How do you use a lumen meter?


Quick Answer

Using a lumen meter is usually a simple, two-step process that takes just a few minutes. Find the location you want to measure, and hold the sensor out. Turn on the meter to view the reading. Each model varies slightly on specifics, so consult the owner's manual for further details.

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Full Answer

  1. Determine the source of light

    Observe the sources of light in the area you will be measuring. If you are seeking to measure the total luminescence of the room, you need not concern yourself with whether or not the light source is natural or man-made. If you are concerned with energy consumption through man-made light sources, shut the curtains or shades to ensure that only man-made sources are being detected.

  2. Place the sensor

    Scan the room for the spot where you plan to take the measurement. There should be a direct path to the source of light. Make sure the sensor is not being hindered by any type of shade as you hold it out. Some meters may have the sensor built into the whole unit, while others might have a sensor that must be attached using a cable.

  3. Turn on the meter

    Turn on the meter to see the reading. Some lumen meters may need to be reset prior to producing the reading. Alternate units, such as footcandles, may be available with some models.

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