Home>Blog>LED shop light guide: How to Choose the Best one

The introduction of LED lights has changed the entire lighting industry. Now, LED lights’ usage is everywhere, including remote controls, home lights, garden lights, fishing lights, floodlights, and whatnot. The efficiency and money-saving features of these lights are bringing a lot of advantages to us.

1. What is an LED shop light?
2. What types of LED Shop Lights are?
3. LED Shop Lights features 
4. LED Shop Lights application
5. LED shop lights vs. fluorescent
6. Do LED shop lights work in cold weather?
7. How to install led shop lights?
8. Can LED shop lights be flush mounted?

The light which is present everywhere how it cannot find its place in shop lights? Yes, LED shop lights are also gaining so much fame these days. In this blog, you will find answers to all your questions related to LED shop lights.

What is an LED shop light?

An LED shop light is the new version of fluorescent shop lights with LED technology. LED shop lights are an ideal way to light a small workplace or small area. Since these lights are commonly used in workshops and garages, they are called shop lights. It is ideal for all the places where you need a cost-effective yet straightforward lighting fixture to illuminate tiny workplaces such as workbench or tabletop.

A few decades ago, shops were filled with incandescent, which are then replaced with fluorescents. They offered more life as well as less energy consumption. But a revolutionary thing came into the picture very recently, and these LEDs are starting to give more benefits than fluorescent lights. It takes not much time for people to understand the benefits of LED and replace traditional bulbs.

LED shop lights give a longer lifetime and illuminate the surrounding by consuming very little energy. As a result, the power used to go waste in the form of heat is reduced drastically.

What types of LED Shop Lights are?

In the current market, each individual’s needs are different, and so the user’s atmosphere. Hence, to cater to all the requirements, LED shop lights are available in various types and with specific quality to counter the most commonly faced problems. So, let us have a look at the most common types of LED lights, which help to determine what is the best-LED light for illuminating your shop.

Vapor Proof LED Lights

Every business is different, and the way and atmosphere in which they also work differently. Often companies and individuals suffer to get the proper lighting fixture to illuminate the wet atmosphere. If you are one of them, you no need to worry since LED shop lights are available with vapor-proof technology. Vapor proof or vapor tight fixtures are specially designed to provide protection, reliability for space, and save energy. They are efficient enough to keep vapors and moisture from entering the LED fixture at any time.

The vapor proof LED shop lights are energy-efficient and built to provide powerful illumination in the harsh conditions. They can light the atmosphere in harsh environments by protecting the light fixtures from dirt, dust, and moisture. They arrive with durable construction with a metal fixture liner placed inside reinforced fiberglass with a high impact diffuser.

Integrated Fixtures

These types of LED shop lights resemble LED-ready fixtures; however, the similarities end here. The integrated LED lights arrive completely with the LED arrays, which are built into the fixtures. The integrated lights are designed to provide a specific lumen output and color, and they lack typical bulbs to replace them. Usually, these fixtures last for many years, and typically, they work for a decade and more. In the scenarios, they burned out the user normally shop for a new LED array or module rather than buying a replacement bulb. However, with the rate at which LED lights are evolving, it is also good to change the LED fixtures with the latest, and more energy-efficient LED bulbs.

Retrofitted Fixtures

In many cases, customers do not want to replace their existing fixtures, and sometimes even if they want to do so, the budget does not permit them to do so. If you are in the same position, all you need is buying retrofit LEDs. These lights use the existing light fixtures either through retrofit LED kits that fit into your existing lighting fixtures or through a screw in option. These lights help the customers to save time, and more importantly, it saves money. It is the best way to make the transition to new lighting at least expenses. The other benefit from these lights is, you can find numerous. Products and brands to get the desired look for your shop. However, if you are looking to get maximum lumen, it suffers a bit because the existing fixtures reduce the strength of producing more lumens.

LED Shop Lights features

The unique features of shop LED lights are the main reason everyone changes to LED lights to get more benefits from it. So, what are the prominent features? Here is the list of the essential elements that one should be aware of.

Light Output

Light output is the main feature of shop LED lights, which you need to take care of while buying your shop’s lights. In LED lights, the output is measured with lumens. If you are unfamiliar with this term, the below rough calculation may help you find the best lights for your shop.

In Incandescent bulbs, you can see 15 lumens per watt and 50 lumens per watt in Fluorescent lamps. If you are looking to replace a 100-watt incandescent bulb, you need to buy 1500 lumens LED, equivalent to 30-watt fluorescent. So you can determine the right amount of lumen for your shop with this calculation. If your current shop uses two fluorescent of 30 watts each, you can get one 3000 lumens LED light to replace with the same amount of brightness.

Color Temperature

Color temperature is a number that denotes how “blue” or “yellow” a light’s color is. Often people fail to understand this concept and end up with a lot of confusion. The color temperature is indicated with “K.” The below points will help you to get a rough idea about it.

  • If you are looking to get the same color that matches the classic incandescent bulb, you need to purchase a 2700K color temperature. It provides the yellow light to your shop.
  • If your preference is to get a slightly blue color light, which gives the same feel as halogen light, the 3000K light is a perfect choice.
  • The “neutral white” color temperature can be found with 4000K. It is the middle point between the yellow and blue color combination. If you are looking to get a perfect blend of these two colors, 4000K is an ideal choice.
  • The 5000K shop LED lights to come with a little more blueish color, and textiles and print shops commonly use it.
  • 6500K is called the natural daylight color.

Hence, the color combination choice depends on you since it needs to be selected as per the activity you conduct in your shop and as per your preference. Typically, lower color temperature gives more warm or relaxed illumination. Hence for a garage, a 4000K LED light can become an ideal choice. You can opt for below 4000K also. In the same way, the higher color temperature gives better color acuity. 5000K is naturally white, and it allows improved color perception.

Mounting Method

Major LED shop lights come with a chain that allows the light bulb to hang from the ceiling. And few lights allow flush mounting directly to the ceiling. Some LED shop lights consist of reflectors on the fixture side, which aids to direct light downwards. This option enhances the brightness for a specific place, and at the same time, it reduces the glare.

Daisy Chaining

If you need multiple LED shop lights to be installed in your shop for a single area, sometimes it becomes challenging to use separate wires run from every fixture to a single power source or outlet. In those scenarios, the daisy-chaining method helps to connect multiple fixtures after another. It helps to simplify the installation.

Water Resistance

The business involves conducting activities in various locations and conditions. If your light needs to be placed, wear the chances of getting contact with water is there, then you must purchase the water-resistance lights. They come with water resistance technology so you can fix them outside of your shop, even in the heavy rainy season and places.


CRI tells you how you can see any object clearly under the light. Picking the lights with the CRI becomes a tricky deal because you cannot determine the CRI by just looking at them. The CRI score ranges from 0 to 100. The higher the score, the light is more accurate and better.

You need to select the higher CRI LED lights because it makes you look the color of any object more natural. On the other hand, the lesser CRI would make the color of an object look different. The color accuracy of CRI will be mentioned on the package of every light, so you just need to select the one with more than 80 CRI scores. If your business is non-color, a critical task accuracy level of a minimum of 80 is ideal. If your work color plays a crucial role, you need to select CRI with above 90.

LED Shop Lights application

LED shop lights are spreading their arms in all major places. This transmission happened because of the broad applicability of the LED lights. So, let us look at where and all you can see LED shop life in the current world.

LED shop lights for garage

LED shop lights are most commonly used in the Garage. Fluorescent bulbs are the traditional choice for many people when it comes to illuminating the garages. But it is facing significant problems when the temperature goes down significantly. CFL starts to fail when the temperature goes below 50 degrees, but LED bulbs can work exceptionally well even if the temperature goes below 20 degrees. Due to this reason, many garage owners switching to LED lights for both interior and exterior usages.

LED shop lights for growing plants

The usage of lights for growing plants is not new. Using the LED lights, you can get numerous benefits such as low operating cost, low energy consumption, low heat, and low energy bills. The best thing about LED lights is you can get them in numerous sizes, shapes, and lumens. You can select the lights as per your needs and get the benefits out of it. LED lights even arrive in different colors, and you can choose the color, which increases the pace of your plant’s growth. All these features are hard to find in the CFL bulbs, and more importantly, they are a costlier affair.

LED shop lights for basement

The basement needs brighter light to illuminate the entire area. And most importantly, in most cases, you need to illuminate the whole basement area for a prolonged time. Hence, the LED lights are the perfect choice for basements. In basement lights also you can get numerous shapes, sizes, brands, and numerous output. By installing the high lumen lights, you can get the daylight kind of lighting for your basement.

LED shop lights with Bluetooth speakers

Technology has improved these days significantly. Many people like to do workout sessions with music. You can do it with the LED shop light with Bluetooth speakers. With these lights, you can get both the light and loud music from it.

LED shop lights with motion sensor

If you install the motion sensor LED lights, it brings a lot of advantages. It works on motion sensor technology. So, if you forget to turn off the light, no need to worry, it automatically switches off the lights. If the motion is not detected for over ten minutes, it automatically turns off the light.

LED shop lights with replaceable bulbs

The shop light with replaceable bulbs is the best option for the shops since, in the incident of bulb failure, you can replace it with the other LED bulbs. It allows you to use the fixture without the need for replacing the entire lighting system.

LED shop lights with remote

The world is becoming smarter, and the LED lights are not falling behind in this race. Now you have the option to control your shop lights with remote control. It saves a lot of time for the shop owners, especially if you need to switch on and off the lights more frequently. Additionally, this feature proves handy if the shop is handled by the physically challenged people who find it difficult to go and manually turn them on and off. With a single press of a button, you can control all the lights in a flash.

LED shop lights vs. fluorescent


Indeed, the LED shop lights are not in the market for quite a long time. But so far, the average is showing that a light fixture lasts for a minimum of 25,000 hours. It is more than the CFL bulbs, which give around 8,000 hours. That means LED light lasts three to four times longer than CFL.


To understand this point clearly, let’s see a comparison. For example, if you need to burn a CFL and LED for 20 years, the number of bulbs you need is just one, and in the case of CFL, it will be three. The CFL initial cost is less but in the long run, LED becomes cost-effective. Even the LED’s energy consumption is less than CFL, and in all aspects, LED is a better choice since you need to burn the light at least 8 to 10 hours a day.

Energy consumption

Well, there is no much difference between the CFL and LED if you compare them together. However, LED has the upper hand slightly. To make you understand this fact, we need to compare them with incandescents. CFL work approximately 70 % efficient than the incandescent and on the other hand, LEDs are 90% more efficient than incandescents. If you compare the wattage comparison, LED consumes approximately half of the wattage a CFL consumes.


The environment is becoming a significant concern in recent days.  The management of waste is causing a lot of problems even in the developed nations. The effect of LED on nature is far less if you compare it with all other lights’ modes. On the other hand, CFL contains mercury content, which is very dangerous to all living beings and the environment. Mercury can contaminate both water and land if it is handled carelessly.

Considering all these factors, LED shop lights are better than all other lights. Hence we are seeing LED shop lights are replacing fluorescent tubes in almost all shops.

Do LED shop lights work in cold weather?

The answer is yes, but it depends on the other things as well. A standard LED fixture may stop working in the cold atmosphere, but you can get waterproof lights to counter the moisture. And also, you can get vapor-proof lights to combat moisture, dust, and other things. They prevent moisture from going inside the fixtures, and hence you can install them in the cold places.

What are the best-LED shop lights?

Selecting the high quality led shop lights are essential for every shop. If you are looking to get the best in the market, there is some consideration. The CRI must be above 80, and other necessary things, such as the light’s brand, play a crucial role in the light fixture’s long duration.

How many led shop lights do I need?

Well, many people get stuck in determining how much LED shop lights are enough for them. However, there isn’t any thumb rule which fits everyone. The reason is the need, and work type determines the number of lights and lumens. If you are working in a shop like electronic items repair, jewelry works, they need more lights, and it also demands high lumens. In the same way for other works, they won’t need many light fixtures.

A garage requires around 80 to 100 lumens/sq. feet. Let’s assume you have one car garage area. In this scenario, usually, it will be 22 feet deep and 12 feet wide, making it 264 square feet.  So, you need to acquire 26,400 lumens light as per the recommended rule. Four T8 8feet V Shape LED Tubes are enough to illuminate a one-car garage.

How to install led shop lights?

The below-provided two-step is the general tips and recommendations. But for more specific details, you need to follow the manual provided by the manufacturer.

Determining the Installation Location

The first and foremost thing you need to pay attention to is the location of installing shop light. You need to ensure that the fixture is placed directly above your work area or work table. Along with this, you need to make sure the mounting surface or ceiling can handle the fixture’s weight.

Most LED shop lights can be connected with a regular wall plug. Hence, you need to ensure you safely run a cable to your LED light. You need to be more careful if daisy chaining is done and confirm that your light’s power draw should not exceed cable. And at last, make sure the light is mounted at a comfortable height. A light that is too high is not enough to light the workspace; on the other hand, it will cause significant problems, including serious injury to death if it is too low.

Mounting the Shop Light Fixture

During mounting a light, you must take all the safety measures. It is also essential to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer to make sure everything works perfectly. You need to turn off the shop’s power supply before touching the cables from the safety perspective. Once mounting is done, reconnect the power source and make sure it is working correctly.

If you are using a retrofit light, it requires a fluorescent tube to be replaced with an LED tube light.

Can LED shop lights be flush mounted?

Yes, the flush mounting light usually comes with dome shape fixtures, and they are easy to flush mount to the ceilings. Since flush mounting fixtures are mounted close to the ceiling, they offer better ceiling clearance. They are also used as decorative items and a vital source of ambient lighting.

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