Common Problems with Neon, Fluorescent and Led Lighted Signs

When you have a business, one of the most important things that will draw customers to your business is your electric sign. Unfortunately, there are problems that you will find based on the type of electric sign that you have. Below we look at the three types of electric signs and the common problems that business owners run into.

Fluorescent Light Problems

Fluorescent signs are one of the most popular types of electric signs and they have been around for a long time. Below are some of the most common problems that business owners have with fluorescent signs.

Improper Spacing of Lamps

Until the most recent advances that have been made in LEDs, most of the cabinet signs were lit using fluorescent lighting. It’s important to find a contractor who understands the design of sign lighting so that you avoid visual issues in the future. You want to ensure that your sign is just the right temperature. When you place the lamps too close to one another or too close to the sign’s face, it will cause hot spots and make your sign lighting uneven.

On the other hand, you don’t want to put your lamps over 12” apart from your surface. This will create cool spots meaning that your sign’s hard to read or uneven. Lamps should be a minimum of four inches from the face of the sign. That’s the reason that faces of flat signs require deeper cabinets when compared with signs that have faces that are pan-formed. If the sign that you have was designed poorly, retrofitting your lamp configuration or faces can fix the issue.

Lighting Outages

One of the biggest problems is that your sign simply isn’t lighting up. This could include things like:

  • Sign doesn’t light fully
  • Sign flickers
  • Sign is completely out
  • Photo cell or timer issues

Sometimes fluorescent lamps burn out. The average lifespan of a fluorescent lamp is 12,000 hours or approximately 2.75 years used during the night when you are using T-12 HO kind of lamps that are usually used in exterior signs. Lamp ballasts and sockets, and eventually wiring, also will wear out as time passes so remember you’ll have to do regular maintenance. A project manager from a sign contractor can help you with figuring out your sign’s maintenance yearly budget.

Neon Sign Problems

Lighting systems with neon signs came out in the 1920s and they’ve been trumped by the LED systems that are more energy-efficient and reliable. Neon’s high voltage and because of safety concerns, the only ones who can work on them are professional electricians or sign technicians. Here are some of the common problems with neon signs.

  • Sign flickers when it’s turned on and then goes out. This could mean the neon is burned out or broken.
  • One of the neon section’s end is fine but the other’s dim or out. This could mean that you have to repump the gas or the neon tube needs replacing.

Both incandescent and neon lighting are great to retrofit to LED, however, neon’s the best for fast operation and saving on repair costs.

LED Lighting Problems

LED lighting offers an average of 100K hours which equals more than 11 hours of 24 hours a day usage. This means that it’s gives business owners the very longest life when it comes to lighted signs. It’s rare that one or a LED string will go out.

However, sometimes the power supply fails. When you compare the operating and maintenance costs of the other options, LED is the one that is going to save the most amount of money. It will also save you a lot of headaches.

When you are looking at sign options, you may want to look for the least expensive options for LED. But the top systems are the best options to help make sure that your sign is lasting a long time. Even though they may be less expensive at first, the off brands can create results that are less than stellar.

Remember that when you have a business, one of the ways that people are going to know your business is there is your lighted sign. So make sure that you choose the one that is best for your business so that your customers can find you easily and that your business looks professional.

Questions about Lighted Signs?

Spectrum Signworks is proud to have installed lighted signs in some of the finest businesses in Naples, Florida. If you’re interested in working with our world-class designers on Lighted Signs for your business, give us a call at 239-908-0505!