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always something
Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
always something

I am not sure what kind of lighting they call it but it really needs replacement. It consists of 4-48"-2 bulb
fluorescent ceiling lights (1980 style), above the kitchen cabinets. They are enclosed with an aluminum frame with plastic panels. It gives great light in the kitchen but the bulbs are a pain to replace.

I doubt anyone uses this kind of lighting these days so, what can I replace them with that would give me the same amount of light?

Appreciate any ideas.
Thanks

dj1
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
dj1

Quote: "I doubt anyone uses this kind of lighting these days so, what can I replace them with that would give me the same amount of light?"

First, they are still in use. You can even get replacement magnetic ballast, if you need one. T-12 bulbs are also available.

Second, If you want to replace your fixtures with the new version with electronic ballast, you can do it. If your knowledge in electrical work is limited, hire an electrician.

Fencepost
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
Fencepost

If you otherwise like the light fixture, you can replace the fluorescent tubes with LED tubes. Some of the LED tubes require removing the ballast; others will work with an existing rapid start or instant start ballast. (You'll need to know which type of ballast you have -- it will either be written on the ballast or you can look up the ballast's part number to find out what type it is.)

The LED tubes will last several times longer than the fluorescent. Personally, I would prefer the type that requires removing the ballast, since the ballast will waste electricity and be just one more thing to go bad.

http://www.homedepot.com/s/led%2520t8?NCNI-5

always something
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
always something

I replied to this post yesterday but for some reason it did not go through.

Thanks for the input. I originally said the lights were 2-bulb, however, they have only one bulb.

While out shopping I stopped in a lighting fixture store, the person I spoke with said they no longer use the type/style of lighting I have. He said if I wanted to up date the kitchen and make it look larger, to take out the frame and lights and replace them with low voltage halogen recessed lights and some pendant lights over the sink.

Wouldn't flush lights give me more light spread than recesssed ones?

dj1
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
dj1
always something wrote:

I replied to this post yesterday but for some reason it did not go through.

Thanks for the input. I originally said the lights were 2-bulb, however, they have only one bulb.

While out shopping I stopped in a lighting fixture store, the person I spoke with said they no longer use the type/style of lighting I have. He said if I wanted to up date the kitchen and make it look larger, to take out the frame and lights and replace them with low voltage halogen recessed lights and some pendant lights over the sink.

Wouldn't flush lights give me more light spread than recesssed ones?

Your thinking is correct, and what you do is up to you and your budget. Do you want to go with a modern look? if not and money is a concern, find replacement parts and stick with what you have.

The lighting store salesman is correct about a few things, but his primary goal is to make the sale.

richard3510
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
richard3510
always something wrote:

I replied to this post yesterday but for some reason it did not go through.

Thanks for the input. I originally said the lights were 2-bulb, however, they have only one bulb.

While out shopping I stopped in a lighting fixture store, the person I spoke with said they no longer use the type/style of lighting I have. He said if I wanted to up date the kitchen and make it look larger, to take out the frame and lights and replace them with low voltage halogen recessed lights and some pendant lights over the sink.

Wouldn't flush lights give me more light spread than recesssed ones?

YES

Also I called a local electrical supply company and the said the only 4 foot LED tubes that they sell are the ones that use the existing ballast and fast start that is installed in the fixture. 'Nothing is rewired or changed'.

Some LEDs will put out more light than the old tubes did. The also come in different temperatures, I personally like the 5000K lights. They are more like sunlight and the room and contents are seen in their more true color.

I agree with the post that said "leaving in the old ballast in one more thing to go out and use additional electricity.

richard3510
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
richard3510

I have 4 rooms that have the fluorescent light fixtures installed in the 1980's. I like the fixtures.

I read some of the information on various store sites that sell the LED tubes that may require the ballasts to the bypassed. I called my local electrical supply and asked them about the LED T8 tubes. They told me that the only ones they sell require the ballast. When I said that one fixture is making noise they said that I would need to replace the ballast.

I think that opening the fixture and wiring out the ballast would be best. What do you think?

Is the LED T8 tube just an led device that uses 120 volts and probably has voltage regulation and surge protection?

I would appreciate and comments about the above.

:confused:

Mastercarpentry
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
Mastercarpentry

There's also the option of fixture replacement with modern florescents which does away with the usual problems these give. Just because newer styles are used does not render older styles useless, and many times the older style will look better when you don't also upgrade the other design elements such as cabinets and countertops. Halogens aren't bad, but they're going out as fast as the rest as LED technology races forward. I'd be inclined to junk it all and go with new LED fixtures which use Cree or Nichia emitters- those seem to be the best- and they have a wide color range (K temps) to choose from.

Geez, it used to be easy- just choose a wattage and screw in a bulb but now lighting is a complex science too :rolleyes:

Phil

Fencepost
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
Fencepost

I "refinished" the cabinets in my church's kitchen by replacing the old T12 fluorescents with T8 and a better color temperature.

Before the lighting change, the natural-finish maple cabinets had a sick, uninviting greenish hue. After the lighting change, they had a nicer, warm g0lden hue. No sanding, staining, or respirators necessary!

Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?

All great comments. Because I've seen magnetic ballast leak and burn up I would not replace one, even though I have a supply of them.

Rewiring with electronic ballasts and T5 or T8 lamps are not quite as efficient as LED's but, it would take an awful long time to break even with LED's if you consider; initial cost, labor and electrical savings.

Also, you said you liked the look of the 1980 fixtures.

The new no-wiring direct replacement LED lamps are fairly new so I'm still holding my breath.

ed21
Re: Update/Replace old fluorescent lights?
ed21

I was just browsing in the hardware store and I saw a blast from the past. Porcelain pull chain sockets. Slap a 100 watt bulb in it and you were good to go. I still have a few in the basement and a few have a combination of fluorescent and LED bulbs in them, but the 100 watt bulb throws the best light.
I'm kind of liking some of the LED fixtures, but if the old fixture is easily fixed and it still looks good why spend the extra when the payback is probably many years in the future. LED's are bound to come down in price.

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