I made the mistake of telling my father (an electrical contractor) that there wasn't enough light in our garage. The next time I went to work on the car, there was a light fixture hanging from the ceiling that would normally be found in Costco, Home Depot, or other huge warehouses! He took it to a Tim Allen level!! Other than the buzzing ballast, and need for sunglasses, it's great
As you explore options, the flourescent fixtures of VHO can function in cold weather. You might also find some of the shop lights at Home Depot that use a pair of quartz or sodium lamp (around $25). I have several in combination with FLOUR. They are good for light and cold, but do give off more heat. If the lights hang in a place where the garage door lifts up under the lights, it can cause damage or possibly fire, so be careful.
T 8 ballast with green tip tubes. No matter how cold they fire right up. I use 8 duel 4' fixtures spaced 3' from the walls around the parimeter of my garage too help with shadows while at the benches, with 4 duel 8' fixtures down the center spaced 4' apart,1 deul 8' across back wall. Having white sheilds on the fixtures helps with reflecting the light down as does having the walls painted white. Flouresent lamps come in different light hues from standard white to day light color giving a different light intensity depending on what ones you choose. No such thing as too much lighting in your shop.
I just installed those last week. T8, -20F ballasts and the green tip bulbs (110W each). I put (2) 8' double strips on each side (8 bulbs). Its a freakin operating room. The lights instantly pop on - quick ballast. I bought them at home depot. I have the model number if you want it.
T8 lamps use an electronic ballast to start and illuminate the lamps. Also very energy efficient. The T12 and T10 are the old school type with the magnetic ballast. With the right ballast they can be used in cold weather conditions. The two are not interchangable- you can't use T12/T10 lamps in T8 ballasted lights and vice versa.
Keep in mind for the cost, the HO, VHO, and HPS and other HID lights don't really give you the bang for your buck unless you have at least 20 foot ceilings. HO lights can be used from 12 feet up and VHO, HPS are designed for ceilings 20-36 feet in height.
Standard T8 with cold weather ballasts will work great in very cold weather but keep in mind not all T8 lights have the cold weather ballast. Some T8 are only rated to start down to around 50 degrees just like T10 and T12 flourescent lights.
If you have a lighting level in mind let me know and I can do the calculation for you. For a very well lit shop, you will need around 100 Foot candles at bench top level. For comparison, most office spaces are calculated for 70 Foot candles at desk height. Grocery stores are usually somewhere in the 100-120 foot candle levels.
Changed my mind and decided to do the quick calculation before I take off for the job.
You will need 5 columns of 4 lights- 2 lamp T8 type strip or industrial type lights (with reflector).
The 8' lights don't come with a cold weather ballast, but 4 foot lights can be purchased this way. Also, 2x 4' T8 lamps are cheaper than 1- 8 foot lamp so this is the way I would go if it were me and also how I do it for customers.
If you need the layout I can fax it to you. Just e-mail me with a fax number.
Timley subject - just finishing up drywall and getting ready for lighting. Follow-up/related question. Anyone know whether having a reflector on a flourescent strip light is really necessary when installed against a while ceiling at about 10'? I am assuming not. I ask because the fixtures at HD with the T8 balast that seem to accept 110v bulbs do not have a reflector.
Doing some searching online and finding an extensive selection of flourescent strip fixtures at Grainger. They have a 96" Lithonia strip fixture with a 12"-wide reflector that uses two 110w bulbs for $61.00. It is listed as having a T12 magnetic ballast that is rated to -20 deg F. Part #4LB83. They also have T8 fixtures and many other combinations as well.
p.s. I beleive their are Grainger stores in many/most areas of the country. I know there are two not far from me.
[ November 15, 2006, 02:43 PM: Message edited by: Matt Kennedy ]
Matt I used the reflectors on all my lights. I feel they do make a difference. 8' ceilings if it matters painted white same as walls. Same for the plastic lenses,the lights are brighter without them,just not as safe. The 8' lights I got at home depot but had to buy the reflector(also at h.d.) seperatly as it did'nt come with the basic fixture.
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