Most LED lights on the market today are made off shore. Logica has been going to China since 1989 and has established excellent relationships with the best, largest and most reputable independent companies offering the best warranties in the LED business.
The reliability of LED products has greatly improved as automation and the use of Chip on Board and Surface Mounted Technology components have replaced discrete LED’s. An LED tube lamp generally uses many individual Surface-Mounted LEDs which are directional and require proper orientation during installation, as opposed to Fluorescent tubes that emit light in all directions around the tube.
Most LED tube lights can be used in fixtures intended for fluorescent tubes and will work with T8, T10, or T12 tube designations. Some LED tube lamps are intended to be a drop-in replacement if specific appropriate ballast is used. We do NOT use or recommend any of the ballast compatible Lamps as the reliability is base on a compatible ballast. There are too many ballasts to take the chance that your ballasts will be compatible. So, all of our work is based on bypassing the ballast.
There are 3 distinct types of LED tubes available in today’s market. They are all very different and the prices are different. The problem is that all the lamps look alike and can be confusing to customers and subject to misrepresentation.
6 Things to look for
- UL or ETL Listing labels with a file number on the lamp. Without the mark of one of these independent testing agencies the tube will not meet the National Electrical Code and should not be used.
- Another mark to look for on the lamp is that of the DLC (Design Lighting Consortium). This listing shows that the lamp conforms to the US standards for LED lamps. It is usually required to get a utility rebate.
- There will be a listing on the label of the type and number of LED’s in the lamp. It will also show the beam spread and color temperature of the LED’s. This is the spec of that lamp. It will also show the input watts and the rated watts.
- The housing for the tube can be an aluminum back and a clear or frosted lens or it can be all plastic. Either is acceptable if they have the proper listing marks.
- The markings on the lamp should show the type of power that is required to light the lamp. See the types below for definitions.
- There may or not be a manufacturers name on the tube. This is because factories make lamps for many companies and each company can put its own label on the lamp. The proper information and certifications on the lamp guarantees that it is the same lamp.
Type A LED lamps
These LED tubes come primarily in four, three and two foot “tubes” as direct replacements for existing fluorescent lamps. They are called “plug and play” because they can be put into existing fluorescent fixtures and will operate with the existing ballasts. They are rated as UL Type A lamps.
We do NOT recommend or use these tubes because they only work with certain compatible ballasts and even with them, they are less efficient than direct wired lamps. Our goal is to achieve maximum energy savings and elimination of any maintenance or failures in the future.
Type B LED lamps
These tubes look like the Type A tubes. Type B lamps are for the retrofit or remodeling markets. They are used in new construction or where fixtures are being replaced. These lamps will NOT work with existing ballasts of any type. They require either new fixtures or the by-passing of the ballast in the existing fixtures.
Type C LED lamps
Products in this category employ lamp holders to connect to the fixture being retrofitted, they will not operate off the existing fluorescent ballast, and require rewiring of the existing fixture to replace the ballast with an external driver. The lamp holders are then wired to receive only the low-voltage electricity that is supplied by that external driver.
Typical installation of Type C LED lamps: Cove lights, soffits, clouds and other lighting positions where an external driver can be hidden from view. Suspended ceilings are another use, where large wattage drivers can be used to power many fixtures, ,LED strips or modules. These are particularly useful when wireless controls, (RF, Bluetooth, DMX or WiFi) are being used.
Magnetic Strips and Drivers to replace fluorescent tubes are the next generation of LED lighting for existing fixtures.
Please see the Instruction Guides for the LED Magnetic Strips and Magnetic Drivers.