Do you know the restrictions relating to the amount of Artificial Lighting and Power permitted?

What are the restrictions relating to Artificial Lighting and Power for Buildings?

It’s important to know the regulations of the Commercial Building(s) you’re managing. Non-Residential incorporates Classes 3 and 5 through to 9 and for the Common Areas of Class 2 Buildings. Section J of the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) outlines the National Construction Code (NCC) requirements for Artificial Lighting & Power and Building Classes. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Section J, it assesses the compliance of the energy efficiency measures in the Artificial Lighting and Power Design and must be adhered to in all buildings.

The Lighting Calculator for Property Managers…

As a Property Manager, you can be faced with the difficult task of making sure each building complies with strict regulations. Prolux Electrical Contractors can assist in identifying lighting and power requirements and can provide you with valuable solutions. Furthermore, the Lighting Calculator has been designed by the ABCB to assist in developing a better understanding of lighting energy efficiency parameters. To put in simply, it helps you to identify the wattage per square metre for each room, to work out the Illumination Power Density for areas outlined, while taking into consideration all variable factors. Illumination Power Density is the total power that would be consumed by lights in any given space, this includes lamps, ballasts (device to limit the amount of current in an electric circuit), current regulators and control devices (lighting timer, motion detectors or dimming devices) other than those that are plugged directly into a socket outlet for intermittent use, such as floor standing lamps, desk lamps or work station lamps, divided by the floor area of the space. Multiple Lighting Systems refers to the Illumination Power Load when multiple lighting systems serve the same space.

Download the NCC Lighting Calculator

Just a few properties Prolux Electrical Contractors have serviced, in and around Melbourne’s CBD…

441StKildaRdMelbourne 50QueenStMelbourne CollinsStMelbourne






Building Classes:

Class 1a – Detached, Terrace, Townhouse or Villa
Class 1b – Guesthouse
Class 2 – Two or more Sole Occupancy Units
Class 3 – Accommodation or Residence in Public Building
Class 4 – Only Dwelling in Class 5,6,7,8 or 9 Building
Class 5 – Office Building
Class 6 – Shop Building
Class 7a – Car Park
Class 7b – Warehouse – Storage or Display
Class 8 – Laboratory or Building used for production
Class 9a – Health Care Building
Class 9b – Public Assembly Building
Class 9c – Aged Care Building
Class 10a – Sheds and Garages
Class 10b – Non-Habitable Structure

How many Watts per Square Metre can Building Owners and Tenants use under ABCB guidelines?

–  For lighting indoors – 5 watts per square metre
–  For lighting in outdoor areas, including pergolas – 4 watts per square metre
–  For lighting in garages or sheds – 3 watts per square metre

These percentages relate to maximum usages. Exceptions to this rule only exist when certain lighting controls are used, and this may vary depending on specific structures and set-ups. An LED globe, for example, may use a tenth of the power that a halogen globe uses to create an equivalent amount and style of light. Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs) also offer significant energy savings. Lighting variables can alter these figures; dimmers and motion detectors and lighting regulations don’t account for lamps and other non-permanent lighting fittings either, provided that they’re not directly wired in. Body Corporate Managers must ensure there is adequate public lighting to illuminate all hallways and common areas, or risk liability. In regards to light fittings, if they are recessed in the ceiling, it is the Owners Corporation’s responsibility. If it hangs into the lot, it’s the owner’s responsibility.

What does all this mean for Property Managers?

The table below identifies the Wattage per Square Metre for Non-Residential Buildings.

Wattage per Sq/M                           Power Density for Specific Area
9 watts                                                Office – artificially lit to 200lx or more
7 watts                                                Office – artificially lit to less than 200lx
5 watts                                                Service Area (Change Room, Staff Room)
6 watts                                                Public Toilets
12 watts                                              Laboratories – artificially lit to 400lx or more
13 watts                                              Health Care (Care areas and Corridors)
7 to 10 watts                                       Health Care (Children’s Ward and Examination Room)
17 watts                                              Factories/Industrial
9 watts                                                Switchboard Room
10 watts                                              Conference/Board Room
10 watts                                              Auditorium/Church/Public Hall
8 watts                                                Common Rooms/Corridors in Class 2 Building
15 watts                                              Entry Lobby from outside Building
22 watts                                              Retail/Shop
5 watts                                                Plant Room
8 to 10 watts                                       Storage Room
10 watts                                              Wholesale Storage and Display Area
6 watts                                                Car Park
25 watts                                              Car Park Entrance – first 20 metres
10 watts                                              Lounge Area for Communal use in Class 3 Building
5 watts                                                Sole Occupancy of Class 3 Building

“Lighting contributes up to 38% of a building’s energy use. It is one of the easiest areas to save energy for owners.
 Australian standards specify minimum luminance levels for different commercial tasks. Work areas require twice the luminance of foyer areas, which in turn are twice those of toilets, passage ways or stairs.”

Need help confirming you’re complying with the ABCB’s Section J?

How do I calculate Watts per Square Metre?

  • Measure each room’s width and length in metres.
  • Multiply the numbers by 3.280839895. For example, a room at 10.2 by 6.4 metres converts to 702.82 feet (10.2 x 3.280839895 = 33.46) (6.4 x 3.280839895 = 20.99).
  • Multiply the length of the room by width to calculate the area in square feet. In our example, the area of the room is 33.46 x 20.99 or 702.32 square feet.
  • Obtain the energy consumption (in watts) in each room. For example, the lighting in this room comes from 30, 75-watt and eight, 100-watt lamps. This equates to 30 x 75 + 8 x 100 = 3,050 watts.
  • Divide the wattage consumed in the room by its area in square feet to calculate the watts per square foot. In our example, 3,050 watts divided by 702.32 square feet equals to 4.34 watts per square feet.

How do I convert Lux to Watts per Square Metre?

One hundred Lux is equal to one Watt per Square Metre. Therefore, when converting Lux to Watts per Square Metre, all that is required is to multiply the number of Watts in question by 100.

For more information, or a detailed analysis on your building’s energy efficiency call Prolux Electrical Contractors today.

Call Prolux Electrical Contractors on 1800 800 880
The Melbourne electrician for all your electrical requirements.

3/52 Corporate Boulevard, Bayswater VIC 3153

Home Automation and Access Control for the modern office

Dynalite1 Home-Automation1 PUSH-Control1


State of the art access control – easy, automatic.

Home Automation explained…

Home Automation is the integration of electrical devices working with each other. Things such as turning on lights anywhere throughout an entire building, opening blinds, pre-setting climate control or linking speakers to play music in office spaces can all be equated for, with a simple press of a button.

Devices can be connected through a computer or hand held device (smart phone or tablet) to allow for full control of lighting, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, appliances, security locks of gates and doors or other systems, to provide improved convenience, comfort, energy efficiency and security.

What is Biometrics?
Biometrics is the term used for measuring and analysing biological data; physical characteristics i.e. fingerprints, the eye’s iris, facial structure or voice.  It can be used for identification purposes and security to allow access to protected areas.

How does Biometrics work?
Firstly, it receives data through an appropriate scanner, encrypts the data and then analyses it.

How much does Home Automation Cost?

Prices start from as little as a few hundred dollars for something along the lines of a CBUS wireless light switch for your office. If you’re after something even more high tech, a Biometric Iris Scanner could cost you in excess of a few thousand dollars. If you’re looking to have your entire building fitted-out, then you’ll need to go through what a control system can do for you.

“Almost any appliance can be monitored and controlled automatically or remotely!”


Home Automation Control Systems:

    • PUSH
    • CBUS
    • StarServe
    • Dynalite 

Home Automation Solutions:

  • Access Control
  • Automate Lights
  • Install Intercoms
  • Internet Devices and Media
  • Install Security Cameras and Alarms
  • Climate Control – Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning
  • Automatic Control – Automatic Blinds, Automatic Curtains or Roller Shutters managing brightness, glare, temperature control and privacy
  • Audio Visual Installation – Theatre, TV, Media Centre, Foxtel, Blu Ray/DVD
  • Automate Doors or Entrance Ways
  • Automate Water Flow, Lighting and Temperature Control – Bath, Pool, Spa and Pond
  • Automate Tank Water and Irrigation
  • Keyless Entry Door Locks
  • Domotics – Systems talking to each other  for improved efficiency, safety and convenience


The Ultimate in Convenience and Luxury…
Through the ingenious network that is ‘automation’, it’s easy to enjoy the ultimate in luxury. A tailored ‘smart office’ can fulfil your every request; putting you in charge of managing multiple devices simultaneously and effortlessly. From the moment you walk through your foyer, the pleasure of home automation will become evident.


Call the Melbourne electrician, Prolux Electrical Contractors today on 1800 800 880.
Prolux installs home automation systems, provide audio visual and theatre installation and more for businesses in Melbourne and Brisbane.

What are the best spa and swimming pool lights to install?

How much do pool lights cost?

Depending on the type of lighting you choose and the amount of lights you require will affect the overall cost of your pool lighting. If you are simply replacing a few globes and you’re still able to use your existing transformers, then it could just be a case of a few hundred dollars. However, if you’re designing a new pool lighting layout then you’ll have to think about a number of factors: 12 or 32 volts? Coloured or standard lens? Halogen lights or LED? Many halogen lights are no longer being produced and they’re being replaced with a much better LED counterpart. You may not be able to get an exact replacement if you have an older model halogen light and you may therefore need to choose a new light altogether.
The two main types of lighting styles used for Concrete, Vinyl and Fibre Glass pools are Surface Mounted – lights installed on the side of the pool’s wall, which are Flush or Niche Mounted – lights installed inside the pool’s wall with only the face plate of the light exposed.”

Halogen versus LED Lights…

In the world that is underwater lighting, the question that’s continually floating to the surface is… Should I install Halogen or LED lights? Halogen Lighting has been around for many years, their easy operation and high lumen’s output has provided a reliable source of lighting. LED lights are still relatively new, they provide a high output and are a highly efficient source of lighting. Halogen lighting is a simple process; it operates by using electricity to heat a tungsten filament to a few hundred degrees within a sealed glass compartment, this compartment is filled with halogen gas, which when operated at the right temperature or voltage collects the vaporised tungsten and redeposits it back onto the filament. In ideal conditions, this process can continue to operate for up to 1200 hours, after which the globe will need to be replaced. In a pool or spa environment this is generally around 2 years. The light produced by a halogen light is often described as soft lighting, this is because the colour of a halogen light is very warm (2800k – 3000k) and when it passes through a coloured lens its brightness is filtered and in turn reduced. The end result is a subtle, pale colour and subdued brightness. LEDs on the other hand are some of the brightest lights on the market, with low voltage applications and a luminous efficacy (rating for efficiency of a globe; calculated as lumens per watt of 80lm/w) they are a far more efficient choice of lighting than that of traditional halogen lights;  a luminous efficacy of 20lm/w. The high brightness of the LED combined with their specific wavelengths illuminates the pool in a vibrant opalescent effect which can completely transform the look of a pool or spa at night.
LED Pool Light

“Add a shimmer of light to a warm summer’s night.”

Pool lights not working?

Damaged or broken pool light? You may be able to replace an old Stroud pool light with a new LED Retro pool light, as this light has been designed to do just that. It will use your existing transformer and will automatically adjust to suit the voltage of the previous light, whether it’s 12 or 32 volts. A qualified electrician will need to fully inspect not only the lights, but the wiring and components in order to identify the problem(s) and complete the works.

Remote control lights?
The RM-2 Remote Control Unit can give you the capacity to turn your pool or spa lights on and off at your convenience from a hand held device. Operating from up to 200 metres on a long life lithium battery it does not require line of sight, as it operates through walls.


Want to refresh the appearance of your pool?
Upgrading your pool or spa lighting is the cheapest, easiest and most effective way to refresh the appearance of your pool or spa, but also has the potential to reduce your energy consumption by up to 90%. Swimmers and observers will have greater visibility, thus  improving safety. Why not install the tri-colour lights which allow you to change the colours at your leisure. You can even purchase clip-on coloured lenses for an easy do-it-yourself pool lighting feature for a special event or change of scenery.

Pool Lighting 7

“There’s nothing more enjoyable than entertaining friends and family around the pool on a warm summer’s evening. In addition to adding an amazing ambience, a well illuminated pool will provide hours of entertainment!

Want lighting to compliment your swimming pool?
We all know that lighting creates ambiance and can intensify the mood of any given area. Lighting within a pool can create a spectacular vision with the glow glistening off the water. It’s not just about the lights within the pool that creates the ‘look’, it’s the area surrounding the pool that can create a ‘dynamic look…’


Prolux Electrical Contractors provide and install all types of lighting. We can advise you on which lights will work best for the areas you’re wanting to enhance, whilst being good to our environment.

Call us today on 1800 800 880 to have your pool looking AMAZING this summer.