Fluorescent Tubes

Fluorescent Tubes In All Sizes

Fluorescent lighting is one of the better ways of illuminating a room. Fluorescent tubes will light up a room in a way that no other light bulbs can. They will provide an even spread of light without casting any shadows.

There are several shades of white that will light any area in exactly the way you want. The shades range from a warm yellow to a bright white. Standard white (835) and the brighter cool white (840) are the two most popular in the range. (continued below)

18W 2FT T8 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £1.86 in stock Quantity:





36W 4FT T8 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.20 in stock Quantity:





58W 5FT T8 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.49 in stock Quantity:





70W 6FT T8 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £3.67 in stock Quantity:





4W 6'' T5 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £1.17 in stock Quantity:





6W 9'' T5 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £1.17 in stock Quantity:





8W 12'' T5 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £1.17 in stock Quantity:





13W 21'' T5 Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £1.59 in stock Quantity:





14W 549mm T5 HE High Efficiency Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £1.96 in stock Quantity:





21W 849mm T5 HE High Efficiency Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.12 in stock Quantity:





28W 1149mm T5 HE High Efficiency Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.20 in stock Quantity:





35W 1449mm T5 HE High Efficiency Fluorescent Lampsmore...

Price: £2.52 in stock Quantity:





24W 549mm T5 HO High Output Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £1.96 in stock Quantity:





39W 849mm T5 HO High Output Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.12 in stock Quantity:





49W 1449mm T5 HO High Output Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.52 in stock Quantity:





54W 1149mm T5 HO High Output Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.36 in stock Quantity:





80W 1449mm T5 HO High Output Fluorescent Tubesmore...

Price: £2.81 in stock Quantity:





The fluorescent lamps in this guide fall into four categories and they are T12, T8, T5 and T5 Miniature. The T stands for Tubular and the number stands for how many eights of an inch they are in diameter. The T12 is 12/8 (38mm) of an inch, T8 is 8/8 (26mm) of an inch and the T5 5/8 (16mm) of an inch.

But, this should not concern you too much when you are ordering them. Your focus should be on the wattage as this will determine everything about the tube. Whatever wattage you are using at the moment is the one you should re-order.

It is surprising how many people order tubes by their length. That is the wrong way to order them. There is only one way to order and that is by using the wattage. If you order a different wattage to the one you have, the tube will be too long or too short for the light fitting.

When inspecting your tubes, always look at the wattage first. This will define its length and diameter. The wattage will determine whether its a T12, T8, T5 Miniature, T5 High Output or T5 High Efficiency tube. In most cases, the wattage will tell you everything except the colour.

I have listed four fluorescent tube groups below –

T8 Fluorescent Tubes (26mm)

If you have fluorescent lights above you, they probably contain T8 fluorescent tubes. T8 tubes are, at this moment in time, the most common of all the tubes. They were originally made with a choice of halophosphate or triphosphor gas. But, are now only made with the latter.

Halophosphate faded over time and light output was slowly but surely reduced. Triphosphor tubes will emit the same level of light throughout their working life.

They are available in four wattages including 18W, 36W, 58W and 70W. They have a G13 cap on either end, each with two pins that are 13mm apart. The lifespan of T8 fluorescent tubes can be as much as 20,000 hours which makes them very efficient.

They are also made for a range of specialist applications. Specialist tubes include SAD, Grolux, Gourmet, Germicidal, Blacklight and Shrinkwrapped.

T5 Fluorescent Tubes (16mm) HO And HE

The triphosphor T5 fluorescent tubes are very energy efficient. This makes them ideal for lighting large open office space.

They are available in High Output and High Efficiency versions. Both of these T5 fluorescent tubes will allow you to use fewer watts than a T8 tube for the same or more light.

The High Output (HO) T5 tube of equal length to a T8 tube will produce as much as 50% more light. However, it is important to remember the T5 tube is usually a slightly higher wattage. Even so, you will get more lighting for less energy.

The High Efficiency (HE) T5 tube will emit the same light as a T8 tube but will burn 20% fewer watts. The benefits of using T5 fluorescent tubes quickly becomes clear. If you use a lot of T5 tubes, there is going to be a huge saving on your electricity costs. That makes them very popular for new lighting installations.

The High Output is available in 24W, 39W, 49W, 54W and 80W. The High Efficiency is available in 14W, 21W, 28W and 35W. The tubes have a G5 cap on each end with two pins positioned 5mm apart.

They have a long lifespan of 24,000 hours which is longer than most other tubes. The colours include 830, 840 and 865.

T5 Miniature Fluorescent Tubes (16mm)

The T5 miniature fluorescent tubes are a small range of very short lamps. There are only four in the group and the longest is 21 inches.

They are designed for use in places where space is limited. This could be emergency lighting, illuminated signs and sometimes picture lights. You will also find them built into furniture. Furniture such as bathroom cabinets, mirrors and wardrobes.

For the smallest tubes, the lighting is very low but that is often all that is required. The wattages include 4W, 6W, 8W and 13W. The lengths of the tubes are 6 inch, 9 inch, 12 inch and 21 inch.

These tubes also have G5 caps, each has two pins with a 5mm space in-between. The average lifespan for T5 miniature fluorescent tubes is about 10,000 hours. There are a limited number of colours and they are white and cool white.

T12 Fluorescent Tubes (38mm)

T12 fluorescent tubes should be at the top of the fluorescent tube section, but I have put it at the bottom for a reason. If I tell you that T12 lighting technology is 70 to 80 years old, you quickly realize it is well and truly obsolete.

But, it may surprise you to know that the T12 tubes are still available if you know where to look. They are expensive so you should consider replacing them with T8 tubes.

The T8 tubes will fit into the T12 lamp-holders because both tubes have a 13mm space between the cap pins. You can use T8 replacements for the T12 2ft, 4ft, 5ft and 6ft but not the 8ft. If you have 8-foot fluorescent lights but cannot get the tubes, you will have to change the light fittings.

The T8 is a slightly lower wattage than a T12 of the same length. But, you will notice little difference in light output. The T8 also has a lifespan of 20,000 hours compared to 10,000 hours for the T12 tubes. The T12 fluorescent tubes are powered by the old inefficient magnetic ballasts. They will run the T8 as well.

In the UK, magnetic ballasts will run T8 tubes as long as they have a starter switch in the circuit. Starterless magnetic ballasts are designed for use only with T12 tubes. These magnetic ballasts are no longer installed into luminaires. But, they are available as spare parts if you need them.

Converting to the T8s will mean cheaper tubes, less power consumed and twice the lifespan. This makes the T8 tube far more energy efficient and economical to use. By changing from T12 to T8 tubes or new T5 lighting, you should make savings of between 40% to 50% every year.

T5, T8 And T12 Tubes – What You Should Do About Them

If you are keeping your T12 light fittings, you should re-lamp them with T8 tubes. As I said above, you can replace T12 tubes of 6ft and below with T8 tubes but not the 8ft.

If you have T8 lighting, at this stage there is no need to change to the better T5 lights. The T8 tubes are still viable technology and will remain in use for the foreseeable future.

Although LED will eventually replace all fluorescent, that will not be for some time. When they do, there will be LED T8 and T5 tubes to fit your existing light fittings.

But, when first introduced, like all technology it is usually quite expensive. Manufacturers tend to be in a hurry to recover their research costs. Over time prices will drop and they will come within the reach of most people and companies.

NOTE - All the above information is subject to the approval of the manufacturers of the products. Especially, when those products are used in quantity.

 

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