and energy efficient, but it does not have the focused intensity or true white color of halogen. It can be used in display showcases where the source of the light is close to the merchandise.

The most effective dispensary lighting scheme uses a mix of all three types of light sources.

Layered lighting

Layered lighting means using multiple light sources to magnetize patients and put them in a buying mood. Lighting enhances the perceived value of the eyewear and makes it easier for a patient to say "yes" to a higher-priced frame.

To light a dispensary properly, try a layered scheme using general, display, and accent lighting.

General lighting

Recessed down lights (also called "cans") provide a more sophisticated look for general lighting. To meet building code energy requirements we use fluorescent "quad" lamps in can-type down lights.