There are many reasons why LEDs are a great alternative to neon when considering retrofitting a sign. LEDs not only require less power, only 12 volts compared to neon which can require up to 15,000 volts, they are also much safer than neon bulbs because they are less of a fire hazard.
Another important benefit of using LED bulbs in signage is that they have a long lifespan, which in turn means they don’t need to be changed as often and require less maintenance. LEDs are also much more durable than neon bulbs and are able to withstand shock and vibrations, whereas neon bulbs often break during transport. Even in cold weather, LEDs shine bright, while neon bulbs can be affected by colder temperatures.
LEDs are much more readily available, as well. Neon bulbs must each be handcrafted, meaning the time it takes to fabricate the bulbs is much longer. Installing LEDs is also less invasive than installing neon bulbs.
In the spring of 2014, Odegard Sign & Lighting converted an existing channel letter sign for Prairie Life Fitness in Olathe that was previously neon. This was a large letter set with 3 ½ foot channel letters. After removing the existing neon and transformers, more energy efficient LED modules and power supplies were installed. Not only will the sign be more energy efficient, it will also require less maintenance in the future and is more brightly illuminated.