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Shop lights - LED upgrade - looking for recommendaitons


NigelStu
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It is time to upgrade the shop from the old fluorescent tube lights to something better.  I'm down to 7 of the 10 tubes that are not burnt out (more expected in short order based on how many I replaced at one time years ago), and I'd rather spend money on improving the light output/coverage and reducing electrical costs than buy more tubes.

 

Preference is to change over to LED

Amazon has some really cheap stuff, quality/output concerns me due to low-low cost.  .BigAss Fans now has BigAss lights, which look awesome but are also $$$.  Ideally, I'm looking for something in the B.A.L. output range but pricing in the Amazon half of the spectrum and isn't going to need to be replaced for a while.  

 

 

So, who has used what?  

Brand, source, details (quality, purchase cost, light output, light color, etc.)

 

What do you like about the ones you have?

What don't you like?

 

 

 

 

 

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I just did my entire garage with 4 foot LEDs. The Shop looks extremely bright. HOWEVER; I do not like these things at all. The light does not reflect around near as much as the florescent lights do. Now, when I am working under the hood of the car, I have to use a shop light.

 

Having done some more reading, apparently the wave length of the light emitted by the leds does not bounce/reflect like other. When there is a shadow, it is a distinct cut-off shadow and no light bleeds into that area.

 

I don't really know how to explain it. I just know that I am going to change all of the fixtures in the shop. While it may look impressive when you walk in my shop, white walls, bright light, it is actually a pain in the a$$ to work in there.

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How tall is the shop?

 

I put 6 of these in my 14' tall 40'x60' barn and they do a great job. Waited till they went on sale and had the 11% rebate deal so I got them for ~$140 each. 

 

https://www.menards.com/main/lighting-ceiling-fans/indoor-lighting/high-bays-low-bays/lithonia-lighting-2-led-high-bay-light/p-1444438150017-c-1472133557087.htm?tid=-8346016089334531511&ipos=1

 

Apparently they are making a 4' long version now that is a little more than double the price. 

 

I still need a work light for intricate things in the engine bay and under the car but I feel that will always be the case. The instant on nature and low energy usage is awesome compared to metal halide or HIDs.

 

 

barn.jpg

Edited by bigusnickus
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https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01H4KU83W/

 

Hyperikon 90+CRI T8 tubes.  I have 44 of them in my garage, mounted in some old 4x T12 housings I got on craigslist.  They are incredible.  I gave a bunch of brand new fluorescent tubes and ballasts to the neighbor because the Hyperikons reveal so much more detail. All of a sudden subtle discolorations I never used to notice started showing up.  These lights make silver sharpie visible on sheet aluminum.   The chintzy marketing photo isn't lying - these lights make everything more colorful.

 

81RaNKBbtFL._SL1500_.jpg

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FWIW, I would suggest getting name brand  low bay or highbay lights. That stuff from amazon may seem nice but it is no where near as nice a true engineered LED light. The problem with the drop in led tubes is that they all have a built in driver to convert your 120V to xxDC. Once that driver is done, the bulb is done. Even though the LED's themselves are still ok. Even worse I have had to deal with some of these bulbs catching fire as a lot of these bulbs have counterfeit approval labels. So lord knows what your getting.

 

google low bay style led fixtures. There is a ton available. Low bay if you didn't guess are meant for low ceilings 12-ish and under. Price will be dependent on wattage mostly. 

 

I have been an electrician for over 15 years and I am now involved at regulator level for approvals on electrical products. Some of this LED stuff is truly crap. So please purchase wisely. Garage fires are not nice.

 

 

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So I was in the lighting industry for a lot of years and can clarify or add to some points above:

 

  • @KneeScraper mentions that the shop is bright but yet you can't see well.  LEDs are very directional (think a rifle or shotgun).  The old light sources (FL and incandescent) were not directional at all.  If you are making headlights, directional is a good thing.  If you want light bouncing all over the place so you can see under things, directional is a bit of a challenge.  The comment about looking for LOWBAY lights is a good one, because they will be designed to try to get the light going all over the place even if the ceiling is low.  If you put HIGHBAY fixtures in a low room, you will get awful results
  • The Lithonia lights mentioned in the post that links to Menards are decent quality.  That is a reputable brand
  • The Hyperikon products mentioned are typically good values as well.  The higher CRI is nice if you are doing detail work.  I try to get 90+ CRI.  Flourescents have awful CRIs, so if you are upgrading from them to LED and you even get 85+ CRI that will be equal or better than what you had
  • As noted, the T12 or T8 replacement tubes aren't as energy efficient as something designed for purpose like the Lithonia Lowbay, but if you are in a Michigan unheated shop you probably don't care because that inefficiency is kicking off heat for you
  • As noted directly above, don't buy stuff off of ebay that may or may not actually have UL approvals and CSA approvals.  Fire sucks - ask Justin if you need confirmation
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  • 2 weeks later...

I struggled with this and came up with 12 of these 2 packs. They light up my 40X60, 12' eave and 16' peak like daylight at night. I have skylights for day but turn them on when its overcast.

 

https://www.samsclub.com/sams/2pk-led-shoplight-4-ft-led-shoplight/prod20051839.ip?xid=cart_product 

 

 

20171120_162504.jpg

Edited by Jalapeno King
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Depends on what format your fluorescent fixtures are.  

 

We are retrofitting our single pin T12 and T8 8 footers with T8 Ebay LED tubes. We use the direct wire units which require minor rewiring to eliminate the ballasts.Not quite plug and play but close. 2 years 52 weeks a year 6+ days a week 12 plus hours a day zero failures so far............

Edited by Racedad
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16 hours ago, okkustom said:

  Hey dad what's the cost per light ? 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Single-Pin-8FT-40W-6500K-FA8-T12-T8-Fluorescent-Replacement-LED-Tube-Light-Lamp/301995907066?hash=item46505bd7fa:m:mB77ZendtspkIKT5E0eQzEg

 

11-12 bucks a tube if you buy in qty.........

Edited by Racedad
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17 hours ago, Racedad said:

 

This is the stuff you don't buy. They don't even have the approvals right for what they are advertising.

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4 hours ago, Mopar 4 Life said:

 

This is the stuff you don't buy. They don't even have the approvals right for what they are advertising.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/10PCS-8FT-36W-FA8-T8-LED-Tube-Light-UL-Fluorescent-Replacement-Lamp-8-Foot-6000K/172470754512?hash=item28280edcd0:m:mEXvvohZFK4zp-3pLGJ5g4Q

Do you think the UL label on these is legit? When we bought our first batch none were listed as UL. Now some are.

 

Many of the old magnetic ballasts we took out that were too hot to touch scare me more.

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If it does not advertise a hologram type "UL" or "ULc" on the bulb. I won't touch it. 

 

For the link you provided. I would guess they are counterfeit. As I don't see an approval on the lamp itself. 

 

The pic is what you should see on the lamp. It may not say portable luminaire but would say self ballasted or LED

IMG_0251.JPG

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As T8 fluorescent bulbs burn out in my garage, I’ve been replacing them with the “daylight” or brightest rated bulbs for the brand from Home Depot.  Philips and Slyvania have worked great.  Slowly replacing all the incandescent bulbs with GE.  I’m sure there are cheaper bulbs but these seem to work for me.

 

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17 hours ago, Mopar 4 Life said:

 

This is the stuff you don't buy. They don't even have the approvals right for what they are advertising.

What he’s referring to here is a growing trend where China produced products put bogus certification logos on their products.  The fcc logo and the CE mark they have there are both using the right letters but the styling is completely different from the real ones.  That is how they try to fool consumers without getting busted by the FCC or CE.  UL and CSA are what are most important in North America, and they aren’t mentioned here.  This company probably chose not to fake those because they are the hardest to fake.  Those certifications include a file number that is specific to your product and can be verified via google.  The ROHS logo looks bogus too, but since that really isn’t important from a safety standpoint (unless you plan to eat your lights or grind them up and put them in your well water) I would recommend ignoring that one.  

 

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