Charlie Munger taught his business partner Warren Buffett one important lesson, “it’s far better to buy a great company at a fair price than a fair company at a great price.” This principle holds true when purchasing LED products. Today, many distributors, ESCO’s, lighting contractors and end-users have gone for the fair product at a great price because they think they are saving money and increasing their bottom line. What many of these buyers fail to realize is that there are many hidden costs with the fair products that they did not consider.
What are some of these hidden costs and what questions should you be asking?
1. When buying directly from an overseas manufacturer, did you consider the total cost of shipping the product from overseas factories to your location (packaging, shipping, import duties)?
2. Most of these direct orders require 100% payment in advance. Do you really want to tie up your money anywhere from two to four months? Will the company still be in business when it comes time to honor their warranties?
3. Did you have to order more product than needed to meet minimum order requirements?
4. Can you afford late deliveries? Is there a penalty for late shipments? Have you had to reschedule projects because of delayed shipments? Have delays in shipment caused you to miss commitments to your customers? Have you lost business due to unreliable service?
5. Did the delivered product meet your specifications or expectations? Did it meet your customer’s expectations? Do you have a “Plan B” if the product gets rejected? Can you return rejected materials?
6. Have you verified that the product’s UL number is real (lookup at www.ul.com) and that this number applies to the product you received? Have you checked with DLC (www.designlights.org) to see if the product you received is listed and qualifies for utility company rebates? What will it cost to remove and replace non-qualified product? The labor cost is usually much more than the actual products. NOTE: Many DLC listed Type D dual-mode LED tubes are UL tested and approved for one, but not both operating modes; Type A (ballast-compatible) or Type B (line voltage).
7. Is product safety a concern? Electrical shock can occur when installing double-end LED tubes (without anti-shock protection) into live sockets. Did you know that arc flash is inherent in lighting systems with electronic ballasts which can lead to nasty burns? Also, fluorescent lamps can explode if mistakenly inserted into a fixture that has been wired for a single-ended LED tube. NOTE: Both electrical shock and burn hazards can be eliminated by removing the existing ballast, rewiring directly to both sockets and then installing an LED tube with UL1598C anti-shock protection.
8. Did you know that a ballast-compatible LED lamp must have a working ballast to operate? When the ballast fails, what is the total cost to the end-user to replace the ballast? Were you aware that the ballast draws an additional 2-3 watts/lamp? Over a five year period, a ballast-compatible tube can cost the end-user an extra $18.00/lamp (extra energy, new ballast and labor to replace the ballast).
After factoring in all these hidden costs, the actual price of the fair LED tube at the great price doubles, or even triples. Can you REALLY afford to buy a fair LED product? Aleddra’s SureFit DBA Plus LED tube eliminates all these hidden costs and concerns, and is truly the best value in today’s market.
For more information on the SureFit DBA+ tube, please email [email protected] or call us at 425-430-4555.