Replacing fluorescent lamp with LED

The idea if replacing fluorescent light bulbs with LEDs seems to become popular. There are different kind of products made for that purpose, some are good and some not so good. So I felt it was now good time to test this technology.

LED technology promises to reduce power consumption about 50% of fluorescent bulbs and your replacement period becomes 10+ years. Good promises if those hold true. Modern LED tubes are designed so that they can be just plugged in place of original fluorescent lamp

I have read that a plenty of low quality LED tubes hit the market, some that do not hold their promises and some even potentially dangerous. I think that it is now right time test this myself. My intention on the test was to see how see the LED tube replacement technology nowadays it and get rid of the lamp flickering (tube flickers when you turn on light). The possibility to energy was a secondary option because I live in Finland (cold climate) and the heating the house uses electrical heating, meaning that I would really get energy saving on some summer months when the main heating is not used.

The lamp where I wanted to replace the bulb was in toilet. The first task was to check the power of the original tube and the socket type it used. For socket type identification Light Guide: Compact Fluorescent Lamp Identification was an useful document. The original tube turned to be 18W tube with G24 base.

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The replacement bulb I used was G24 13W 52-5050 SMD LED Warm White Light Lamp Bulb (85~265V) ($20.30) from Dealextreme.

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Lamp specifications:
- Ultra bright high intensity 52-5050 SMD LED warm white light bulb
- Quality aluminum shell
- Power: 13W
- Voltage: 85~265V
- Color: Warm white
- Connector: G24

What I was first is that this bulb does have bare SMD LEDs that you can see on the front. There is no protective glass/plastic over them. The wiring to LEDs is visible, which seems to be a little bit frightening knowing that those wires can have mains voltage on them (unless the LED power supply is isolated which I quess it not). While bare wiring looks somewhat frightening, the product does not look to dangerous because you can’t in any easy way touch those wires. The LEDs are put so near each other that you can’t touch those wires with your fingers. And in addition to that this bulb will go to the lamp in the ceiling that has a protective cover on this. So electrical safety seems to be OK here.

The bulb worked well when just plugged on the place of the original bulb. No problems worked nicely. This worked well, and no more annoying flashing when light is turned on (fluorescent flashes few time before goes on, this one starts immediately). This bulb gives out equivalent amount of light as the original 18W bulb (looked the same and gave same lux reading with lux-meter on the front).

I did the light measurements with Mastech MS8209 multimeter with lux range front of bulb 50 cm distance from the lamp on the ceiling. When installed inside the lamp, the reading with original 18W bulb was 560 lux and with 13W LED that was 565 lux. The LED bulb itself gave 800-900 lux from 50 cm distance when measured outside the lamp (no ceiling lamp from glass between the LED source and meter).

The light distribution was a little bit different with the original tube and this new replacement, but not too different to cause problems on the application.

The end results is that G24 13W 52-5050 SMD LED Warm White Light Lamp Bulb (85~265V) is cheap and well working LED replacement for G24 fluorescent bulb. Installation is easy, just plug into place. Works as promised.

9 Comments

  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The G24 fluorescent replacement LED bulb has been in use for several months and it works well as promised. I am happy with it.
    Does well what it is supposed to do.

    Reply
  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Lumileds’ mid-power 5630 LED aims at office lighting
    http://www.edn.com/blog/PowerSource/41713-Lumileds_mid_power_5630_LED_aims_at_office_lighting.php?cid=EDNToday_20120409

    The Lumileds 5630 is Philips Lumileds’ first white, mid-power LED, targeting the office lighting space (troffers and tube lights) and other distributed LED lighting applications. A mid-power LED is one designed to operate at around 100-150mA, as opposed to high-brightness (HB) LEDs which are spec’d at 350mA and routinely go to 1A. Offered in the full CCT range from 2700K-6500K with a high efficacy of 110 lm/W at 100mA, the devices have a minimum 80 CRI, 82 typical. (The guaranteed minimum lumens at 100mA is 26lm; 30lm for higher CCTs.)

    Why are mid-range LEDs a good fit for office lighting? Office light is usually omnidirectional, such as you’d expect from a fluorescent tube. HB LEDs show up as an intense point source of light, which can be a distraction – it’s just not what people expect from their office lighting. Hence the softer, mid-power LEDs.

    Reply
  3. bel islive says:

    I really adore this subject and can’t read enough about it!

    Reply
  4. Nifty says:

    Dear,

    Can you send us your newest quotation of led tubes.

    Thanks & best regards,
    Nifty

    Reply
  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Sorry I can’t.
    I don’t sell those LED tubes.
    The article has link to the place I got mine…

    Reply
  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    This product has worked nicely for more than 1.5 years now.
    No problems. Seems to be solid product.

    Reply
  7. gratisseks says:

    This website looks great! Keep up this good job and please upload some more information like this!

    Reply
  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    NASA’s headquarters to change the LED lights

    lso, the large state enterprises have to save money. The U.S. space agency NASA administration to take their own headquarters to do their saving efforts by changing the lighting to LED based.

    Cree says that NASA’s Washington, DC headquarters in all fluorescent lamps will be replaced by the company’s CR series led lamps.

    Replacing the LED lights will save the head office lighting costs up to 52 percent a year, Cree says

    Cree says that its led lamps last 50 000 hours of service life (about twice as high compared to traditional fluorescent tubes).

    The new lighting installation represents of course a great deal of cost to NASA.

    Source: http://www.etn.fi/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=335:nasan-paakonttori-vaihtaa-ledvaloon&catid=13&Itemid=101

    Reply
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