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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Garage lighting

Time to improve the visibility out there. Any suggestions on some good ceiling fixtures? No not Home Depot/Lowes or such. Griot's has some that are appealing. Any others? Prefer ceiling mount, not suspended.

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Fluorescent Light Fixtures - Lighting & Power - In Your Garage - Griot's Garage

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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 01:16 PM
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I got very good fluorescent cold weather fixtures from Lowes.

My 2-car garage and loft are unheated and these start right up.

The trick is in the positioning/mounting. A fixture that shines only down isn't much help in some circumstances.

Copying what many shops do, I mounted mine at the ceiling/wall junction, shining out at a 45 degree angle. This floods the area with light.

I do have a couple in the middle of the ceiling shining straight down (here when I arrived).

Hope this helps.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 01:37 PM
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there are any number of manufacturers if want to spend extra money and get something a little more stylish ...i would say just go to your local lighting supply warehouse ... there are only 4 parts to a light fixture:
the bulb (you choose..)
the reflector - the science
the housing - the look
and for fluorescent/hid - the ballast.

starting in the cold and running quite are just a quality of a good ballast. i have very good ballast, in my "cheap home depot" housings... and i put very good color (not the cheap) lamps. that why when people see my garage lit up they saw "wow - this looks great!"

also consider mixing fluorescent with halogen spots if you want a "higher end, retail look". looks cool - assist with color, breaks up light patters etc...

groits - as usually is not forthcoming with specs or manufacturer of that fixture - i would hope for the price its "lithonia / copper" competitive in quality...

i would never have exposed bulbs in shop - i would assume a fixt. like that comes with (or you will get) plastic sleeves for the bulbs. i prefer full (lexan) fixt. covers

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 03:13 PM
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Here is what I did ----I used three 4 light sections( 12 lights total)

Easy install


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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fitfan View Post
and i put very good color (not the cheap) lamps. that why when people see my garage lit up they saw "wow - this looks great!"
which bulbs and from where? Thanks.


Quote:
Originally Posted by docjay View Post
Bob
Here is what I did ----I used three 4 light sections( 12 lights total)

Easy install
Installing is easy in almost any case. But, the 45 degree method I mentioned above spreads much more light than vertically hung fixtures. really.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 03:58 PM
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LED lights! We have them in the house and they are nice. Never any flickering, variety of bulb temps, and they put out a LOT of light. Disadvantage is getting a good beam spread can be hard, and of course they aren't cheap.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2012, 04:26 PM
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Check out Low Bay Metal Halide floods. I have two over my work benches inaddition to a battery of fluorescents on the ceiling. I had a lot of fluorescent fixtures up and white walls and ceiling but it was still hard to see small parts and do detail work until I installed those metal halide fixtures. They are usually special order items ( a friend who owns an Ace Hardware ordered mine for me) and the bulbs are a bit pricey but I've only had one fail in 6 years and I use my shop almost daily...Dave
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-09-2012, 06:20 AM
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I just put some lights in my garage. I only had three little light bulbs in it to start and while my garage is small 24x24 I have 16 foot celings. I went to home depot and bought 4 8foot t5 HO fixtures. They didn't sell the bulbs in store and wanted 11 bucks a bulb online. I found the t5 HO bulbs on 1000 bulbs.com for 2.73 a piece. They are 5000 lumens each, color rating is 5000K and the CFI is 87 I believe. I mounted the fixtures directly to the celing as I wanted as much room as possible for my lifts. It lights up the garage like crazy my friends are say its like a tanning salon in my garage now.

Hope that helps.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-19-2012, 05:48 PM
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I have a 3 car garage. My first time upgrading the lights I did half the garage with 4 of the 2x4 foot tube lights. They are ok, standard issue. But they do put off some heat when you leave them on for hours on end. I think each bulb is 40 watts, and I have 8 of them so that is 320 watts. I have seen the light switch get a little spark inside on some occasions when turning them on.

So for the next half I decided to try something different. I bought the little cheap light bulb holders like this



And then put CFL's in them. I installed 5. At 13 watts per bulb they produce alot of light, but have less power draw then just one of the 2x4 foot tube holder.

I might consider replacing the long bulbs with more CFL's. It was like $40 total for the 5 CFL installs. That included sockets, bulbs, bulk wire, wire connectors. Since the sockets and bulbs hardly weigh anything I just drilled holes in the sheetrock right next to a rafter so that one of the holes on socket screwed into the rafter. Probably doesn't comply with code.

For the connectors I used these little guys, made plexing out the wires to the other bulbs very easy.



The whole thing is a little ghetto I know
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-20-2012, 11:44 AM
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I installed track lighting in my 3-car garage last month. I have 6 strips of 4 lamps each. It's a mixture of halogen (good color and directionality) and CFL fixtures (more efficient and cooler). It has made detailing my cars in the garage much easier since I can use the directional light to check for swirl marks and other defects.



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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-20-2012, 12:03 PM
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Two words: Metal Halide.

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-01-2012, 09:50 AM
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Those track lights look VERY dim to me.

I don't see why Lowe's/Home Deport, etc housings wouldn't be less better than some "designer" housings.

The lights I have in my shop were about $30 a housing, T8 bulbs. I have 7 housings in there for general lighting and then a few more over the top of my welding table/workbench. My garage is about 24x26 in size.
It's heater, but my shed out back isn't and the same lights work fine at -30*.

T8 bulb is 32 watts each, about 3200 lumens each. The 25w CFLs are around 1600 lumens each. Would take 4 CFLs to equal 2 T8s while using around 100 watts vs 64.

Metal Hylide works great if you have a tall ceiling. Usually 15-20ft or higher.
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