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Flourescent bulb question

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  • Flourescent bulb question

    I had a flourescent ballast go bad the went to HD (first mistake!) to buy a new one. I looked at a complete 8', 2 bulb fixture at $33. Asked the dork in the elect. dept. if he had just a ballast for the same style fixture. He took me to rows and rows of ballasts and grabbed one and said "this one here is the one you need"! Well, it was $48!!!! (ballast ONLY) I then noticed it was for 227 volts and mine is 120. Anyways, another goober came by and I told him what I had, same as the display and they began looking and reading boxes. Finally found one they "thought" would work......$28!!

    Anyways, thinking my chances of the totally new fixture having the right ballast already in it was pretty good, I opted for the new fixture.

    Got it home, installed it, put in 2 brand new tubes and turned the lights on and they were yellow and dimmer in the center, brighter at the ends and had these weird dark pulsing wave looking things moving inside both tubes.

    I pulled the tubes and put the old ones in and presto! Nice clean white non-pulsing light! My new tubes ended up as 60watt and the old ones were 75 watt. Both "should" have worked ok, right? No? Why the pulsing waves inside? Is this new fixture bad or are the 60watt tubes just crappy?


  • #2
    Re: Flourescent bulb question

    There are different fluorescent tube types. You need to check that they work with the ballast you have. Look at the numbers on the bulb - i.e. F40T12CW/IS

    The last letters refer to the type of ballast - IS=Instant-Start and RS=Rapid-Start


    • #3
      Re: Flourescent bulb question

      Being an 8 foot fixture you'll need F96T/xx/xxx tubes. Today there are loads of newer energy saving types and many do require a matching ballast to work. Look at the numbers on your old tubes (The ones that do work) and please post info. If your new ones that won't work end with EM, EW or SS they are the new energy saving type. If you can, please post the numbers for both the old and new tubes. In many cases even a new ballast (unless made for newer tubes) will require the older Standard type tubes.

      From what I can figure, you simply have a matching issue. If you want cool white light, try to find either General Electric F96T12/SP41 or Sylvania F96T12/D41 tubes. If you want a warm light (nice for living areas) you would look for General Electric F96T12/SP30 or Sylvania F96T12/D30 tubes. Be sure they do NOT have EM, EW or SS as part of the number on them.

      These replace the older F96T12/CW (cool white) and F96T12/WW (warm white) tubes. The above will put out a little more light and of better quality. That is colors will look better than with the older tubes.
      Last edited by Woussko; 05-20-2007, 08:28 PM.