Fluorescent lighting (this post may save you a few bucks)

If your thinking about getting new lighting in your shop, look no further than fluorescent lighting.  Why use fluorescent?  That is easy, its cost effective to install, and efficient to operate.

I have seen it done a few ways.  I feel the direction that I took gave me the most light for my dollar. My shop is a 36 x 54.  Its all open space, and the ceiling is 10ft 6inch tall.

I put 4 rows of these light on 9ft centers.  The first row started 4ft 6inchs from the wall.  There are 5 lights on each of these runs which gives me 20 fixtures  in all (well plus 2 directly over the bench). So 22 fixtures in all.  I paid $9.99 a fixture minus 11%. The store had an 11% discount at the time.  A 10 pack of 40 watt bulbs is around $30.  This will tack another $6 onto each fixture.

Fixture  $10
Bulbs     $6      40watt T12
Total     $16

If we take this by the number of fixtures we need (22) this comes to  $352.   If you want your shop lit up, this is the most economical way to go. I seen one guy spend $89 bucks on a fixture that held 6 of the same bulbs I use.  His shop had a slightly smaller footprint and he needed 8 of those fixtures.  If he wanted to run 24 2bulb fixtures like the ones I ran, he could have gotten away with a  $400 setup, compared to an $800 setup.

The other reason I went this direction was maintenance.  If a ballast goes bad in one of these fixtures, I will not replace the ballast, I will just throw the bad fixture away and buy a new one.  $9.99 is far cheaper than a new ballast. Its a fact that if a burned out bulb is replace immediately after they burn out, the ballast will last longer.  Burned out fluorescent bulbs are the highest cause of ballast deaths in the United States.


Riding motorcycles and wrenching since my preteen years, I have moved from motocross to street bikes. Being a teen back in those days it was tough to get me off of the bike. Now days even though I am very busy being a dad I still have my weekends and go to the track to race and on occasion will do a track day or two.

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