The Importance of Sign and Address Lighting

Searching for a destination in the dark can be challenging. We have all tried to find a particular address in the evening hours. Even with the use of a GPS, destinations cannot be easily found unless the address or business sign is illuminated. Poorly lit signage and addresses can also be a safety issue. Emergency services may be delayed thus endangering lives. 


Sign Lighting

Signs can be illuminated in several different ways. Lettering that is hollow and lifted away from a sign surface can be backlit. Products such as LED strip and modules can be placed inside the letters facing toward the sign surface. This will cause the letters to be viewed in silhouette. Signs can also be illuminated from above using a very wide flood fixture. These fixtures are normally equipped with canopies and extension arms. Light sources can include line voltage high output fluorescent or low voltage LED panels and lamps. Illuminating signage from the front is most common. Directional fixtures such as flood lights or bullets with wide beam angle lamps can be used to complete this task. It will be necessary to keep any plant material away from the light projection. Failure to do so could result in an obtrusive shadow.  It is always important to be aware of the color and reflectivity of a sign surface. This is a good practice especially if the letters are made of polished metal. Remember; the more light you project at reflective surfaces the better the chance for glare. Keep the glare out of there!


Address Lighting

Addresses can be challenging to illuminate. It is very important to consider the viewing angle to avoid potential glare. Many address numbers are in close proximity to windows. This will require the contractor to select the proper beam angle and wattage of the lamp. Filters and louvers may also be added to the selected fixture to avoid light leaking into windows. To avoid this entirely, a contractor may select an illuminated address sconce. This fixture can be mounted directly on to a wall or column. The light usually passes through a translucent lens allowing the address numbers to be seen in bold.  Mailboxes are often built on brick pedestals with the address numbers placed on frosted glass block. This address can simply be lit by repurposing an area style path light. Start by removing the top canopy of this fixture. Instead of a ground spike use a flange mount at the bottom of the stem. The lamp will cause the glass to glow and back light the address numbers.   Illuminated address bollards can also be installed at the end of a driveway. This type of fixture is primarily used if the property is set back away from the main road.   Many cities across the country require that all residential properties have an illuminated address marker. 


Signs and address are everywhere. Adding these services can be a great way to add revenue to any lighting business. And practice makes perfect!

Kevin SmithComment