Capacitive switch control panel with 15 buttons, LED indicator lights, and integrated window

Backlighting isn’t restricted to TVs, touchscreens and other display devices. You can find it in switches as well. Both membrane and mechanical switches, for instance, often feature backlighting. They are designed with a backlighting layer that, during use, illuminates the keys on the overlay layer. While there are several types of backlighting for switches, however, few compare to electroluminescent (EL). EL backlighting offers several benefits when used for switches, some of which include the following.

#1) Simple Design

EL backlighting uses a simple design. It consists of phosphor compounds that are embedded within a layer. The phosphor compounds are separated by two panes of a conductive material. When you turn on the switch, a voltage will be applied to the backlighting layer. Electricity will flow through the conductive material where it’s able to reach the phosphor compounds. Once exposed to the electricity, the phosphor compounds will illuminate.

#2) Energy Efficient

All types of backlighting require energy — and EL backlighting is no exception. With that said, EL backlighting is energy efficient. It requires less energy than many other types of backlighting. The end result is a lower operational cost. The switch will consume less electricity due to the energy-efficient properties of EL backlighting.

#3) Saves Money

Because it’s energy efficient, EL backlighting can save you money. Energy, of course, costs money. Whether it’s a portable or stationary switch, it will cost money in the form of energy to use. You can cut the operational cost of a switch, though, by choosing a switch with EL backlighting. EL backlighting is energy efficient, so it doesn’t require as much energy as other types of backlighting.

#4) Uniform Brightness

Another benefit of EL backlighting for switches is uniform brightness. It’s not uncommon for switches to develop bright spots. Some areas of the overlay layer, for instance, may be noticeably brighter than other areas. Fortunately, this isn’t a concern with EL backlighting. It offers uniform brightness by projecting even illumination across the overlay layer.

#5) Flexible

EL backlighting is flexible. You can choose EL backlighting that’s semi-elastic and flexible so that it can contour to the shape of a switch. Other types of backlighting are typically rigid. With their rigid and stiff composition, they can’t be used for all switches. Small switches, as well as switches in unique shapes, may require flexible backlighting, such as EL backlighting.