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EVO LED bulkheads save time & money

With responsibility for over 4,000 domestic properties, and in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy, Fife-based social landlord, Kingdom Housing Association, decided to act immediately to increase the general and emergency lighting provision in all their communal areas, over and above any likely guidance emanating from the Hackitt report.

Aiming to keep their tenants as safe as possible, and not wanting to wait for inquiry findings, they decided to go ahead with a proposal to retrofit emergency lighting into those existing blocks of three storeys and above, that did not already have this fitted. The challenge they faced was to procure a product that did not require rewiring, as most of these blocks were wired in two core cabling.  

With the need to keep costs, installation time and disruption to a minimum, and with various products given consideration, it was Scolmore’s innovative EVO LED bulkheads which provided the solution to this full refit project.

Andy Walls, Kingdom Housing Association’s property maintenance manager, responsible for overseeing the installation project, commented: “After researching various products we found that Scolmore’s Inceptor EVO LED Bulkhead range was ideal in meeting with our specifications. The fitting is capable of working on two core cabling whilst still providing battery supply for the emergency operation of the fittings. The fitting is also capable of supplying a background light during the day, as it has the capability to have the LEDs on at a reduced rating or turned off fully. This also suited our needs as we have several blocks that have darker areas and this would also provide better security and comfort to our tenants.”

The Inceptor EVO Bulkhead was designed by Scolmore with the contractor very much in mind. It is quick to install and simple to use and offers a number of features and benefits unmatched by competitor products. As well as integrating the control gear and the light source within the diffuser, the bulkhead has the added benefit of a Flow plug which allows for fast and simple connection and disconnection for testing and maintenance of the luminaire.

With other bulkhead products, the installer will need to first unscrew the diffuser and then the gear tray, fix the base to the wall, terminate the conductor, re-attach the gear tray and re-screw the diffuser. Scolmore has taken away the need for time-consuming and unnecessary screws and integrated the control gear and light source within the diffuser and added a Flow connector. The installer, therefore, simply removes the diffuser, fits the base to the wall/ceiling, wires the conductor into the flow connector and secures the diffuser in place.  

The products specified for installation by Kingdom Housing Association was the EVO microwave sensor & emergency version for the emergency lighting provision and for the replacement of general lighting it was the EVO standard bulkhead.

Continues Andy Walls: “With the responsibility for overseeing the installation and project budgeting I had to ensure that everything was carefully considered to ensure we are getting the very best value from the products and services we utilise. What is so great about working with Scolmore and having this product designed to meet our requirements, is that they have enabled us to save time and money on a lot of aspects of this project, as well as ensuring delivery of the product to meet our timescales.

“The fact that the bulkheads are so quick and easy to install with the minimum amount of cabling and no rewiring required meant a huge saving in labour costs. With no disruption from major works in the common areas for us and our tenants, it meant that Health and Safety issues were minimised, along with noise and mess. In addition, the energy efficiency of these bulkheads, their 50,000 hours of life, plus the minimum amount of maintenance required to service them, all added up to a positive situation for us.

“The return on investment that was projected by Scolmore was also appealing. The projection on the life of the units is 50,000 hours on average lifespan of the fitting which means that we will not need to replace these for a further 10 years, and with no maintenance visits required to replace the old 2D Fluorescent fittings approx. every 2 years, this more than pays for the new units with no ongoing maintenance costs. The degradation of the light fittings is also far less than the fluorescent type, thus providing our tenants with a good light source during the lifespan of the fitting.

“We also looked at the environmental aspect of the project and concluded that we would be reducing the pollution to the environment from not having to recycle the old fluorescent tubes - eliminating the harmful gases and pollutants that these products produce and also using less energy over the lifespan of the product.”

Scolmore’s IP65-rated Inceptor EVO LED bulkhead is available in two formats, Circular and Eye-Lid, with each format offered in four different options – Standard; Emergency; Microwave Sensor; and Emergency and Microwave Sensor combined. This provides contractors and installers with a range of easy-to-install LED bulkheads, suitable for a variety of domestic and commercial applications including walkways, corridors, stairwells and communal areas, within public areas such as schools, offices, and shopping malls and urban spaces. In addition, vandal-resistant metal housings with an IK10 rating are available in Circular, Eye-Lid and Grille formats to enhance the potential applications for the range.

The installation of EVO bulkheads at Kingdom Housing Association dwellings is an on-going project as they aim to continue to retrofit products to replace defective units well into the future.