Channel letters are the professional choice for high-impact outdoor signage. They’re clearly visible 24 hours a day and guaranteed to draw people’s attention. Not every sign is the same, many use a neon tube as the light source while more modern units have moved on to LED. The four basic types of signs are front lit letters (the most common option), reverse lit letters, front and backlit letters, and open face letters. Whether you run a retail outlet, restaurant, gas station, hotel, spa, or any business really.
Types of Channel Letter Signs
There are no standard channel letter signs. All signage consists of an internal channel (hence the name) that houses the light fixture. The walls that make up the sides are called the return. The difference in the four types is how they’re lit and how the channel is covered.
Front Lit Channel Letters
Front lit channel letters are one of the most common types of signs that you see in retail environments. All front-lit signs have their light source facing forward and covered by a faceplate. If you are looking for cheap signs then front lit channel sign letters are your best option.
Reverse Lit Channel Letters
Reverse channel signs are the opposite, with the light pointing backward. High-quality reverse lit channel letters will also have a faceplate covering the illumination source. These have a trim cap that holds on the acrylic face while the light comes from behind. If you need an led sign light replaced, feel free to give us a call. These signs are often used for large outdoor pylon signs at malls.
Backlit Channel Letters
These signs have the lighting source from the back side of the acrylic face. They are the most common signs you will see at big grocery stores and malls. Behind the acrylic sheet, there is a coil that lights up the sign letters. These backlist signs are also referred to as cabinet signs. We have a wide variety of business signs but these are one of the most common led signs.
Open Face Channel Letters
are becoming less and less common because they tend not to last as long as their covered counterparts. As the name suggests, these letters have an open face or in other words, they’re lacking the faceplate that covers the illumination source. Because they lack a face plate, virtually all open-face signs use neon illumination.
Different Ways to Create Illuminated Letters
LED Channel Letters
There are several different ways to create illuminated sign lighting. The most common way and the most durable is to use LED channel lettering. These will last for years especially when you use stainless steel with an acrylic face for the lettering part. All of our channel letter signage is UL listed and rated.
Neon Channel Letters
While neon channel letter signs are outdated now because they do not last as long, they are starting to become trendy again as dimensional letters. Neon signs use a neon gas inside the custom signs to light up the halo lighting while the LED channel signs have led mounted lights on the inside of the channel lettering. If you are trying to decide between neon or led signage, keep in mind that neon tubes will only last about 5 years before they need to be replated. Neon tubing can also break much easier than standard logos.
There are two common methods for installing the sign face for channel letters, individual and raceway. Like it sounds, individual installation means you install each letter one at a time. It’s not the most convenient method, but sometimes it’s the only way. Raceway installation is just a fancy term for using a cabinet to mount your channel letter signs. The use of a raceway cabinet makes mounting the letters much more convenient.
- Gas station signs
- Retail store signs
- Mall signs