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U-Haul Corporate Headquarters

 Phoenix, Arizona  Outdoor lighting

Cree® LED lighting helps U-Haul reach sustainable energy reduction goals with tremendous energy savings.


At the U-Haul corporate headquarters parking structure in Phoenix, Arizona, the existing lighting was inconsistent and not aesthetically pleasing. The lighting tended to yellow and could cast shadows that created a murky effect throughout the structure. The less than ideal lighting was also energy inefficient.

When U-Haul began its search for a new lighting solution, it turned to LED lighting. U-Haul had previously considered LED technology but was concerned about the high temperatures in Phoenix so it initially considered fluorescent and induction options because of the higher Kelvin temperatures available. However, since its initial look, LED lighting technology greatly improved and became the clear choice for U-Haul this time around.

U-Haul Company’s requirements for its LED lighting solution included better light quality and performance, lower maintenance needs and costs, an outstanding product warranty and light-level control functionality. All of these features were needed without compromising on the ability to meet U-Haul Company’s prime sustainability goal of energy reduction. Cree® LED lighting was able to deliver the energy reduction U-Haul was seeking with all the performance, quality and control features it demanded.


The lighting upgrade for U-Haul was comprehensive and provided an excellent opportunity to maximize energy savings. “The scope of the project included replacing nearly 400 fluorescent lighting fixtures with LED luminaires,” said Michelle Sullivan, U-Haul Manager of Corporate Sustainability. All of the lighting in the parking garage was from 4-foot, 25-watt T8 lamps and roughly 85 percent of all fixtures included four lamps. “With the new LED applications we were able to eliminate more than 12 percent of our existing fixtures,” Sullivan continued.

The T8 lamps were replaced with Cree® VG Series LED parking structure luminaries because of the light quality and output and lighting controls available. The 24/7 availability of the corporate office meant the parking structure lighting would be on 24/7. With the VG Series lighting control features, the new lights operate when needed—and time in use has been trimmed to approximately four hours per day.

Along with energy saved via its new lighting solution, U-Haul saved maintenance costs as well. Prior to the new lighting, maintenance was performed by U-Haul building technicians approximately every three weeks and was scheduled before or after normal business hours for minimal impact on the normal traffic flow. Material costs, time and labor added up to a costly monthly exercise. Now, the building technicians can focus on other areas of the facility as the costs of installation and replacement products are freed up for other expenses.

In addition to positive numbers surrounding maintenance and energy savings, feedback on the new lighting has been excellent. “There are no longer dimly-lit areas in our parking structure that had previously raised safety concerns. With the increased amount and quality of light, visibility in the garage has improved overall,” Sullivan said.


The U-Haul project included installation of 324 Cree® VG Series parking structure luminaries, more than 50 Cree® LS Series surface ambient luminaires for ramp and stairwell lighting and OSQ Series and XSP Series outdoor luminaires. U-Haul is very pleased with its lighting solution because Cree was able to accommodate the aged and uniquely-shaped parking structure. This allowed U-Haul to modernize its lighting while working within its longstanding building design.

“The response from our U-Haul Team Members regarding the LED lights, including the amount and quality of light they provide, has been excellent,” Sullivan said. “The lighting has created a safer, sharper, more sustainable environment for our corporate parking structure.”

Along with vastly improved light quality, U-Haul is seeing its energy savings grow. The industry leader in do-it-yourself moving and self-storage expects to realize more than 15 percent energy savings from the LED lighting upgrade. The new lighting has reduced the existing wattage by more than 17,000 watts to provide an estimated annual kilowatt hour savings of more than 250,000 kWh. The expected lifetime savings is 3.7 million kWh. Additionally, U-Haul benefited from a generous rebate from Arizona Public Service (APS), its local utility provider.

U-Haul was started by the Shoen family to help other families move safely across the U.S. and Canada with their belongings in tow. This spirit of helping to improve the lives of others is reflected in U-Haul Company’s corporate values as well as its sustainability efforts, which are geared not only toward water and energy efficiency, but to providing a safe and comfortable environment for its Team Members.

U-Haul is best known for servicing the do-it-yourself moving public, but it is also an important member in the Arizona Forward coalition working to promote sustainability in the Grand Canyon State. That commitment shows in the numerous energy awards U-Haul has received as well as in the beautiful Cree LED lighting it has installed in its parking structure. Brilliant!

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