How to Choose Lighting for Your Gas Station or Convenience Store

Lighting plays a significant role in enhancing visibility, promoting security, and even influencing purchasing decisions. This is especially true of locations people will be visiting after dusk and in the early morning hours, as is often the case with gas stations and convenience stores. Selecting the right lighting for your operation, then, is a key component of creating a safe, inviting, and efficient environment for both customers and employees.

Choosing the right lighting can also give you a competitive edge by returning savings in the form of smaller energy bills and reduced maintenance costs.

This article will guide you through the essential factors to consider when choosing the best LED lighting solution for your gas station or C-store, ensuring that your establishment is well-illuminated, cost-effective, and customer friendly.

Defining the Areas to Be Lit

A gas station or C-store store typically has several distinct areas with different lighting requirements to ensure safety, functionality, and ambiance. Here are key areas where you may be looking to upgrade or renovate your lighting:

  1. Canopy: The canopy, of course, covers the fuel dispensers, keeping both the machines and your customers dry. It is one of the most important areas to illuminate. Proper lighting here enhances visibility, ensures safety for customers while refueling, and creates a sense of security during nighttime hours. Ensure you have lighting focused on the fuel dispensers to make it easy for customers to read the pump displays and operate the equipment safely.

    [Shop Gas Station Canopy Light Fixtures]

  2. Parking lot: Adequate lighting in the parking lot improves safety and security for customers and employees by discouraging criminal activities and reducing the risk of accidents. This is especially the case for areas at the sides and back of your building. Good lighting is the first-line deterrent to crime.

    [Shop LED Parking Lot Luminaires]

  3. Storefront and entrance: The storefront and entrance should be well lit to create a welcoming atmosphere and encourage customers to enter the store. This area's lighting should also highlight signage and branding elements.

  4. Interior: The convenience store's interior requires layered lighting to cover general, task, and accent lighting needs. General lighting provides overall illumination, while task lighting focuses on specific areas such as checkout counters and product shelves. Accent lighting can be used to highlight promotional displays and create ambiance.

    [Shop LED ceiling lights]

  5. Cooler and freezer cases: Proper lighting in cooler and freezer cases is essential for product visibility and merchandising, making it easy for customers to find and select items. This is an area where LED lighting shines in particular: its long lifespan ensures a good customer experience without brownouts, and its lifespan is unaffected by cold temperatures. Because it runs cool, it can also help reduce the energy consumption of your refrigerated cases.  

    [Shop LED lights for cooler and freezer cases]

  6. Restrooms: Clean, well-lit restrooms contribute to a positive customer experience and demonstrate a commitment to hygiene and safety. LED lighting performs well here because its lifespan is unaffected by cycling (frequently being turned on and off). Motion sensors on these lights will conserve even more energy.  

  7. Back-of-house areas: Storage rooms, employee break rooms, and offices should have appropriate lighting to ensure a safe and functional working environment. Keep your breakage and workers' comp payments down with bright, low-cost-to-operate lighting that helps to prevent accidents.

    [Shop rebate-eligible LED replacements for fluorescent lights]

  8. Outdoor signage: Illuminating signage, such as price signs, store logos, and promotional banners, is essential for attracting customers and enhancing visibility from a distance.

    [Shop LED tubes for lighted signs]

  9. Emergency and safety lighting: Adequate emergency and safety lighting should be installed to ensure safe evacuation in case of power outages or other emergencies. You can install dedicated emergency lighting or install emergency backup drivers in LED lighting to have it double as emergency lighting.

    [Shop emergency and exit lights]

What to Consider When Making Buying Decisions

Here are the factors to consider to ensure you get the best lighting solutions for your needs:

  1. Brightness: Bright and even illumination is crucial in a gas station, as it helps to improve visibility, create a welcoming atmosphere, and prevent accidents.

  2. Energy Efficiency: Lighting efficiency directly impacts the long-term cost of operating your lighting system. LED lights are the most energy-efficient option for commercial lighting and can significantly lower energy bills compared to traditional lighting systems.

    [Shop our highest efficiency LED lights]

  3. Durability: Gas stations are often subject to harsh weather conditions, so any outdoor or canopy lights need to be durable and long-lasting. Durability and longevity also reduce maintenance requirements and help to lower long-term costs. For outdoor fixtures, choose models that are protected from moisture and dust, and that are made from materials that won't shatter or create dangerous debris in case of an accident.

  4. Color Rendering: Color rendering affects the way colors appear under different lighting conditions. For interior and cooler case lighting, look for LED lights with color rendering indexes (CRI) of 80 or higher. These will provide more accurate color representation, ensuring your products look attractive while also making it easier for customers to identify items and read labels.

  5. Mounting Options: Fixtures will need to be securely mounted to ensure safety and stability. Choose fixtures that are easy to install and that can be securely mounted to the canopy, building, or light poles.

When choosing lighting for your gas station or C-store, think about what you need with regards to brightness, energy efficiency, durability, color rendering, and your mounting options. When you select the right lighting solution, you create a welcoming atmosphere for customers and employees alike. Business and productivity both go up, while your energy bills stay low.

For help with lighting layouts for your business's interior or exterior, assistance with lighting controls, or answers to your lighting questions, call 215.355.7200, text 267.266.8330, email or complete the form below: