What do you need to know before installing lights on your arena? Not all electricians understand horses and Not all lights are the same…
So, where do we start. Ideally planning arena lighting should happen in the design stage even if you are not looking to install until a later date. Why because considering where to place poles and where your closest power supply will be may save you time and money in the future….
Taking into consideration why we want to light up our riding arena. We need to ask ourselves a few questions to ensure we get the outcome we desire and avoid any disappointment. Do we want just enough light on our arena to enable us to train our horses safely after the sun has gone down, or are we after competition lighting? Questions to ask yourself include;
What am I using the horse arena for? Is it private use or commercial use.
How much light do I need on my outdoor arena? Commercial premises need to meet the Standard Requirements to comply. Whilst if I am training at home lesser light is required.
Where do I need the light on my arena? If my riding discipline is dressage, I need light around the fence so I can ride my lines. If I am a showjumper, the jumps are generally positioned in the centre of the arena.
How do I reduce shadows on my arena? If reducing shadows important to you. This may be of particular importance if you are training young horses for show jumping for both the safety of yourself and building confidence within your horse.
Where do I position my arena? If you are looking to install lights on your arena. This could save you time and money.
Do you require council approval for lighting up your horse arena? This is another question that could save you time and money. Councils have different requirements on whether or not approval is required. It is best to check with your local council to see if a DA is required.
Taking on board your requirements and creating a lighting plan will provide you with the light you expect to receive before the lights are even installed it will prove the Lux Levels and uniformity of the light. High uniformity will reduce shadows on your horse arena.
When it comes to which lights to choose most electricians whilst good at there job. Will sell you what they have available and may not fully understand the features of the lights and what they are capable of. Let alone take into consideration the needs of the horse and rider.
LED lights have changed the lighting landscape. The benefits of upgrading existing light fixtures to LED’s over traditional lighting include;
1.LED lights have a longer lifespan
2.LED lights are more energy efficient
3.LED Lights emit a higher quality light
4.LED Lights are lower maintenance
5.LED Lights are instant on and off and do not have a warm-up or cool down period
6.LED lights are directional, you get more light where you want and need it
In summary LED Lighting for your arena will provide you with a “better quality” light, with lower lifetime costs.
There are two types of LED lights. C.O.B (Chip on board) Technology and SMD (Surface Mounted Diode) Technology.
C.O.B LED Flood Lights use a smaller amount of LED lights which are individually controlled by chips. This control enables the LED’s to operate the same in terms of lifetime. The same lifetime means we replace all of the lights at once, not a globe here and there. The light is directed through a Perspex lens at specific angles (60/90/120 degrees) this reduces both the loss of light & glare.
S.M.D LED technology is basically lots of little LED Lights that are hard to control and rely on a deflector to direct the light downward, creating high glare environment, and little control over the light and LED’s. This is a cheaper way of manufacturing the light, with less reliability of the end product.
A little more technical on the comparison between different LED’s lights. The lifetime varies between different technologies and brands. The lifetime advertised on the box can be altered by things such as temperature. In Australia we can experience extremely hot conditions both inside and out of a shed. So, when looking into what is the safe operating temperature and what features the lights have too control temperature to get the most value from your light is advised. What to look for… Larger heat sink (the ability for the light to draw heat away from the LED’s), and things like one-way valves designed to keep the light cool. This also shows that they haven’t filled important parts like the driver with silicone (which traps heat) as a cheap alternative to meet the IP rating for moisture and dust.
Whether you are looking to install new lights around your indoor Equestrian arena or outdoor Equestrian arena or already have lights and poles and are looking to upgrade to LED lights. We are able to provide you with a lighting simulation taking into consideration the size of your arena, placement & height of poles, & the purpose of the arena to ensure you achieve your expected lighting requirements.
We recommend Sonaray LED Lights. They provide high quality LED Flood Light designed to meet the requirements of both the Australian Market and ideally suited for the Equestrian Industry. With low maintenance, low glare, high uniformity and longevity. Backed by a 5 year warranty and Australian based customer service.
Sonaray is an OEM Manufacturer (producers all of the components for the LED light within their factory). Sonaray LED Flood Lights (Outdoor arenas) and High Bay LED Lights (Indoor arenas), are manufactured to the highest standards.
The features include:
Variable angle lens, reducing light spillage and increasing light on the arena
Low glare technology
A large “heat sink area’ to effectively distribute the heat
One-way heat valves on both the light and driver unit
Gaskets to meet the IP rating (opposed to filling with silicone)
Replaceable driver unit (after about 50,000hrs) reduces lifetime costs and landfill
Designed to fade at the same time, reducing the need to hire a cherry picker multiple times to replace of fix lighting. Reducing lifetime costs
If you have further questions or would like to take up our offer of a FREE lighting simulation to suit your horse arena. Please call on 0405 497 582 or email us at [email protected] today.