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F32 T8's

> From: MMacG1167 at aol_com
> Subject: Useful life of F32 T-8 bulbs
> When it comes to most flourescent bulb types, the standard wisdom seems to be
> that they should ideally be replaced every 6 months or so. Is this the case
> with electronic F32 T-8's, or does the fact that they maintain much of their
> initial lumen power even at burnout lengthen their useful lifetime when it
> comes to aquatic plant growing?

I should really dig up the official spec, but from a description given by
a friend in the "the industry", the T-8's maintain their original lumens
three our four times as long as NO fluorescents, which would seem to imply
you can run them for two years with no problem.

(Of course a lot of us never replaced our NO tubes every 6 months anyway.  
But admitting that would be betraying the Fraternal Order of Fluorescent
Bulb Brothers, and we wouldn't get out kickbacks from GE anymore. :)

Personally, I tend to save money by "rotating" tubes.  When one burns out
over my non-high-tech tanks, I substitute a tube from the high-tech tank
and buy a new one for the high-tech tank.  Between this approach, and
using T8's, I feel pretty comfortable that I can keep tubes for three or
more years...

   - Erik

Erik D. Olson
erik at thekrib.com (fails? try eriko at wrq.com)