So many things are different today than they were even just a few years ago. Technology continues to run rampant. Social Media has given us a means to fast and sometimes accurate information through blogs, etc. One of the biggest evolution of changes that we've seen develop is the amount of information available on our Manufacturer Product web sites.
In addition to the standard items (Product Specification Sheets and Wiring details), we have seen a plethora of web tools developed to assist our clients every day. Manufacturer websites are no longer just a place to find the general product information but instead, has become a portal of valuable information to assist your everyday needs.
Having all of this information available is a great thing that keeps us optimal but often knowing it is there and where to find it is the challenge for us. Most customers thought process starts and ends with getting frustrated navigating manufacturers site before they find the true gems. We thought we would put all of the highlights of each of our manufacturers web tools in this article for you.
Breaking the web tools in to categories might be the easiest road-map we can give you in this quest. (Energy Related Tools, Administrative/Operational Tools, Instructional/Educational Tools)
Energy Related Web Tools:
Energy Codes are still changing in that states continue to adopt new codes. For an up to date state breakdown of which code is current in that state and a copy of the code verbage, LC&D offers a great resource tool at here.
Also, Lutron offers the state by state breakdown along with other information on current rebates and technical white papers on Codes. You can find them here.
There is also a link from Acuity Controls for up to date Sustainability Codes (ASHRAE 189.1, Greenglobes and LEED V4)
Today, when converting existing down lights to new screw in CFL and LED lamps, the million dollar questions are 'will they dim?' and 'how well will they dim?. Lutron has built a vast array of other manufacturers products and tested them against ALL of their dimming systems. This LED Selection tool provides you with a guaranteed performance compatibility between the chosen lamp and dimmer. You can narrow your search by Lamp data, dimming system, voltage and product manufacturer. When your choice is made, you can print a full report that details your dimming high and low range as well as the amount of lamps permitted on the dimmer (inrush quality). Find it here.
Adminitrative/Operational Web Tools:
If you have an iPhone or iPad, Lutron has developed a tremendous family of APPS for all product families. Lutron has always had a represented their Residential Product offering first class in the industry.
On their Residential APP (Pleasance), you have all of the information at your fingertips in one location. Pleasance offers you a gallery of residential photos, a pictoral display of all of Lutrons residential products, written specifications, installation documents, PDF Literature pieces, You Tube Product Videos, CAD Files and Technical Application notes
If your interest is in Lutron Commercial Systems, there is a new Commercial Solutions APP as well. On this APP, you will find a gallery of product photos, application photos, product specification sheets, written specifications, installation documents and more.
Lutron also has developed a very powerful Shading APP. A very informative visual tool for Lutron's full line of Shading Fabrics Collection. With their Fabric Collections APP, you can visually see any of the fabrics offered, search by fabric type, choose a fabric based on the application/elevation orientation, order fabric samples and more.
If you are looking for specific literature for any of Lutron's systems, you can request product Literature online here.
There are also an array of design tools to assist you in product detail risers and system designs in both Lutron and LC&D. These tools allow you to build your systems as well as create and edit one line details. The downside is that these programs will sometimes allow you to build a system outside the boundaries of the system limits. We still ask that you involve our design group in your layout requirements to assure the system components are correct. LC&D One Line Generator and Lutron's Grafik QS Design Tool are both great tools when you need a quick detail.
With the increasing popularity of Revit, you can find Revit and BIM files on line as well.
Lutron Revit files Here
LC&D BIM Files Here
Acuity Brands BIM Files (across all product lines) Here
You Tube has become a big part of Social Media - again, prior to a few years ago, it was a site to post and find a videos on practically anything imaginable mostly of leisure content. Recently, manufacturers are utilizing You Tube as a means of hosting many product instructional videos. There is a very comprehensive list of videos available for many of our Lutron products including dimmers, sensors, shading products and more. Find the link here.
One of the industry changes that we see becoming more important because of the many certifications and organizational requirements coming up every day is the need for our clients to attend seminars for learning units. We often conduct live presentations but again, due to scheduling and time its difficult for all of our customers to attend these events. We have an educational portal from Lutron that will allow you to attend many online product seminars (webinars) and log your learning hours for completion. Lutron's LCI (Lighting Control Institute) is a free portal but requires a login account for access. Some sample course topics are Energy Savings, Energi Savr Node, Grafik Eye QS and Healthcare Solutions.
These hyperlinks in this article are just a few of the highlighted areas of their web sites. The hope is that you find any of them of value and link them to your desktop for quick and easy access.