Benefits of working with a North American Lighting Manufacturer
As an owner of a CEA business, one of the biggest financial investments you will likely have to make for your business is the selection and purchase of a lighting system. Whether you are growing in a greenhouse or in an indoor facility, choosing the right lights is essential to ensure that you achieve proper crop yields and plant health, as well as meeting your production goals.
The consequences of choosing the wrong lights can be dire. If you choose incorrectly, you could experience poor plant growth, loss of crops, and financial losses. With the cost of any lighting system – HID, LED or a Hybrid – being a significant investment, you will want to make sure you choose the right manufacturer for your exact lighting needs. Of course, there are numerous lighting manufacturers to choose from, so we have put together some information you may want to consider when looking for lights for a new or retrofit lighting project.
ADVANTAGES OF CHOOSING A NORTH AMERICAN LIGHT MANUFACTURER
- Readily available inventory of product and parts
- Commitment to North American quality standards and certifications
- Understanding of North American markets
- Local sales, customer service and technical support
How do you go about choosing the right lighting company?
One of the first steps in selecting new lights, is choosing an experienced and respected lighting manufacturer. One of the very few companies that manufactures its luminaires in North America is P.L. Light Systems, located in Beamsville, Ontario.
P.L. Light Systems has been delivering professional, high quality, light systems to the North American horticultural industry for over 41 years. The company manufactures its products in Southern Ontario, close to the Canadian/US border and near all major transportation routes.
Readily available inventory of product and parts
One major advantage in choosing a North American based lighting manufacturer such as P.L. Light Systems, is that we are not as reliant on foreign produced components as many other lighting manufacturers. It is more than likely that you, as a customer, have experienced some of the supply chain delays that have been common in the past few years, particularly around the delivery times of products being shipped from overseas.
It has always been the focus of the P.L. Light Systems’ team, to source as many parts for our products locally. In fact, currently over 80 per cent of the components in our lighting products are sourced from North American suppliers.
As well, due to our expertise in the market, we understand the time schedules of growers and their seasons and we seek to ensure that we are fully stocked with replacement parts when, for example, growers are doing maintenance such as re-lamping. Our central location in Southern Ontario means that you will receive your parts (in most cases) within a few days.
Commitment to North American Quality Standards and Certifications
As noted earlier, many lighting manufacturers claiming to be North American companies actually source all their parts from offshore suppliers and then just assemble them in North America; or even buy fully assembled luminaires from overseas OEM manufacturers and simply apply their name to the products. That doesn’t necessarily mean that these luminaires and/or components are poor quality, however, when you choose products manufactured in North America there is typically a higher level of assurance.
Two important factors to consider when purchasing lights are quality standards and certifications. Before you buy, it is important to make sure that your lights have been certified for safe electrical use In North America by an accredited certification body such as CSA or UL. In addition, it is also important that your lights are listed on the DLC Qualified Product List (QPL) so you know their outputs have been tested by an accredited third-party lab, and that what you are buying will perform as the manufacturer has claimed. (DLC listing is also a must for anyone who is planning on applying for energy rebates on their lights).
fully understanding the Terms and conditions of your purchase
When you are sourcing a new or retrofit lighting system for your CEA facility, you want to make sure you understand the terms and conditions of your purchase before you sign. One of the best ways to do this is to go through the lighting manufacturer’s quote with your sales representative to ensure you are clear on every aspect of the sales contract. The experienced sales team at P.L. Lights has a commitment to helping customers understand all aspects of their lighting purchase before making a decision.
Also, you will want to understand exactly what the company’s warranties cover. Our company is known for our uncompromising commitment to quality, backed up by our comprehensive warranty policy.
You will also want to know that if something goes wrong, or if you need service or parts, you know you have ready access to the support you need. P.L. Lights Systems’ sales team is dedicated to serving our customers, with Regional Sales Managers across North America assigned to support specific states and provinces. This team is backed up by an inside sales team, technical team and customer service team that is available Monday to Friday (EST) 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Your calls and questions will be answered in person during working hours and our team members strive to respond as quickly as possible.
Caveat Emptor – One final word on buying lights from an overseas manufacturer
One final word on purchasing from manufacturers outside of North America, is understanding import duties, taxes, and shipping costs.
Many customers are not aware that any products manufactured in China and delivered directly to the US, are subject to a 25 percent import tariff and other taxes and import duties, which you – the customer – could be personally responsible for if those costs have not been already factored into your purchase.
So, if you are purchasing lights as a US customer, it is even more important to read the sales terms and conditions to avoid any unexpected costs. Shipping costs can also be a major factor when purchasing lights manufactured outside of North America, so be sure to get a shipping quote in writing before you sign.
If you are currently considering the purchase of a new or retrofit lighting system and are considering all the factors before making your purchase, then we invite you to reach out to one of our experienced sales professionals at P.L. Light Systems. We will be happy to meet with you by phone, on a video call, or in-person and help you get the exact lighting system you need for your operational goals.