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LED Lighting Supply / LED Outdoor Lights / LED Shoebox Lights

LED Shoebox Lights

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What are LED Shoebox Lights?

LED Shoebox Lights are outdoor lighting pole-mounted fixtures. They are also referred to as LED Parking Lot Lights and LED Area Lights. They’re designed to provide bright light for parking lots and other large outdoor spaces. They focus all their light downwards. They’re equipped with optics to distribute the light away from the pole.

You can equip some shoebox lights with a photocell for true dusk-to-dawn operations. You can also add a motion sensor. This allows the fixture to dim when no movement is detected, which can be a great cost-saving addition.

The Differences Between LED Shoebox Lighting and LED Flood Lights

The main difference is the design of shoebox lighting. They are mounted at the top of a pole and all their light is directed downwards, using optics to distribute the light. Flood lights are also mounted high on poles or buildings. But their light’s angled to specific locations in a parking lot or other outdoor areas.

Floodlights usually have wide or narrow beam patterns. An LED Shoebox light has street light optics (Types 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5). The most common are Type 3 and Type 5.

LED Shoebox

400 Watt LED Flood Light

LED Shoebox Light

LED Flood Light


Commercial Uses for Shoebox LEDs

You’ll find LED Shoebox outdoor lights used in parking lots. They’re mounted on poles from 15 to 40 feet high. It’s typical to see 1, 2, and 4 shoebox lights mounted on a single pole in a parking lot.

They also make great pole-mounted sports lighting fixtures as well as billboard lights. We commonly use them in outdoor spaces like tennis court lighting and pickleball courts.

The Best Applications of Shoebox Lights

The best and most common applications we commonly see of shoebox lights are:

Best Practices – Your Plan to Replace Old Shoebox Lights

Should you replace all at the same time or just a few?

  • Are your fixtures in good condition and waterproof? You may want to consider retrofitting them as an option. (this is a good choice for an expensive fixtures you want to keep)
  • If the fixtures are old, then replacing them is the best option. LED shoebox fixtures are much smaller than their metal-halide counterparts. They are less ‘boxy’. They are bronze in color (other color options are available). So they should blend in with existing poles.
  • The main reason to replace existing lights with LEDs is cost savings. So if some of the lights are old and failing, it may make sense to replace them all at the same time. ROI’s are short with LED. So you can expect to recover the expense of replacing the lights with the lower lighting bills.

300 Watt Shoebox in Parking Lot

LED Shoebox Retrofit Kits

We also have LED Shoebox Retrofit Kits if you want to use your existing fixtures. We offer versions rated to replace 400 Watt 16-inch fixtures and 1000 Watt 23-inch fixtures.

Best Selling LED Shoebox Light Fixtures

We offer a line of LED SBHO2 fixtures that our customers love. These are available in 100 Watts, 150 Watts, 200 Watts, 210 Watts, 240 Watt 100-277V, 240 Watt 277-480V, and 300 Watts.

Motion Sensors and Photocells for LED Shoebox Fixtures

The two main control options are photocells and motion sensors. Many sites have pre-installed timers. You can continue to use these with new LED shoebox lighting.

Photocells turn the light on at dusk and off at dawn. Many sites have timers already installed that control all the fixtures. You must have a 3-pin Nema socket if you want to use a photocell. We have fixtures that come reinstalled with the Photocell.

Motion sensors detect motion. They will turn the light to full power when motion’s detected or dim / turn off when no motion’s detected. To dim, the fixture needs to have a dimmable driver. A motion sensor also provides dusk and off-at-dawn control. A photocell is not needed when using a motion sensor.

We offer photocells on many of our shoebox fixtures. Photocells will turn the lights on at dusk and off at dawn.

Installing LED Shoebox Lights

There is no difference between installing led shoebox lighting and older traditional HID shoebox lights.

A qualified electrician who has access to a boom truck or lift will do the install. They go through the process of removing and replacing the lights. Because of the heights involved, it is best to use a qualified electrician for this process.

Parking Lot Foot Candles

Benefits of LED Shoebox Lights

LED shoebox lights are the replacement of choice for metal halide. You should see an instant deduction in your lighting bill between 50 – 80% over metal-halide.

The light source is of a higher quality than most metal-halide fixtures. Our shoebox lights benefit from higher lumen output which is directly related to using less energy to create more light.

Plus, their lifespan is much longer. So maintenance costs should go down once you convert to using LEDs.

Difference Between Shoebox Lights and LED Parking Lot Lighting

The difference is subtle. You would install LED Shoebox lights in a parking lot. But you can also install them on Sports Courts, Tennis Courts, or outdoor areas that need light.

Parking lots’ primary source of light is a shoebox light, but not exclusively so. There are times when LED flood lights are a good option to light up a parking lot, or LED Wall packs mounted on exterior walls of buildings adjacent to the parking lot.

How Many LED Shoebox Lights Do You Need?

In most cases when you replace Metal Halide and High Pressure Sodium shoebox fixtures it is a 1-for-1 replacement.

You usually replace a 400 Watt Metal-Halide with a 150 Watt LED and a 1000 Watt Metal Halide with a 300 Watt LED Fixture.

We also offer LED options to replace 250 Watt Metal Halide Shoebox fixtures. If you want more light or it’s a new site, then request a lighting design plan to select the proper fixture option.

How to Update HID Shoebox Fixtures to LED

Our commercial-grade shoebox lights are all designed to replace 150 Watt to 1500 Watt HID shoebox lights – one for one. The process consists of removing and replacing the lights.

Or, in case you have a fixture you want to keep, you can retrofit it with one of our retrofit kits. They’re designed to replace the lighting components of 250 Watt to 1000 Watt metal-halide.

Difference Between an LED Street Light and an LED Shoebox

Both lights are similar in many ways. They are both pole-mounted fixtures with optics designed to light up areas below. LED Street Lights are smaller in size and resemble a “Cobra Head” in shape. LED Shoebox Lights are more square or rectangular, and larger. Both offer similar optic packages, like Type 1 to Type 5.

For the most part, it’s more a function of familiarity. People use LED Street Lights for roadways and LED Shoebox Lights for parking lots.

Light Patterns Available with LED Shoebox Lights

Shoebox LED parking lot lights are available with standardized “Type” Light patterns, Types 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.

The two most common are Types 3 and 5. Type 3 is the best option when installed on the boundaries of a parking lot. It is a forward-throw light pattern that throws the light forward and left and right.

Type 5 is a great choice for the center of the parking lot.

light distributon

How Many LED Lumens To Replace Metal Halide Shoebox Lights?

  • To replace 400 Watt Metal Halide (MH), consider fixtures between 15,000 and 25,000 (LED) lumens.
  • To replace 1000 Watt Metal Halide, look for LED fixtures producing 40,000 to 55,000 (LED) lumens.

The real answer lies in performing a shoebox lighting plan for your parking lot. We provide those for free.

The following outlines the lumens you will need to replace your old shoebox. The actual amount will depend on the mounting height and the amount of light you need.

  • 250 Watt Metal Halide 9,000 – 12,000 LED lumens
  • 400 Watt Metal Halide 15,000 – 25,000 LED lumens
  • 1000 Watt Metal Halide 39,000 – 50,000 LED lumens

To make it easy for you we offer:

Lighting Plans and LED Shoebox Parking Lot Lights

We offer free lighting plans for our commercial and industrial customers. We will only do these using our LED shoebox lighting fixtures in the plan.

Supply us with a site plan, or give us the Google map coordinates. We can model your space inside our software and provide you with a shoebox lighting layout for your area.

Do You Sell Light Poles for Shoebox Lights?

We do. Check out our light poles for shoebox fixtures. We offer both steel and aluminum options for parking lots that can hold between 1 and 4 fixtures per pole. (depending on the pole type and EPA rating for your area). We can ship our poles to most locations in the lower 48 states.

Common Shoebox Mounting Options

The main mounting options are:

  • Slip fitter
  • Trunnion or Yoke
  • Straight arm mount (pole mount ) for round or square poles or walls

Choose The Right Led Parking Lot Lights

Retrofit Kits For Parking Lot Lights