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Re: Compact Flourescent Bulb and Ballast Life?

> If not, buy AH Supply. I have never heard of this problem
> with them. They do
> use instant start ballasts with their PCs which is not
> good for the lamps
> but since aquarium lights usually only start once a day
> it doesn't seem to
> be a problem. 

You will probably cut the life short by about 25% with an
instant start ballast, if you normally run about 3 hour
cycles.  Those are the kind of figures I've seen ballast
makers cite, anyway.  Longer than that, and other factors
overwhelm the "instant start" impact.  It all varies by
bulb brand and ballast, etc. of course, but that's the kind
of neighborhood we're talking about -- virtually no impact
if you're running 8-12 hours cycles.

> I have heard that the 96 watt PCs do not
> last very long but
> this does not suprise me too much. A long small diameter
> lamp like that on
> an instant start circuit is going to fail faster due to
> the very high
> voltages required to start the lamp. They would do much
> better on a
> programmed rapid start circuit. However, it sems only
> Panasonic makes that
> lamp and none of the other big lighting manufacturers
> make a ballast for
> that lamp so you do not have a lot of options for a
> replacement ballast.

I hadn't heard about short life for 96 watt bulbs, not any
shorter than the "advertized" lifespan which is about the
same as 55 watt PCs.  I've only been running mine for a
couple of years so I can't cite experience with relatively
early failure.

Scott H.

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