Fluorescent lighting is a great way to get a lot of light output with
relatively little energy usage. Engineers kept pushing the limit on this
concept, and have produced a new standard fluorescent bulb; The Sylvania Octron
T8 fluorescent light bulb. T8 bulbs save even more energy and produce a higher
level of light output than original fluorescent bulbs, which are known as T12
bulbs. You can tell the difference between a T8 and a T12 by measuring the
diameter of the bulb. A T8 bulb will be 1 inch in diameter, compared to 1 1/2
inch for the T12 bulb. The T8 are far more energy efficient and operate on
an electronic ballast usually configured to run several variances of T8 lamps.
As with all fluorescent bulbs, they rely on ballasts inside of the fixtures
in order to make them work. Ballasts are available from Universal, Magnetek,
Advance, Osram Sylvania, among others. Almost all fixtures for Octron bulbs
come with ballasts already mounted and wired. The ballast is important because
it is specific for each type of lamp. You can't change from one type of
fluorescent to another without changing the ballast in most cases.
On a rare occasion there may be a ballast that is made for several different
types such as in the case of T8 lamps. Most of the time the ballast in the lamp
are matched electrically and so it's good to make sure the ballast you have is
the right one for the lamp you choose.
You can get these in almost any color you want including the
more desirable full spectrum light. The full spectrum has
special phosphors that give it a similar color to daylight or natural sunshine.
These are also available in the T8 fluorescent. It produces light the way our eyes naturally use it, giving better visual acuity
and reducing problems like eyestrain. But fluorescents can come in many
other colors as well and are identified by their Kelvin temperature. By definition, virtually all are full spectrum in that they contain some of all colors in their
spectral range. However, the term full spectrum is primarily used when referring to those lamps
that fall into the white to blue/white color temperature range. Color
temperature is measured by a term called Kelvin. 3000 Kelvin would be a warm
tone color, 5000 Kelvin would be a white color and 6500 Kelvin would be a
blue/white color. There are some of the older types of fluorescents
that don't use these terms but sometimes are called by a certain color such as
"cool white" or warm white". Those are the T12 variety and
could be retrofitted to the newer Sylvania Octron T8's.
With the advent of higher electrical costs, many businesses are looking for ways
to save energy with lighting. There are many choices in this area right
now and one of the most popular type of lamps are the T8 fluorescent lights
with matching electronic ballasts. This combination has been a standard for
saving energy and many times has electric utility rebates associated with it.
What makes him such a natural is that the sockets used for less efficient T12
lamps are exactly the same making it an easy retrofit. The very latest
enhancement to Sylvania Octron T8 bulbs is the eco-friendly design. According to Sylvania,
"Ecologic is a comprehensive program focused on addressing environmental issues
at all stages of lamp life." They go on to say that bulbs in this category "are
designed to meet the Federal Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure (TCLP)
criteria for classification as non-hazardous waste in most states." If you are
sensitive to the impact of hazardous material in the environment we live in,
then energy saving T8 bulbs from the Ecologic line are for you. If saving energy
while delivering minimum impact on our environment is your choice, then these
fluorescent bulbs are the right choice for you.
Saving energy is not the only feature of the T8 bulb. In addition to this, the
color rendering index (CRI) is better than T12 bulbs. CRI is the technical term
for the way a bulb makes colors look to the human eye. The higher the CRI, the
more subtle variations of the shade of color are seen. T12 bulbs were typically
in the 60-65 range. The T8 bulbs range from 75 all the way to 95. (100 is the
Remember that there are many types of fluorescent lighting, we describe some
of the most common used in commercial lighting here. There are also the
compact fluorescent type which screw into regular light bulb sockets and there
are the plug-in type which are used in many original architectural fixtures.
Whatever type you choose or have, you will be saving energy while getting the
most light you can for your money. We have a large inventory of
fluorescent bulbs for nearly every type of light fixture in the field. If
you need help identifying the bulb you have, our customer service
representatives can help you determine what you have.