Need to upgrade kitchen lighting - need more light

The two existing f-light fixtures in my kitchen each use two of the 24-inch bulbs - my 58-year-old baby boomer eyes need more light in the kitchen.
There are cool white, soft white and a bunch of other bulb types - what's going to give me the most light with the least impact on power draw? Should I just go with whatever bulb offers the most lumens?
I am considering replacing the two existing fixtures with two fixtures that'd each use two of the 48-inch bulbs. How much more light should I expect with the 48-inch tubes - will I see 2X the light I'm getting with the 24-inch tubes?
Is there a particular type of f-light (ballast, etc.) that will give me the most light with the least power draw? How much more power draw with the 48-inch tubes - 2X?
Right now, if I'm running a few burners on the stove, and running the dishwasher, and running the external exhaust fan on the stove-top, with the kitchen lights on, sometimes the microwave kicking off will dim the ceiling f-lights - so I'm trying to minimize any additional power draw.
Thanks.
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I would recommend replacing both 24" fixtures with 48" fixtures. I would also recommend new fixtures with electronic ballasts that use 32 watt T-8 lamps. These are the cheapest to operate and brightest standard fixtures currently available. Also, try to find something with a lens or cover that doesn't prevent the light from passing through.

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RBM wrote:

Second that last. Diffusers - covers - can cut the light by 50%. My kitchen came equipped with a recessed opening containing 3 - 100watt bulbs. I replaced that configuration with 4 - 40w florescent bulbs and changed the semi-opaque cover with a grate. Big difference.
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Just a citizen . . . wrote:

Power draw is determined by the ballast, the lamps just consume what they are fed, so if you don't change that, any tubes you install will have nearly exactly the same power consumption. You'll get the most benefit using something with a reasonable CRI, the modern trichromatic phosphors will get you up into the mid 80s and provide more lumens per watt as well. If you want the most light, install electronic ballasts with T8 trichromatic tubes, I upgraded my kitchen to that using F32T8/850 tubes. 4', 32W, T8 (1") diameter, 80+ CRI, 5000K color temperature, which is a nice cool but not icy daylight, the difference in brightness was amazing. You can get 24" T8s as well, but a pair of 32W 4 footers with the efficient electronic ballast they require will not use much more power than a pair of 24" tubes with a magnetic ballast, and they are a lot better regulated, have a nearly unity power factor (so less amp draw) and less effected by power fluctuations as well. As for how much light to expect, look at the lumens, but given that magnetic ballasts tend to under-run the tubes significantly, and that the high frequency operation of electronic ballasts results in zero flicker and more overall light, and taking into account the newer more efficient phosphors, you'll be looking at 3X or more light from pairs of 4' T8s than what you have already.
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"Just a citizen . . ." wrote:

As the others said, fixtures with the 4' T8 tubes will give a lot more light, however remember that if the fixture positioning is bad, brighter lights will only make shadows and visibility worse.
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Pete C. wrote:

That's a very good point. Under-cabinet lighting can work wonders, you might look into that.
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On Dec 12, 9:51pm, "Just a citizen . . ."

Light output is rated in Lumens and is stated on packaging, for efficency you compare Lumen per watt. 32w T8 electronic ballast is the way to go as others say. You can get much brighter bulbs than Warm- Soft White but they dont work well in a kitchen, you food will look bad !, grey meat wont make anyone hungry. A 4 foot dual lamp T8 electronic ballast will put out more than double of what you have and maybe only consume 50% more electricity. Look at undercabinet 15w T8 flourescent lights they equal 60w incandesant output and help alot to put light where you need it. HD has GE fixtures and bulb with plug in cord for maybe 9$ that I use in alot of kitchens. The Philips T8, 48" "Soft White" bulb in red packaging is a good bulb for color and efficency. You can get brighter bulbs but for a kitchen but stick to warm or soft white designations of about 3000k. For not much more electricity you can increase light output dramaticly. Dont buy the cheapest electronic ballast 4 ft fixture, they may not last.
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On Dec 12, 9:51 pm, "Just a citizen . . ."

Before changing the lights, stop and think about what you really need. It may not be so much that you need more light, but you need the exiting light in a different position. Or you may only need a little under cabinet light to boost the workspace.
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ransley wrote:

Low CRI is what makes food look unappetizing. The halophosphate tubes (CW, WW, D) have CRIs in the 50-60 range, low end trichromatics are 70+, better ones are 80+, you can even get mixed phosphor tubes with a 90+ CRI, but the efficiency is down significantly at that point. Spring for 80+ in the kitchen, regardless of the color temperature things should look ok.
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Thanks again for all the great information - I picked up the two new fixtures and 4 bulbs at HD this afternoon, per the specs provided by you guys - very inexpensive - I killed the power, took down the two older fixtures, put up the new fixtures, and now we need sunglasses in the kitchen - VERY nice being able to see clearly. And no one was electrocuted - a successful project.
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