I've got an outdoor parking-lot fixture with high-pressure sodium bulb
that has burned out. The bulb is a 70-watt Sylvania Lumalux:
Can I replace this with something that puts out a more whiter light,
like maybe a metal halide bulb, or is the ballast in this fixture
specific and can only with with high-pressure sodium bulbs?
There are some specific MH lamps made to
work with HPS ballasts. But, there are
usually pretty expensive and are not as
efficient at a "real" MH lamp working
with a MH ballast. My old church was
built with 26 400 watt HPS fixtures. We
found 2 manufacturers (maybe even 3)
that made a MH lamp to work with that
ballast. It was a very pricey mistake
made by the archetect/engineer that the
church ultimately had to pay for.
It means that running a light fixture with a mismatched lamp/ballast
will do several things:
a. reduce lamp life
b. consume more energy for less lighting output
c. burn out the ballast
d. cause the lamp to catastrophically fail
If you want a brighter lamp in your fixture, you need to have a
qualified electrician retrofit your fixture with the proper ballast
which will support using that lamp in the fixture... If the new
desired lamp will even fit inside your fixture housing...
I took the transformer out of mine and rewired it to take regular bulbs.
I have a CFL in it that gives me all the light I need there. No
reason to light up the whole mountain. It still uses the dusk to dawn
circuit which has a relay so CFLs will work. Those original lamps do
put out some really ugly pink light.
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