Help bidding a warehouse lighting repair job

Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
So I got a call from a warehouse that just renewed a 3 year lease and they want to replace all the T12 96" fluorescent lamps in the warehouse.

I did a count and there are approximately 154 lamps. About 90% of the fixtures are single lamp fixtures. There's about 60 light fixtures that are completely off or the lamp is a purple white blended color so I'm going to assume a lot of those need ballast replacement.

There is a complete row of 8 lights that are off and the warehouse manager said as far as he knows everything is turned on as far as switches and circuit breakers.

I'm going to need to rent a scissor loft for this job. I was thinking of doing a week rental to give myself some breathing room. A week rental is about $700 with the delivery fees.

How should I go about pricing this job? Double the price of lamps and ballasts being replaced? Figure 16 hours at a rate of $150 an hour? The warehouse is full of stuff because it's a logistics company so I'll be waiting for people to move stuff to get access to lights.


The job is located in Hayward CA
 
This is mostly just re-lamping and ballast replacement?
Assume a few hours for circuit tracing.
Unless they dedicate a forklift to you, assume you'll spend a couple of hours waiting for a clear path.
Are you going to replace all the ballasts on the way or just when a new tube doesn't light?
Who deals with disposing of the used lamps and ballasts? That's a cost.
Are you trying to do this in two days or spread over 3-4?
Are there local work rules that you'll run into?

154/16 = average of 6 minutes per fixture

Think you could talk them into doing LED replacements instead? Bypass the ballast (leave in place), pop in a new LED tube, move on. Shouldn't cost that much more in materials, they'll save that back in electricity, and PG&E might have a rebate program to cover part of the cost.
 

James L

Senior Member
Location
Kansas Cty, Mo, USA
Occupation
Electrician
So I got a call from a warehouse that just renewed a 3 year lease and they want to replace all the T12 96" fluorescent lamps in the warehouse.

I did a count and there are approximately 154 lamps. About 90% of the fixtures are single lamp fixtures. There's about 60 light fixtures that are completely off or the lamp is a purple white blended color so I'm going to assume a lot of those need ballast replacement.

There is a complete row of 8 lights that are off and the warehouse manager said as far as he knows everything is turned on as far as switches and circuit breakers.

I'm going to need to rent a scissor loft for this job. I was thinking of doing a week rental to give myself some breathing room. A week rental is about $700 with the delivery fees.

How should I go about pricing this job? Double the price of lamps and ballasts being replaced? Figure 16 hours at a rate of $150 an hour? The warehouse is full of stuff because it's a logistics company so I'll be waiting for people to move stuff to get access to lights.


The job is located in Hayward CA
I wouldn't give a firm price because you might be troubleshooting. Basically 40% of the lights don't work

You can give a price to swap lamps
You can give a price to rebuild fixtures

With all the carrying supplies, getting the lift rented, and other logistics, I would add at least 30% more time than the swapping out.

I would think 10 minutes for lamp only, and 30 minutes for lamp + ballast.

Then any troubleshooting would be extra.

And how much waiting time? Add for that, too
 

Eddie702

Licensed Electrician
Location
Western Massachusetts
Occupation
Electrician
I can see a lot of waiting time. That's a job killer.

They say they will work with you. But will they??? Maybe but it will be on their schedule not yours.

I wouldn't give them a firm price.

Anything you can't control always comes back to bite you hard
 

farmantenna

Member
Location
mass
I wouldn't even consider giving them a price to replace T12 fluorescent lamps. Is that even legal in California? could you be arrested?
I would give them a price for bypassed LED lamps and that would be minimum of 15mins per fixture plus 1 hr per day wasted time and add time if some non working fixtures look really bad.

Fluorescent lamps should not even be discussed. the energy savings with LED would be substantial. We replaced dozens of 8' T 12 fixtures and at least 6-8 277 circuits with two circuits of 16 210W high bays
 

Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
I wouldn't even consider giving them a price to replace T12 fluorescent lamps. Is that even legal in California? could you be arrested?
I would give them a price for bypassed LED lamps and that would be minimum of 15mins per fixture plus 1 hr per day wasted time and add time if some non working fixtures look really bad.

Fluorescent lamps should not even be discussed. the energy savings with LED would be substantial. We replaced dozens of 8' T 12 fixtures and at least 6-8 277 circuits with two circuits of 16 210W high bays
Seeing as every supply house and every big box store sells fluorescent lamps I doubt I'll be arrested 😅

My only concern with the LED bypass is it's more expensive and they're renting the warehouse albeit they are a mult million dollar company. I'll give them a quote for the bypass and fixing what's existing.

I'll crunch the power saving numbers too and provide then with that info

Thank you for everything comments!
 

brantmacga

Señor Member
Location
Georgia
Occupation
Electrical Monke
My only concern with the LED bypass is it's more expensive and they're renting the warehouse albeit they are a mult million dollar company. I'll give them a quote for the bypass and fixing what's existing.
I wouldn’t consider that to be your problem.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
So I got a quote of $4200 for (160) Satco S9919 43W T8 LED single pin base 5000k lamps

What would a fair markup be on these lights?

Also my vendor wrote in the quote that they are a special order item and are non returnable. Am I allowed to require a $4200 deposit in this scenario to cover myself?
 

James L

Senior Member
Location
Kansas Cty, Mo, USA
Occupation
Electrician
So it's about $26.25 per lamp
Is that your total price, out the door?

I'd have no problem marking that up 25%
That makes them about $31.50 each after

You have to be able to assume the warranty for a short duration, 1 or 2 years. That's worth something.

Also, make the deposit for the total materials price that you're charging, not only your cost. That way they don't clue in on your markup
 

Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
So it's about $26.25 per lamp
Is that your total price, out the door?

I'd have no problem marking that up 25%
That makes them about $31.50 each after

You have to be able to assume the warranty for a short duration, 1 or 2 years. That's worth something.

Also, make the deposit for the total materials price that you're charging, not only your cost. That way they don't clue in on your markup
$4,205.62 is the out the door price for the lamps so the lamps are $26.29 a piece out the door

With a 25% mark up I should charge them $5,257
 

James L

Senior Member
Location
Kansas Cty, Mo, USA
Occupation
Electrician
$4,205.62 is the out the door price for the lamps so the lamps are $26.29 a piece out the door

With a 25% mark up I should charge them $5,257
I would.
And I would probably order an extra 6 or 8 tubes.
And I would be enough to account for anyting defective or if you get something with funny CCT

Make sure you get through the job seamlessly.
 

Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
I would.
And I would probably order an extra 6 or 8 tubes.
And I would be enough to account for anyting defective or if you get something with funny CCT

Make sure you get through the job seamlessly.
160 would leave me with 6 extra lamps

Thanks for the input. I'm going to send this bid out in a little bit. Is it bad practice to send a bid at almost 11pm?
 

Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
The $800 is a weeks lift rental with a little mark up. The last time I rented a 19ft scissor lift about 2 months ago it was about $650 for the week.

The $5,257 is the lamps with a mark up

The $200 is for wire nuts and other miscellaneous parts that may be needed

I'm thinking a price somewhere around my 25 to 30 minute breakdown is what I should go with

What do y'all think?

9,625+5,257+800+200 = $15,882 which is 30 minutes per fixture at $125 per hour
-----
6,416.66+5,257+800+200 = $12,673 which is 20 minutes per fixture at $125 per hour
-----
8,020.83+5,257+800+200 = $14,277 which is 25 minutes per fixture at $125 per hour
 

James L

Senior Member
Location
Kansas Cty, Mo, USA
Occupation
Electrician
Good job crunching numbers. If you feel torn on which price, sleep on it.

I don't like sending bids late or on weekends, but everybody knows that everybody is working late on them sometimes. I think there's no real harm.

That lift price - wow.😮😮😮

I get a 19' lift for $260 a week, and $580 for a whole month
 

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Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
Good job crunching numbers. If you feel torn on which price, sleep on it.

I don't like sending bids late or on weekends, but everybody knows that everybody is working late on them sometimes. I think there's no real harm.

That lift price - wow.😮😮😮

I get a 19' lift for $260 a week, and $580 for a whole month
I decided to wait until the morning to send it out

$650 includes the $240 round trip delivery fee but yes since I'm a new to renting equipment I don't get very good rates
 

brantmacga

Señor Member
Location
Georgia
Occupation
Electrical Monke
One thing I would recommend when doing a job like this, is to invest in a lux meter. They’re not terribly expensive for a basic model.


I converted some T5’s to Satco LED’s last year for a customer, and he complained about them not being brighter than the fluorescent.

Took before and after measurements; fluorescent averaged 18 foot candles, LED was 35 foot candles. I did just two bays to start with and it was visibly obvious how much brighter those bays were. Customer declined to do the rest of the shop saying he couldn’t see the difference.

It’s worth being able to backup your claims that the investment is worth it. I use the meter as a sales tool also for selecting and selling lamp upgrades. I get a baseline, tell them what the ideal illumination would be and give them pricing for various higher light levels.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

480sparky

Senior Member
Location
Iowegia
Not only measure the difference in the brightness of the lights, you should document the consistency of the new lights (as fluorescents age, their color changes). Other metrics that should be recorded are the amp draw reduction in the lighting panels, as well as the temperature drop.

Before and After.jpg

This is a factory I swapped out for LEDs. You can see the difference in both the brightness as well as the consistency of the new LEDs. The old mercury-vapors had colors all over the place.

The amperage used by the new lights dropped by 80.9 amps, and the temperature in the lighting panels dropped 21°F!

Important note: Unless you're truly familiar with shooting bracketed RAW photographs in full manual mode and editing them to the same white balance, it's hard to truly document a side-by-side image like this. These are not just cell phone photos.
 

Shak180

Member
Location
94545
Occupation
Electrician
One thing I would recommend when doing a job like this, is to invest in a lux meter. They’re not terribly expensive for a basic model.


I converted some T5’s to Satco LED’s last year for a customer, and he complained about them not being brighter than the fluorescent.

Took before and after measurements; fluorescent averaged 18 foot candles, LED was 35 foot candles. I did just two bays to start with and it was visibly obvious how much brighter those bays were. Customer declined to do the rest of the shop saying he couldn’t see the difference.

It’s worth being able to backup your claims that the investment is worth it. I use the meter as a sales tool also for selecting and selling lamp upgrades. I get a baseline, tell them what the ideal illumination would be and give them pricing for various higher light levels.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Thanks for the advice on picking up a lux meter. I'm trying to get over my habit of making do with the tools I have instead of going out and buying the right tool for the job.

I can also see how the lux meter could set me apart from others during the consultation process and maybe the customer will put some weight in that when making their choice.
 
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