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New flicker free fluoros.

Discussion in 'Electronics & Electrics' started by xc351, May 28, 2013.

  1. xc351

    xc351 Member

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    Well today at work I noticed some of the fluoros have been changed to a new thiner 4ft bulb in an adaptor including a reflector. They are the size of t8 and starters have been removed. As I wasn't alloud to stand on the admins desk to rip one out. All I saw was low energy some thing.

    Any one know what these are? I hate how my bulbs take a few seconds to power up.
     
  2. RobRoySyd

    RobRoySyd Member

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    Sure, installed a lot of these but as new fittings.
    They're the T5 tubes which can only be used with electronic ballasts. You get a bit more light for the number of watts they use plus as you've noticed they start much quicker. They still take a minute or so to reach maximum output.

    The T8 lamps also run better off electronic ballasts but it's not so common to use them probably because of cost. That said for a new building fit out I was responsible for over a decade ago I insisted on all electronic ballasts. In a commercial building when you factor in the saving in power, AC and maintenance costs the payback on using electronic ballasts is good.

    [edit] Of course they also could be LEDs.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2013
  3. OP
    OP
    xc351

    xc351 Member

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    I don't think they were LEDs they were very uniform light out out.
    Do the require ballest removal as well (normal iron ballests) also do you know what wattage they are? I have 3 double fluoros that stay on 24/7 at my place due to me working shifts and carport light just a bugger to turn off (switch right at back of carport in corner.

    Only t5's I played with are aquarium t5 ho which are 54w and still require a ballest.
     
  4. RobRoySyd

    RobRoySyd Member

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    The T5 tubes require an electronic ballast. They are also a little shorter than their corresponding T8 tubes. That was done intentionally to make it impossible to even try to fit a T5 tube into a T8 fitting.

    So to convert a T8 luminaire to T5 you need to replace the ballast with one specifically made for T5 tubes, you need to do some metalwork to fit new tombstones at the correct spacing for the T5 tubes. Wattages roughly correspond to those for T8/9 tubes, off the top of my head the nominal 4' tubes are 32 watts.

    Rather than all that drama of having to do metalwork if you really want to stay with fluro tubes it would be much less work to replace the existing iron ballast with an electronic (aka high frequency) one and continue to use T8 tubes. There T5 are not significantly better compared to the T8 tubes. The reason there's a slow move to T5 is to save packaging and transport costs and because the forced use of electronic ballasts means the tubes last longer. Also the thinner tube makes for more aesthetically pleasing lumiere designs. From a functional perspective T8 tubes with electronic ballasts will perform as well as T5s.

    By comparison Osram and others make LED replacement tubes that come as a kit. Remove old tube and starter, fit new starter and tube. The new starter is a dummy just to fill the hole. Not all manufacturers include the dummy starter. Those tubes contain a LOT of LEDs and provide some diffusion. They're not exactly cheap either, well the good ones aren't.
     
  5. MetalPhreak

    MetalPhreak Member

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    High-frequency electronic ballasts get rid of the flicker.

    As was stated earlier, T8s can actually be as efficient as T5s if they have an electronic ballast. All of the LED replacement T8 tubes are a joke and a waste of money. The T5 tube + electronic ballast in a T8 shell options aren't bad. Pretty much any new fitout would have T5 fittings now.

    T5 come as 14/21/28/35W standard output for the 600/900/1200/1500mm lengths. There are high output tubes that are ~2x the power but are less efficient. Green/Eco tubes are 25W vs 28W with the same 2600lm output.

    T8s of the same length give more light output and use a bit more power in doing so. The biggest losses in T8s was the iron core transformers.

    Even for brand new fittings, LED still isn't worth it. At the end of a 10yr period, even with energy savings and no lamp replacement costs, the T5s are still cheaper. What many companies don't mention, is the LED fittings dim to 70% of the initial brightness after 10years and the WHOLE FITTING has to be replaced. $$$$. A fluoro tube is usually tossed after it hits 80% output.
     
  6. RobRoySyd

    RobRoySyd Member

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    I'd seen them a long time ago and forgot about them as I had serious reservations about getting them into most of the troffers in common usage.

    Have you actually managed to get them into one?

    They still don't seem all that easy to buy. We ended up having to order them through Rexel, pretty cheap Yum Cha 2x35W surface mount fittings imported by someone in Qld. Still they're lightweight which made them perfect. After 2 years none have failed thankfully.


    Agree, LEDs are problematic. It's only the "white" ones that aren't going to last as they also use a phosphor which will wear out. Their spectral output is general crap as well. The white LEDs that are good aren't cheap and of course they will still wear out. We have some lighting instruments which use RGB LEDs which are fantastic but way, way too expensive for general lighting outside of film and TV.
     
  7. MetalPhreak

    MetalPhreak Member

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    The company I spoke with about the "T5 in a T8" replacement tubes has installed them on a couple of the floors in other tenancies in our building. They actually do a leasing option rather than outright purchase as well which was kind of interesting. Beyond that I haven't had much experience with them. I work mainly on new designs or complete refurbishment jobs rather than retrofits.

    Every single job we do, T5s with HF electronic ballasts are in every specification. Where are you looking that you can only find T8s?

    Pierlite, Zumtobel, Thorn, Fagerhult (Eagle Lighting), and many others do heaps of T5 products - whether you need office lights, high bay fluorescents, battens, weatherproof outdoor fittings etc.



    http://www.ultralamp.com.au/index.php?option=com_phocagallery&view=category&id=30&Itemid=57

    Pretty sure it was these (the WA distributors name sounds familiar...)
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2013
  8. RobRoySyd

    RobRoySyd Member

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    In stock at the local trade suppliers such as Rexel or Turks. Palette loads of T8 fittings and there's always some on special, never see the T5s sold like that. I needed 4off 4' for a rarely used store. I ended up with 4off 2x4' at $25 each. Rexel etc do stock a good range of T5 tubes.

    Sure they're in the catalogues, just not on the shelves or in the average sparkies face when they go to grab a couple of lights for a small job. Also the local manufacturers price isn't inviting. I didn't find any that were less than double what we'd have paid for much the same in T8. In the end we got the Oriel Wave 2x 35W T5 fittings for about $70 each. http://ecatalogue.oriel-lighting.com.au/Product/OL60709fslash;235SIL/wave-twin-35w-sil

    That was just over two years ago now, maybe things have changed but searching online I'm still not seeing it.

    As for the T5 replacements, no one I can find is simply listing a price online.
    Leasing them, sounds to me like they're selling snake oil.
     
  9. 2xCPU

    2xCPU Member

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    Amusingly - Aldi will have single tube T5's next saturday.
    $28 probably makes it worth looking at.

    2.
     
  10. RussellK

    RussellK Member

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    Cheers for the heads-up. I specced a heap of T5's for a site, only to find they're not the easiest thing to come by, particularly if you have a mix of daylight and warm-white.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    xc351

    xc351 Member

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    I might swap them out. They were old t8's and were retrofitted with the t5 adaptors the adaptors also had a reflector in them.

    Is there anyware I can pic them up online.
     
  12. 2xCPU

    2xCPU Member

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    Aldi offers specials to get you in the shop. The best you can do is get a mate to pick some up.

    2.
     
  13. OP
    OP
    xc351

    xc351 Member

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    No aldi near buy.

    Also at 35w isn't much if a saving. No idea how much power the ballest wastes.

    Might even look at LEDs
     
  14. RobRoySyd

    RobRoySyd Member

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    My local Rexel seem to stock plenty of Osram T5 tubes in both Daylight and Warm White.

    For domestic lighting it's harder to justify all the drama attached to using T5 tubes and electronic ballasts just to save on your power bill compared to a commercial installation where the lights are on all the time plus there's also the cost of running A/C to pull the heat out of the building generated by lighting.

    The T5 luminaires are generally more attractive which is the main reason I'd go for them in a domestic setting.

    Be careful with LEDs, fluros generally produce a higher quality light than LEDs.
     
  15. the3coopers

    the3coopers Member

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    The things that the OP is talking about are a T8 to T5 adaptor

    A quick and dirty conversion. Saves power by under-running the T5 tube down to about 22W. HEAPS less light.

    They are about 60 lumens per watt, significantly less efficient than the T8 that they are replacing.

    Typical 4ft T8 on magnetic ballast is 3350 lumens for 42 watts (low loss in modern office) = 80 lm/W

    36W T8 on quality electronic ballast is 3200 lumens for 35 watts = 91 lm/W

    28W T5 is 2600 lumens using 32 Watts = 81.25 lm/W

    T5 Adapter is generally about 1550 lumens using 25W = 62 lm/W

    Don't be conned into thinking that T5 is more efficient... it's not.
     

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