It's not obvious why they banned 40 Watts but kept 32 Watts (which seems
miniscule of a difference).
Googling, I found this:
Why did US Department of Energy discontinued the T12 lights?
Here is a direct quote of the main reason:
"T12 light bulbs were becoming extremely inefficient"
Here is a second direct quote of the secondary reason:
"Polychlorinaed Biphenyls are used in T12 fixture ballast manufacturing"
Huh? Why would a T12 ballast use PCBs while a T8 ballast wouldn't?
Makes no sense to me. Does it make sense to you?
Googling some more, I find this:
The Case Against T12 Bulbs that Invited the Ban
Which says (verbatim):
"the conventional four-foot T12 lamp still consumes a whopping 40 watts
every hour. On the other hand, the more modern T8 lamp consumes anything
between 25 and 32 watts of energy in an hour."
So I guess the 8 watts mattered to the DOE.
SImilarly, it says "The T12 lamps are not long-lasting", but, since when
does the DOE care about how long bulbs last (especially since incandescents
don't last all that long either).
Now we get to the hazardous waste where it says "T12 lamps release toxic
mercury and PCB waste products".
Huh? Why would T12s release more of these than T8s?
Reading more, I think they are just making most of this stuff up.
This article lists all the stuff that was retired:
100 watt and 150 watt incandescent A-lamp – banned January 1, 2012
75 watt incandescent A-lamp – banned January 1, 2013
60 watt incandescent A-lamp – banned January 1, 2014
40 watt incandescent A-lamp – banned January 1, 2014
T8 single-pin fluorescent 8 foot slim and high-output – banned January
Most reflector lamps over 50 watts (except some 65W) – July 1, 2010
Magnetic ballasts for many standard fluorescent lamps – July 1, 2010
T12 fluorescent tubes 4 foot – banned July 14, 2012
T12 fluorescent tubes 2 foot U-Bend – banned July 14, 2012
T12 fluorescent tubes 8 foot (slim and high output)– banned July 14,
T8 with low CRI – banned July 14, 2012 (DOE changed CRI to 87 in April
PAR20, PAR30, PAR38 Halogen standard lamps (within 40W to 205W) –
banned July 14, 2012
So it just seems to be an "efficiency" thing since they all have different
On Thu, 03 Nov 2016 14:48:37 -0500, Jon Elson wrote:
Thanks for that update.
After reading a few of these articles, and after noting that the government
bans *plenty* of other bulbs (which don't have ballasts), the *real* reason
is just the energy efficiency, I'm sure.
I guess the write of that article I referenced needed more words, so they
went on about PCBs, but, that's not the real reason.
They even banned some T8 bulbs, for example. And Halogens. And incandescent.
So, it's all about energy.
R-12 is a fat tube that is now obsolete. T-8 is a newer version. Look at
the existing tubes to see what you have now. The ballast is under the
metal cover in the center.
Since you have the new tubes, put them in and see what happens. If it
works, great, if not, take them back. Let us know the result.
I called Feit Electric at their 800 number 866-326-2852 to ask what type o9f
ballast I have and the lady told me to read off what the old bulb said, and
the moment I said it was 40 watts, she told me I have a T12 ballast.
I'm not so sure what ballast I have because I put those replacement
fluorescent bulbs from Ace in myself, and there's no guarantee that I knew
what I was doing when I put them in, so, they could be a T8 ballast which
the lady told me was 15W to 18W.
I had brought an old bulb with me, as I recall, but there's no guarantee
that the previous owner didn't put in the wrong fluorescent bulbs either.
Anyway, she said the Feit bulbs I bought from Costco will work with either a
T8 ballast or a T12 ballast, but that they'll last less long with a T12
I told her that some of my four 4-bulb fixtures are humming and she said
that means the ballast is bad, and not to put the LED bulbs in those
She also said that if the LED bulbs flicker or don't go on, to pull them out
as that means they're not compatible with the fixture.
If the bulbs don't work, she recommended the Feit Costco item #1057373 which
is a $60 shop light 2 pack "linkable" set:
I guess what "linkable" means is that I can put the two of them together,
somehow, to look like one unit? (Reading the reviews, it appears that they
have a receptacle on them, so that's what it probably means, but the
reviewer wasn't sure, and Feit doesn't say what 'linkable' means either).
This review says T12 lamps have been banned (I didn't know that):
Looks like a standard T12 bulb. It's real easy to test though. Each "T" in
a bulb designator is 1/8th of an inch. T8s are 1 inch in diameter for
example. T5 is 5/8th inch etc.
LED retrofits are usually real stupid in practice as there's no point of
installing "efficient" lighting in an old shitty fixture. Running LEDs off
an old magnetic ballast is is just way convoluted. Ballasts die all the
time anyways and if they go, they're likely to take anything connected to
them with it.
The best move is get a new fixture. It will have a new electronic ballast
and will take better skinnier flourescent bulbs. It will be the best of
all worlds- cheap bulbs, no flicker and good colored qualities. LEDs can't
touch that, especially cheapo stuff at the discount warehouse.
The last ballast I replaced was in an 8 foot fixture that could not be
moved without messing up the ceiling. That was the only compelling reason
to just leave it alone, plus the owner still had supply of those bulbs.
Not sure where you obtain your info but LED lamps offer a wide range of
lumen output and color output and they don't flicker unless they are
cheap LEDs. The price of fluorescent tubes are increasing, even T8s
while LEDs are still decreasing.
As I stated in another reply, fluorescent lamps can last a very long
time if they remain on all day or use a program start ballast. The
constant on/off is what kills them prematurely. LEDs can handle the
on/off for years and their only problem is losing light output after the
manufactures lifetime claim.
That article lists:
- The package components yellow
- Thermal expansion & contraction cause components to crack
- Phosphor degeneration
- ionizing radiation
- Metal melting on the chip
- Whiskers shorting out traces
- thermal runaway
- current crowding
- electrostatic discharge
- reverse bias
These Costco Feit LED tubes are VERY BRIGHT compared to the fluorescent
lights. Maybe that's because the T12 ballast is "overdriving" them? I don't
know, but it's like daylight in the garage now with 12 of them lighting up
They cost $7 each, on sale, at Costco.
Googling for the price for fluorescents at Home Depot, for both T8 and T12,
a ten pack is 20 to 35 bucks, so, about 1/3 to 1/2 the price. Given the
fluorescents don't last as long (we hope anyway, that the LEDs last longer),
that's about the same if the LEDs last twice to three times longer.
So, I figure, roughly anyway, the price is (about) the same.
Energy, the box says, is about half, but let's assume that since I'm using
the T12 ballast on a T8 LED, that I only get about 1/4, but that's a bonus
This is a garage. They're on only when we use the garage which is a few
times a day for short periods of time (although the kids leave the lights on
all the time, so that's a factor).
I just learned what "program start" meant, and that's "rapid start", which
these fixtures seem to be. There is no "starter" in evidence anyway. Just
the ballast and the words "rapid start" on the assembly.
This is good that the LEDs can better handle the on/off as these lights are
in a garage so they won't be left on (except by mistake).
My main objective now, is to replace the bad T12 ballast with a T8 from Home
Depot, which will allow me to put the LED T8 lamps in that one fixture.
It will be an experiment, since the other three fixtures are T12 ballasts,
so, and one of them has four new fluorescent bulbs, so, I'm running this
experiment unwittingly for the four sets of fixtures (with 4 bulbs each):
1. 4 Fluorescent T12 bulbs on a T12 ballast
2. 4 LED T8 bulbs on a T12 ballast
3. 4 LED T8 bulbs on a T12 ballast
4. 4 LED T8 bulbs on a T8 ballast <=== I need to buy this ballast
Your package photo shows a lumen output of just 1700 lumens, compared to
around 2800 lumens for a fluorescent bulb. So technically it's putting out
Your old bulbs were probably dimming with age and giving off a bit more of
a "warm" glow. Your new LED's have a whiter light, which can make them
seem brighter when they really aren't.
In any case, as long as you're happy with the light output it doesn't
I probably am not as discerning as you are, and, we should remember, this is
a "garage" so, it's not a "reading light" or a "mood light" by any stretch
of the imagination.
So, for a garage, I can only safely say that the light output from four of
these LED T8 bulbs driven by magnetic T12 ballasts is far brighter and less
flickery than four T12 fluorescent bulbs which are a few years old.
Sure, I'm comparing old to new, but that's what I have to compare.
I don't notice ANY flicker, although I hear a faint hum, which is probably
from the T12 ballast being squeezed at 120 cycles per second.
It's certainly *white* light, far whiter than the (ols) fluorescents were.
The price was about 3 times what a replacement fluorescent would cost.
Over time, I'd be forced to replace the T12s anyway, so,
You are correct in that the brightness of LEDs diminishes from day 1, mostly
due to fundamental cracks growing between crystals, so the "lifetime" is
supposed to be to the L70, which is the point at which the LED is at 70% of
its original brightness.
You (and I) both need a *better* way to tell the quality of the lamp.
Take the T12 ballasts I have, for example, which are made in New Jersey.
That doesn't mean they're high quality, just because they're made in the
USA, does it?
There must be a *better* indicator of quality for LED lamps than just where
For example, is there *any* indication of the quality of the Costco Feit
lamps that I bought?
Here's the spec sheet, I think:
NOTE: Tomorrow I'll ask Feit for the LM-79 and LM-80 data.
What do you think about the quality of these Feit lamps, made in China?
Good point, in that they were made well enough to last for probably 30
No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No.
What you paid is NEVER an indication of quality.
I can give you hundreds of examples which nullify instantly that idiotic
argument. I've been having this argument for years, with many people, so,
please understand that it's not you that I'm upset with.
I'm upset with people who can't THINK about DETAILS, so they pick a SIMPLE
number as their indicator of quality.
Sure, price is a SIMPLE way to think about things.
So is warranty.
But neither is ANY indication whatsoever of quality.
Sure, some quality stuff costs more, but a LOT of things are overpriced
(e.g., lettuce at safeway, housing in California, HP ink cartridges, etc.).
None of those are high quality.
I agree with you that this so-called "spec" sheet was just marketing fluff.
But I had nothing better on the net.
That's why I asked.
On the one hand, you realized the "spec" sheet was BS, but on the other
hand, you make quality decisions based on a single nearly meaningless
number, simply because it's easy to do.
SO I'm confused by your advice.
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