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Old 23-09-2019, 12:54   #1
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LED conversion issue

I have a burnt out fluorescent tube in my salon. F30T8/CW 30W (35 1/2 inches long overall, single bulb) There are two of these in my salon and I'm thinking about converting to LED, now that one is burnt out. I'm assuming that the power going to the ballasts is 12 volts. On the ballast it reads 10-15 VDC. When I shut the main breaker off (using 110 volt dockside power) the lights still come on.

So I'm assuming that the tubes are 110 volts and they are just dimmer since they are being fed with 12 volts. Am I right or wrong on that?

My question is, can I simply put LED replacement tubes for the F30T8, in the fixtures and bypass the ballasts? Or do I need to get 12V LED tubes the same size as the T8, ( if there is such a thing) and then also bypass the ballast?
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Old 23-09-2019, 12:59   #2
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Re: LED conversion issue

Do away with everything and connect the Leds directly to the power lines. These should be 12 Volt, otherwise you will have to pull new wires from a 12 Volt supply line and install a fuse.
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Old 23-09-2019, 13:25   #3
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Re: LED conversion issue

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Originally Posted by sailormed View Post
Do away with everything and connect the Leds directly to the power lines. These should be 12 Volt, otherwise you will have to pull new wires from a 12 Volt supply line and install a fuse.
So what's wrong with just buying new LED tubes and using the old fixture and just connecting the wires from the ends directly to the power wires, getting rid of the ballast?

Also when I'm buying the tubes do I simply buy 12 volt LED and stick with the same wattage of 30?
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Old 23-09-2019, 16:19   #4
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Re: LED conversion issue

Not wattage, Lumens for equivalent brightness. 30w of LED is kinda bright!
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Old 23-09-2019, 16:26   #5
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Re: LED conversion issue

I have been very happy with the bulbs from Marine Beam. https://store.marinebeam.com/

We have been using their led replacements and fixtures for a number of years with no interference with our VHF, SSB or AIS systems.

https://store.marinebeam.com/fluorescent-style/

Give them a look

Chuck
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Old 23-09-2019, 18:16   #6
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Re: LED conversion issue

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Originally Posted by Wood View Post
Not wattage, Lumens for equivalent brightness. 30w of LED is kinda bright!

Yep, the F30T8/CW 30W is generally rated at around 2000 to 2200 lumens so look for similar output from your LEDs.
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Old 23-09-2019, 18:37   #7
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Re: LED conversion issue

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Originally Posted by chouliha View Post
I have been very happy with the bulbs from Marine Beam. https://store.marinebeam.com/

We have been using their led replacements and fixtures for a number of years with no interference with our VHF, SSB or AIS systems.

https://store.marinebeam.com/fluorescent-style/

Give them a look

Chuck
Jacaranda
Mo'orea
Thanks for the link but looks like they don't have anything long enough. I haven't found any 36" T8 12 vdc tube type that long anywhere online so far. I agree about the wattage. I forgot to reduce so I'm looking for something between 8- 12 watts I would think.
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Old 23-09-2019, 18:39   #8
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Re: LED conversion issue

Also look for temperature color. "Halogen" is about 2800, "soft white" is about 3k. Any higher number than that and it's a really cold white light. It's like the opposite of beauty light.
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Old 23-09-2019, 18:42   #9
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Re: LED conversion issue

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Also look for temperature color. "Halogen" is about 2800, "soft white" is about 3k. Any higher number than that and it's a really cold white light. It's like the opposite of beauty light.

Most F30T8/CW 30W tubes seem to be 4000 - 4100 K
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Old 23-09-2019, 18:48   #10
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Re: LED conversion issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by chouliha View Post
I have been very happy with the bulbs from Marine Beam. https://store.marinebeam.com/

We have been using their led replacements and fixtures for a number of years with no interference with our VHF, SSB or AIS systems.

https://store.marinebeam.com/fluorescent-style/

Give them a look

Chuck
Jacaranda
Mo'orea
Chuck
We've been satisfied with most of the LEDs we've gotten from Marine Beams too. We did get 4 cabin spots that give off significant FM radio interference.
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Old 23-09-2019, 18:48   #11
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Re: LED conversion issue

Check this out:


LED Replacement for 18" 12v Tube Lights


"This is a 12VOLT tube. Some RV and Boat fixtures (Thinlite) use a 120v florescent tube light which uses a ballast that converted 12vdc to 120v to light the light. With this light you must eliminate this troublesome ballast and just supply the tube with 12v power, positive to one end of the tube, ground to the other. A simple fixture rewire is required. Do not install these into a 120v environment or they will be damaged the the warranty void."


And it's half the wattage of your existing tube.
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Old 23-09-2019, 19:02   #12
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Re: LED conversion issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by seatotaler View Post
I have a burnt out fluorescent tube in my salon. F30T8/CW 30W (35 1/2 inches long overall, single bulb) There are two of these in my salon and I'm thinking about converting to LED, now that one is burnt out. I'm assuming that the power going to the ballasts is 12 volts. On the ballast it reads 10-15 VDC. When I shut the main breaker off (using 110 volt dockside power) the lights still come on.

So I'm assuming that the tubes are 110 volts and they are just dimmer since they are being fed with 12 volts. Am I right or wrong on that?

My question is, can I simply put LED replacement tubes for the F30T8, in the fixtures and bypass the ballasts? Or do I need to get 12V LED tubes the same size as the T8, ( if there is such a thing) and then also bypass the ballast?
There are two types of Home Depot LED replacements. One uses 110 AC with the necessary circuits in the bulb to get DC. The other requires a ballast replacement for the correct DC to the bulb. If the replacement ballast says 12 DC out then those bulbs will probably work on your boat. Consider though the higher DC voltage while charging. This may be an issue. There are marine replacement bulbs also available. Try Marine Beam or IMTRA. These are PWM regulated and will function over a wide range of DC input, typically 11-32. We have several 10 bulbs. These are great.
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Old 23-09-2019, 19:02   #13
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Re: LED conversion issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by StuM View Post
Check this out:


LED Replacement for 18" 12v Tube Lights


"This is a 12VOLT tube. Some RV and Boat fixtures (Thinlite) use a 120v florescent tube light which uses a ballast that converted 12vdc to 120v to light the light. With this light you must eliminate this troublesome ballast and just supply the tube with 12v power, positive to one end of the tube, ground to the other. A simple fixture rewire is required. Do not install these into a 120v environment or they will be damaged the the warranty void."


And it's half the wattage of your existing tube.
Thanks for that link, 15W seems ok, but is 4500k going to be offensive? I have a sheet of white opaque acrylic about 1/8" thick about 40" long and 8" wide that is spaced out from the recessed fixture about a 1/2" acting as the cover or diffuser.
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Old 23-09-2019, 19:09   #14
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Re: LED conversion issue

Do yourself a favor and replace the whole fixture with a LED fixture as @sailormed says. Get the lowest temperature you can find. Anything above 2700K is offensive, bad for the eyes and brain and should be avoided.
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Old 23-09-2019, 19:28   #15
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Re: LED conversion issue

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Originally Posted by Pizzazz View Post
Do yourself a favor and replace the whole fixture with a LED fixture as @sailormed says. Get the lowest temperature you can find. Anything above 2700K is offensive, bad for the eyes and brain and should be avoided.
Sounds like a plan.
Thanks everyone for all the input and good suggestions.
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