Latest Discussions : Electrical & Lighting


06:54AM | 12/05/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
My first I NEED HELP POST : ) This deals with fluorescent lights in the garage. The new ballasts light poorly I've checked the wiring 5 times, I know thats right. The ballast label reads "minimum starting temp 50 degrees F." Do they make ballasts & light tubes for colder temps?? If so what do I look for. The lights are f96t12. Thanks C.

Tom O

09:42AM | 12/05/04
Member Since: 09/17/02
476 lifetime posts
You could check into electronic balasts & T8 lamps. Eight footers would be expensive though, probably $70 per ballast & $10 per lamp. Your other options would be replace the existing fixtures with 2 lamp 4 foot strips with electronic ballsts & t8 lamps, minimum starting temperature is zero degrees F. Or, 8 foot 2 lamp high output strips, also low starting temp & more light output tha

Tomn the fixtures you have currently installed.


05:19PM | 12/05/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
Yep, redoing an oldie in the garage. Old ballast shorted out a couple of weeks ago. Tom, I'm gonna try an electronic for the 8' t-8s & give it a whirl. It won't be till next weekend till I can fix it. I'll let you know how I make out. C.


07:35PM | 12/23/04
Member Since: 12/19/04
62 lifetime posts
Cellar, You may still have trouble with the T-8 bulbs. Although the ballast is rated for cold temp the bulbs may still be dim. If so, You can purchase plastice tubes that enclose the T-8 bulb to contain some of the heat and help them to work better. Call the manufacturer of the bulb and ask them the operation temps of the T-8 bulb. They will confirm what I am saying. Want bright light? An 8' F96T12HO high output fixture. Or keep the T12 you have now and use them only in the warmer weather. Set the garage up for incandescant in the winter.

Good Luck.



03:28AM | 12/24/04
Member Since: 03/21/04
171 lifetime posts
I have found that painting the garage ceiling with high luster white paint will give the effect of having more light. also having fixtures with reflectors in place of the shop light will also help as the light is reflected downward




11:39PM | 12/24/04
Member Since: 06/23/04
161 lifetime posts
The light fixture Wireman mentioned is probably your best investment. It's an 8 foot, two lamp, F96T12HO (High Output) fixture. This fixture is specifically designed for use outside and in cold weather. It is commonly used for illuminating business signs. Not only will it start and give you full light output, it delivers about 40% more lumens than the standard 8' fixture. I saw one in our local L*w*s selling for about $65.00 (without lamps). The lamps were about $5.75 each The F96T12HO lamps are specific for this fixture but don't cost much more than the standard lamps.

The T12 series are the older 1.5" diameter lamps that consume about 40 watts for a 4' lamp. The T8 series are the newer 1" diameter lamps that consume about 32 watts for a 4' lamp. The newer lamps aren't any more "energy efficient" than the old ones, they're just smaller. The newer electronic ballasts are more energy efficient than the older wire-wound transformer types and they operate at lower temperatures. The T8 fixtures and lamps are "energy savers" because they consume fewer watts. What nobody mentions is that they also deliver proportionally fewer lumens of illumination (about 20% less). If you are looking for more light you may be heading in the wrong direction with the T8.

One advantage of the 8' (T8 or T12) fixtures is that the lamps are a lot easier to install than the 4' because they have a single pin that doesn't require precise vertical alignment and twisting to set. The single pin is simply pushed into a spring loaded hole.

I installed one F96T12HO in my 12x16 covered work area along with one incandescent fixture. When I'm doing undemanding work I use the incandescent with a 60 watt bulb. When I want light, the F96T12HO does the job in spades. As carl21l mentioned, painting the ceiling white really helps no matter what fixture you use.



03:59PM | 12/30/04
Member Since: 12/09/03
175 lifetime posts
Thanks everyone for your input! : ) I rebuilt the old fixture with new ballasts & lampholders and the f96HO's flpped the switch.. and VIOLA! Iv'e got more light than S**rs! My neighbors jealous now. Thanks. Cellarwater, Moderator basements & attics.


05:46AM | 04/05/18
Member Since: 04/05/18
3 lifetime posts
It is very difficult for fluorescent tube to tolerate the low temperature. Instead, you can consider the use of LED lights inside garage. It is beacuse the LED lighting uses the solid-state chips that is able to function normally up to -50 degree celcius. there are much info at this page.

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