Fluorescent Lighting For Cold Conditions


I am considering an addition to my garage and have started to think about what I would like to have for lighting when I complete the construction. Like most people I want a brightly lite area with low up front cost and low electrical consumption. Plus a system that works well in cold weather. This structure may not be heated at all times and I would like to flip the switch and have the lights to work instantly with out a major delay and extented flicker. I have been told that my best choice in fluorescent lighting would be 4 foot T-8's with high power ballasts?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

There are some fixtures that sate cold weather. OTOH, I just turned my shop light on at 15 degrees. It took about 3 minutes for them to reach full brightness, but they were plenty bright enough for me to find the snow blower.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

FWIW, I just finished installing the lighting in my new shop/garage and used 8' Lithonia 2-lamp fixtures with T-12 lamps.These were the cold weather type from Home Depot. There are 2 switched sections of 3 fixtures (main) and 2 fixtures (auto section) for a total of 1100 watts of lighting. They are mounted flush on a 9' white painted ceiling with no added reflectors. Quite honestly, this is the best lighted shop I have ever had and when switched there is no lighting delay at all. Even at $60+ per fixture it was money well spent. Your criteria for bright lighting and low cost/low power consumption are mutually exclusive. The free lunch adage definitely applies here...so go ahead and get some decent lighting, keeping in mind that the system isn't going to be on 24/7 anyway. The 8' fixtures are much more cost effective than the smaller ones. HTH
Joe
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Others have addressed the cold start issue. I'll add this: Garages are places where long-handled tools are sometimes handled with a certain amount of abandon, so they could end up having a collision with a fluorescent tube. Standing in a rain of glass isn't fun. So, when you're at the store, look for something that sort of disappears into the display: Plastic tubes into which you slip the fluorescent bulbs before installing them in the fixture. They work. They're cheap.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I replaced a pair of fluorescent shop lights in my garage a couple of years ago because of the problems with the cold. I was replacing the tubes at least twice a year (fortunately, 40W T-12 are a dime a dozen, so it wasn't a biggie, financially speaking). The new fixtures were really nothing special. They were advertised as having solid state ballasts and will work in temps down to -15. They use 32W T-8 tubes. They're instant on (hard to get used to at first), which means no starters. They're about 2/3 of the way through their third winter, and they're still doing just what they're supposed to be doing. And I haven't replaced a tube yet. They were only marginally more expensive than the standard, generic, low-tech models. As I recall, I paid about $10 for each fixture plus about $2 each for the tubes.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Lyle2254 wrote:

First you need to get over the low cost and high quality and proper function thing. The ones that work will not be low cost.
There are a number of possible good choices. You just need to make sure the fixutres are cold rated and you use the lamps called for. They will not be the cheepies.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

My shed has fluroscents, in zero temps lights didnt come on for long time.
So I added a few regular incandescents for instant on light.
Hopefully I DONT need in my unheated shed often in such weather. Its 16 by 20 I use it for storage
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote: ..

Good alternative.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.