Federal energy legislation, such as the Energy Policy Act (EPACT), has forbidden the manufacturing or importation of most fluorescent fixtures that require T-12 lamps. T-12 lamps are inefficient and power-hungry. New fluorescent fixtures must now have T-8 lamps as they are more efficient and consume less energy to operate than other T-12 lamps.
Which type of fluorescent bulbs are you using?
A good way to tell which fluorescent lamp your facility is using is by determining the diameter of the lamps. The higher the number following the letter “T”, the larger the diameter will be. A T-12 has a 1½” diameter, a T-8 has a 1″ diameter. The most recent fluorescent lamps on the market are T-5. It measures ⅝” diameter and is the most energy efficient.
Cost vs. Efficiency
Cost is proportional to efficiency. The less efficient the lamp, the less expensive it is. With electrical costs being a central issue these days, you have to consider whether the fluorescent lamps in your facility are providing the best illumination and are the most cost effective option. What you may be saving in lamp costs, you may in fact be spending in electricity and maintenance. All fluorescent lamps have a life expectancy of about 36,000 hours at 12 hours per day burn time. But, generally speaking, the more slender the fluorescent lamp, the more energy efficient it is.
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Give LMS Electrical a call today to find out how.