The Benefit Of Switching to T-8 Sockets And Tubes

by | Aug 4, 2015 | Electronics and Electrical

If you have older styles of T-12 fluorescent light fixtures in a shop, workroom, commercial building or even in a home, there are a lot of benefits to switching to T-8 sockets and tubes.

In general, and for virtually all applications, switching from T-12 to T-8 sockets and bulbs is much more energy efficient. The narrower size of the bulb, one inch compared to an inch and a half, provides greater light with less energy draw.

Both types of lights will burn about 20,000 hours per bulb, providing a very good return on investment for the lights. With smaller lamps, often four feet in length, the cost savings of T-8 over T-12 in energy savings over the life of a bulb will pay for the replacement when the lifetime of the bulb is over.

Brighter Light

One of the first things you will notice if you replace your T-12 fixtures with T-8 sockets and bulbs is the increase in the light available. This is known as lumens, with the T-8 outperforming the T-12 both in the quality and the intensity of the light produced by the fixture.

This is ideal in areas such as workplaces, garages, underground parking and other areas were lighting is essential. With the ability to provide more intense, high-quality light the T-8 sockets and bulbs provide a true benefit.

In addition to just the better light, the T-8 sockets and bulbs provide a better color as well. The T-8 bulbs actually contain rare-earth phosphors, which are different than the halophosphates found in the T-12 bulbs. This gives more true color when viewing items under the light, a common issue with T-12 bulbs.

Better Energy Efficiency

When moving from the T-12 sockets and bulbs to T-8 sockets and bulbs you will notice an improvement in electrical power used by the lights. The T-8 ballasts operate at a higher frequency, providing more light at a lower energy input. It is estimated that the difference can be as much as 10 to 12% increased efficiency simply by making the change.

It is also important to realize the 20,000 hours these lamps are rated on is the average number based on specific usage tests. These tests include 3 hours on and 20 minutes off, repeated over and over until half of the lamps tested have failed. This means, however, that half are still operational even under this unusual usage pattern.

Typically with T-8 sockets and lamps, the longer they are left on the longer the lifespan will be. It is not unusual for these types of applications to see a lifespan of up to 38,000 hours, which makes this an important conversion to consider.

To learn more about the T-8 sockets offered by H.H Fluorescent Parts, visit us online. We are easy to find at

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