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Thread: Screw-in compact fluorescents

  1. #1

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    I was looking for a light to supplement the plants in my window, and I ended up getting a 42 watt 2600 lumen "warm white" compact fluorescent.

    I had a hard time choosing between this and a 19W "daylight, 6500K) CF, that only had 1100 lumens. I thought since there is only one light mounted above the window, it would be best to have more power, so the light could actually reach the plants.

    Do you think this is accurate? I tried every store I could think of, and there were no daylight bulbs above 19W, not even for higher than the $10 of this "warm" one.

    -Ben

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    Daylight bulbs are not generally found in hardware or big-box stores above 19W, and only Warm Whites are to be found in 42W-for the most part. I'm sure there are exceptions, however. 42W at close range of your plants has to be a bare minimum when considering the benefit to your plants.

    Your best bet is to purchase from lighting stores like www.abcbulbs.com www.topbulbs.com or even on Ebay there is someone who sells CFLs in 65W+ in 6500K coloration. The gentleman on Ebay has by far the best deal. He charges $9 per bulb for 85W bulbs.

    Here is the Ebay seller I buy my 85W lights from: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws....5958532

    Sam

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    Wow, that is an impressive bulb. It has properties similar to the Fluorex light I use on my terrarium, but looks tiny. Will it fit in a normal plant lamp type fixture?

    Also, I do not see any specifications as to the color temperature of the bulb. Is it 6500K?

    -Ben

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    One of the most surprising things about this particular bulb is that it has a very compact ballast. It has a standard medium base and will even fit into a clamp-type light fixture. Most 85W bulbs are too big to fit into a clamplight.

    The bulb coloration is 6400K according to the seller, and the coloration is comparable to my other 6500K bulbs.

    Sam

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    Another good place for bulbs: http://www.goodmart.com/product....ape.htm

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    Do you know if it is safe to use this 85W CF in a fixture only rated for 65W incandescent? Does it get very hot?

    It seems like only topbulb.com (other than ebay) lets you buy a single bulb (not a case).

    -Ben

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    Ben,

    ABC Bulbs: http://abcbulbs.com/Item.asp?ID=SL85-65K&my_ID=81537&afid=

    1 for $25.50

    Top Bulbs: http://www.topbulb.com/find....E_49368

    1 for $26.95

    THe first bulbs I bought were from ABC Bulbs. I liked them just fine, and in fact, I still have one running currently. I liked the bulb I bought from Top Bulb a bit better-smaller ballast, same approximate color temp and strength.

    My newest bulb is from Ebay, and while it's definitely not built as well as the other two, the price of it is enough make up the difference at this point. Maybe in a month or two I'll be able to give you a better idea as to the longevity of them. If you asked me today, I'd have to say that I'll stick with these bulbs as long as humanly possible as I can buy 3 of them for the cost of one of the other two brands.

    Proceed at your own peril when putting a stronger than rated bulb in a fixture. THe difference between 65W and 85W isn't very much in power. If it was rated for 20W and you were putting an 85W bulb in it, I might be more concerned. IMO, the CFL doesn't get anywhere near as hot as an incandescent bulb, and there shouldn't be any problem doing it, but YMMV.

    Sam

  8. #8

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    Thanks for all the help. I'm leaning toward the cheaper bulb too, especially since this is just meant to supplement sunlight.

    I originally thought that I could not hope for a bulb as good as the Fluorex (in output, not reliability), but you have definitely changed my mind.

    I had never heard of these types of CFs. Are they based on T5 fluorescent technology or something? I don't have much technical knowledge of fluorescents, but it is amazing that it can be as powerful as the enormous 65W Fluorex bulb in such a small form factor.

    Thanks again.
    -Ben

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