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Best Types of Lighting for Commercial Buildings of All Sizes  

hawkeye employees installing lighting in a commercial building

Class-A office buildings, expansive distribution centers, civic or educational institutions, retail centers, hospitality destinations, you name it—commercial buildings are structures designed exclusively for housing commercial-related activities and where business activities are conducted. They are designed to be a venue for customers, employees and other related activities that ultimately support your business.

In this article, we are going to provide recommendations and insight on the best types of lighting and lighting infrastructure based on the type and size of your commercial space.

The Right Lighting for Your Commercial Building

The basics first. It goes without saying the right kind of lighting is critical based on the type of commercial space you’re building or renovating, including any individual rooms or interior spaces within your structure. It’s all an integral aspect of the architectural framework, functionality and safety of each space. This is because it aids in:

Business Identification

Lighting promotes vision. As a result, it is what encourages a customer to take note of a commercial building. Lights make a place stand out. If a commercial building is well-lit, customers will notice it more easily. They can even get an idea of the type of business that is conducted in the building. Conversely, if a building is not well-lit, customers might not notice it and go elsewhere.

Aesthetic Enhancement

Lighting also plays a role in enhancing the aesthetics of a building. Lights, especially the ones used for indoor lighting, accentuate the decorative designs of the building. Lights can also serve as aesthetic elements themselves and be used to decorate the building. These aesthetic qualities can serve as the basis for attracting customers to the building. A major concern of businesses is how to attract customers via marketing their goods and services. As such, the ability of lighting to attract customers is highly appreciated.

Precision and Quality Management

A commercial building is not a casual environment. Business transactions are taking place, goods are being delivered, and services are being rendered. These events need to be performed at a certain level of accuracy and excellence. If not, the results will be subpar, and it can potentially harm the business.

Proper lighting helps to create and maintain a certain level of professionalism. This is because a well-lit building enables those working to see what they are doing properly. Because they see well, they can pay better attention to their jobs and do them more excellently. This reduces the chances of mistakes and improves the quality of products and services.

Characteristics of Good Lighting in Commercial Buildings

Well Illuminated

Commercial buildings need bright lighting. This is because those working on transactions or delivering goods and services need to be able to see what they are doing clearly without having to strain their eyes. The same also applies to their customers. This helps to ensure that mistakes are not made and that the best quality of work is delivered.


While bright light is necessary for commercial buildings, prolonged exposure to bright light can cause eye damage. In the same vein, dim light can lead to eye strain. This is a significant hazard to the workforce and even regular customers.

That is why at Hawkeye Electric, we recommend adopting lighting that is eye-friendly and reduces the danger of eye damage.


Commercial buildings are sensitive places. They host a large number of people on account of the high volume of transactions that occur there daily. They are also storage points for products and sensitive documents. As a result, great care needs to be taken to ensure that they are adequately protected. This includes reducing the risk of a fire outbreak by installing lights that are not easily flammable.

Budget Friendly

A major objective in business is to maximize profits while reducing operating costs. As such, when a project of light installation is considered, it is important to take note of how much the lighting would cost. It is always advisable to opt for lighting that is affordable and saves the business money.

When affordable lighting is being considered, one should not consider only the installation cost. The energy consumption of that lighting system should also be noted.

Low Maintenance

A sound lighting system will not require high maintenance. Now, this does not mean that it shouldn’t be maintained or supervised from time to time. It simply means that it will not cost the company much in terms of resources or personnel to ensure that it remains functional. A sound lighting system should be capable of working effectively with little or no supervision.

The Best Types of Lighting

The basic types of lighting that work best for commercial buildings include the following:

LED Lighting

Light-emitting diode (LED) lighting is a type of lighting obtained from the passage of electricity through a microchip. LEDs use little energy and can last for up to 100,000 hours. They are great for indoor lighting as well as outdoors. They are aesthetically pleasing and can be used for decorative purposes. As a result, LEDs have a high adoption rate in all types of commercial buildings, regardless of size or industry.

Full-Spectrum Lighting

This type of lighting replicates the appearance of natural daylight. It is called full-spectrum lighting because it emits light rays from the full spectrum of light (from red to violet). This enables it to make all colors appear rich under its light. Full-spectrum lighting is adopted by several types of commercial buildings because it is an excellent form of indoor lighting. It is eye-friendly and can be fitted into bulbs or tubes for the ceiling. They are especially well-suited for offices and conference halls.

Halogen Lighting

One of the basic types of lighting used in commercial buildings is halogen lighting. Halogen lights are made up of wires contained in a quartz tube, which is also filled with halogen gas. When electricity is passed through the wire, it reacts with the gas in the tube and produces light. Halogen lighting produces particularly powerful beams of light. As a result, they are usually used as floodlights, spotlights and other forms of bright light. Halogen lights have a lifespan of approximately 5,000 hours. They are typically used outdoors, in factories and in large warehouses.

Fluorescent Lighting

Fluorescent light is produced by passing an electrical arc through an inert gas. When electricity passes through the arc, white light is produced. Though white light is what is produced, the color of the bulb casing determines the color emitted.

Fluorescent lights are a favorite lighting system for commercial buildings, particularly small office buildings. This is because they expend little energy — only one-fourth of what a regular bulb uses — and can last for up to 24,000 hours.

Incandescent Lighting

One of the oldest and most basic types of lighting is incandescent lighting. Incandescent lighting is made up of bulbs that contain narrow metal filaments. When electric current passes through the filaments, they begin to glow.

Incandescent lighting is popularly used in commercial buildings, such as offices and warehouses because it is a cheaper option and requires little maintenance. However, they have a lifespan of only 1,000 hours.

Let Hawkeye Electric Illuminate Your Business

Hawkeye Electric is an electrical company based in Phoenix, Arizona. We offer premium quality and innovative solutions to businesses that are in the process of construction, remodeling or maintenance. We deeply value integrity and professionalism, with customer satisfaction being our top priority, and we are poised to bring excellence to every project we undertake.

Do you need help assessing the appropriate types of lighting and infrastructure for your commercial structure? Our team wants to help! Contact us today and discover the solutions that will take your business to the next level.

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