LED Lighting Facts
Verification Testing Policy


Overview

The goal of the LED Lighting Facts Verification Testing program is to maintain the high level of confidence that partners have in the accuracy of LED Lighting Facts product data and encourage accurate reporting of product performance. Verification Testing benefits all partners, as buyers and specifiers have access to off-the-shelf testing results and manufacturer's products have greater visibility through the LED Lighting Facts website.

Products are selected from the LED Lighting Facts Product List and purchased through an independent procurement agent directly from distributors and retailers to ensure that the results reflect how the products perform in the market. The program works with accredited independent testing laboratories in the U.S. to test products in accordance with Verification Testing protocols. All products are tested using LM-79 Integrating Sphere Testing, and products with a lumen maintenance claim are also tested using in-situ temperature measurement test (ISTMT). To ensure relevance in a rapidly changing market, the process is conducted in a 60-day timeframe for each model, so cooperation is needed from all parties involved (manufacturers, laboratories, procurement agents).   

Manufacturers are encouraged to review this Verification Testing Policy, as continued use of the LED Lighting Facts program and product submission process indicates agreement with all the manufacturer terms and conditions. LED Lighting Facts will provide information and guidance to manufacturers so they can anticipate costs and budget accordingly. Compliance with the complete LED Lighting Facts Verification Testing Policy is required for manufacturers to maintain an active partnership status. Failure to comply will result in the removal of all listed products from the LED Lighting Facts database, rendering the manufacturer's partnership with LED Lighting Facts inactive. The LED Lighting Facts program is voluntary and open to all manufacturer partners, so a manufacturer will be able to reactivate the partnership and list new products. However, those products will also be subject to the program's Verification Testing policies. 
 

Product Selection


Any LED Lighting Facts listed product may be selected by the program for Verification Testing; this includes both parent and related family products.  LED Lighting Facts selects products that have been designated by the manufacturer as currently available in the market, either as a made to order product or standard stocked/in stores. The program reserves the right to choose products for Verification Testing based on the need to preserve the integrity of LED Lighting Facts. 

If a product has been designated as available and is chosen for Verification Testing, the manufacturer is responsible for providing information on where the product can be purchased. As always, the manufacturer has the option of listing a product as "not yet commercially available," indicating that it is being introduced into market channels, but not yet available for purchase.  

If a manufacturer cannot confirm where a product can be purchased or if a procurement agent cannot locate a product within 30 or 45 days (30 days if stocked in stores or 45 days if made to order only), the manufacturer will be expected to change the product listing to "not yet commercially available" within one week. If this occurs, the program will continue choosing products from the manufacturer's portfolio until an available product can be procured. 

As stated in the Annual Product Status Update and Product Identification policies, if the manufacturer changes the status of the product to "not yet commercially available" and at the time of its next status update, it still cannot be located in the market, the program expects the manufacturer to archive the product. 

Verification Testing Costs


Costs for Verification Testing include product procurement and testing. Manufacturers are responsible for all costs associated with Verification Testing, and will work directly with the testing laboratory and procurement agent to coordinate and handle all financial transactions. All costs are solely established by the procurement agents and the testing laboratories.

In an effort to provide transparency and assist manufacturers with planning and budgeting, following is an example of the cost for Verification Testing.
 

$168.40 + $500.00 + $1350.00 = $2,008.40
Retail Price
(includes 7% sales tax)
Procurement Cost
(includes shipping & handling)
LM-79
Sphere Test
Total Cost

Example Assumptions:
A19 LED replacement lamp
Retail price $25
6 samples for the LM-79 sphere test


Please note that this is an example, and actual testing and procurement costs will vary based on a variety of factors determined by the procurement agent and testing laboratory.
 

Coordination with ENERGY STAR® Certified Luminaires


LED products are also subject to verification testing as part of the ENERGY STAR program. In an effort to reduce duplicate testing costs, the LED Lighting Facts Verification Testing program will accept LM-79 and ISTMT test report results for luminaire products that are tested as part of the ENERGY STAR verification testing program.[1] This savings opportunity is available for luminaire products only.

How to Coordinate Testing Results for ENERGY STAR Certified Luminaires

  1. Confirm that all eligible products on the LED Lighting Facts Product List are correctly identified as ENERGY STAR certified. All product listings can be edited from the Manage Your Products page. 
  2. Coordinate with the CB or laboratory on any ENERGY STAR certified luminaires that are listed with LED Lighting Facts and ask the CB or lab to notify you when any of those luminaires are selected for ENERGY STAR verification testing.
  3. Email verification@lightingfacts.com with luminaire models undergoing ENERGY STAR verification testing and include the associated CB or lab company name and contact information.
  4. Instruct the CB or lab via email to release the following ENERGY STAR verification testing information on the product(s) to LED Lighting Facts (verification@lightingfacts.com must be copied on the email):
    1. LM-79 sphere test results for all identified luminarie products
    2. ISTMT results for any luminaire with a lumen maintenance claim on LED Lighting Facts (the manufacturer should indicate to the CB or lab which products require lumen maintenance verification)

LED Lighting Facts Verification Testing will be suspended for a model once notification is received that the model is undergoing ENERGY STAR verification testing. When the CB or lab provides complete and appropriate testing results to LED Lighting Facts, the model will be exempt from LED Lighting Facts Verification Testing for a minimum of 12 months.

The performance data submitted by the CB or lab will be evaluated by LED Lighting Facts and subject to all Verification Testing policies. LED Lighting Facts will evaluate and apply the LED Lighting Facts tolerance policy to the average of all samples tested for the required metrics. If the luminaire has a lumen maintenance claim listed with LED Lighting Facts, ISTMT results should also be provided.
 

Verification Testing Tolerances


Tolerances will be applied to tested or calculated family products to determine whether a product passes Verification Testing. Verification Testing tolerances are different from the tolerances used for initial testing. Manufacturers are encouraged to familiarize themselves with tolerances for both initial submissions and Verification Testing. For more information on tolerances for initial submissions, please see the Product Submission and Testing Requirements.

Determining Pass or Fail

The metrics that determine pass/fail are the required metrics and lumen maintenance, if initially claimed. These values represent the only metrics listed with LED Lighting Facts that have tolerances established for Verification Testing.

Required Metrics
Verification Testing tolerances for lumens, watts, CRI, and CCT were developed based on guidance contained in NEMA LSD 63-2012 (Measurement Methods and Performance Variation for Verifying Testing of General Purpose Lamps and Systems). There is no additional tolerance for efficacy. Since efficacy is calculated as lumens/watts, the product will pass for efficacy if the test results meet the lumen and watts tolerance requirements. Because of the flexible Verification Testing policy, no appeals are allowed.
 

Lumen Maintenance
If lumen maintenance is included with the original product listing, it will be tested using the in-situ temperature measurement test (ISTMT) during Verification Testing. The ISTMT results will be used with the originally submitted LM-80 data and the ENERGY STAR TM-21 Calculator data to calculate a lumen maintenance value for the tested product. Because the Verification Testing sample size is one product, the manufacturer can choose to have one additional sample tested using ISTMT if the first sample fails. If the second sample fails, no additional testing or disputes are allowed.

Tolerances for Pass/Fail Metrics

The following test value tolerances will be applied to determine whether a product passes Verification Testing for the required metrics and lumen maintenance (if initially listed). These tolerances use limits, which are expressed as a percentage below and above the listed values posted on LED Lighting Facts (LCV = lower critical value; UCV = upper critical value). 

Verification Testing Tolerances

Metric Designation Limit Type Verification
Tolerances
Lumens Required LCV -9.6%
Watts Required UCV +12.7%
CRI Required LCV -5.9%
CCT Required UCV & LCV +/-8.1%
Lumen Maintenance Optional LCV -10%*

* The lumen maintenance tolerance was selected as a reasonable value since no industry standard guidance is available.

The mean of the units tested must be above the LCV or below the UCV listed for that product by the percentages shown above. If the mean exceeds these tolerances, the product will be designated as having failed Verification Testing. The product type will determine the sample size and therefore the mean of the units tested.
 

Verification Testing Sample Size for LM-79

Product Type Sample Size
For LM-79
Replacement Lamps 6
Most Luminaries 3
Custom Made/Special Order 1
For ISTMT
Any product 1


Additional Metrics (No Tolerances)

Additional Performance metrics (excluding lumen maintenance) are not used to determine whether a product passes Verification Testing and have no tolerance values. However, the product listing reports and compares all Verification Testing results of both required and additional metrics (if the metric is initially listed). There are seven additional metrics that can be tested using LM-79 Integrating Sphere Testing, and are included with the Verification Testing results:

  1. Warranty
  2. Power Factor
  3. Input Voltage
  4. Total Harmonic Distortion
  1. R9 Value
  2. Duv
  3. Dimmability

 

Because Verification Testing only uses the LM-79 Integrating Sphere Test, all remaining metrics will not have tested values listed in the product summary, even if the metric was included on the initial listing.
 

Verification Testing Results


The LED Lighting Facts Verification Testing program is designed to be both transparent and flexible, meaning that all users will have access to the results, but the manufacturer will also have the opportunity to respond to failed results and revise the listed data accordingly. The resulting actions, as outlined below, are meant to encourage the accurate listing of product data, but also provide buyers and specifiers with a clear understanding of which products are performing in the market as claimed. 

Product Listing

The Verification Testing results will be publically listed in association with each product on the LED Lighting Facts Product List (www.lightingfacts.com/products). The product summary will not indicate a pass or fail, but it will feature the average testing results in relation to the initially listed product metrics. The Product List will also include an option to search for products that have been verification tested by LED Lighting Facts.

For the purpose of maintaining the integrity of the Product List, if a product fails to test within the allowable Verification Testing tolerances, the manufacturer has the option of revising the product’s performance information. If the manufacturer chooses to leave the data unchanged, the product will be archived.

Verification Testing Scorecard

If a product fails Verification Testing, the manufacturer has the option of changing the product listing to reflect the verified results. However, it is important to the end user to know if products in the same portfolio have a history of passing or failing. Therefore, LED Lighting Facts will publicize a summary of the testing results by manufacturer using a Verification Testing Scorecard (VTS) that represents the percent of products tested that passed verification in relation to the total number of products tested.

A VTS is only made public for a manufacturer once three tests have been completed, and is a rolling average of the five most recent verification tests. Failed results are factored into the VTS as a failure, and are strictly based on Verification Testing results compared to initial submission values. Results are only classified as “failures” in order to calculate the manufacturer’s VTS, regardless of any efforts to revise the product data.
 

Roles and Responsibilities

 
The LED Lighting Facts Verification Testing program involves testing laboratory and procurement agent partner types, in addition to manufacturer partners. Because coordination is critical to the process, an overview of the specific roles and responsibilities of each partner type are listed below. 

Testing Laboratories:

  • Receive product samples.
  • Test to LM-79 for all products received.
  • Test one sample to ISTMT only if lumen maintenance is claimed (not applicable to all products).
  • Send test results to LED Lighting Facts using the approved form.
  • Adhere to all timeline requirements as identified by LED Lighting Facts throughout the process and notify LED Lighting Facts of any delays.

Procurement Agents:

  • Coordinate with LED Lighting Facts and/or the manufacturers to determine where and how samples may be procured.
  • Notify LED Lighting Facts of procurement issues that will delay the Verification Testing timeline or necessitate changes to the product status (i.e., product cannot be found after 30 or 45 days, depending on the product type).
  • Purchase the selected products, using the number of samples specified, which will be provided when the product notification is received.
  • Ship samples to the selected lab (identified by the manufacturer).

Manufacturers:

  • Select the lab that will conduct testing, and notify that lab that it has been selected.
  • Provide procurement information to LED Lighting Facts.
  • Coordinate with testing lab and procurement agent for payment.
  • If a product failed Verification Testing, determine whether to make necessary updates to product listing as needed or allow the product to go to the Product Archive List.
  • Notify LED Lighting Facts if any ENERGY STAR certified lamps are identified for ENERGY STAR Verification Testing (follow instructions for “Coordination with ENERGY STAR Certified Lamps”.)

LED Lighting Facts:

  • Select products for Verification Testing.
  • Notify the manufacturer and procurement agent of product selection, and confirm the number of samples required for testing (based on product type and lumen maintenance claim).
  • Ensure that the process for each product selected is being followed per the policies and timeline requirements.
  • Receive and review test results received from the lab.
  • Notify the manufacturer of testing results and take action for failed products as necessary.
  • Post test results on LED Lighting Facts Product List.
  • Record test results as part of Verification Testing Scorecard.
     

[1] Please note that this policy only impacts the LED Lighting Facts verification program and is not intended to make any statements or claims about ENERGY STAR verification testing. Contact ENERGY STAR with questions about ENERGY STAR verification testing.