Has anyone used T5 LED tubes?

Discussion in 'Indoor Growing' started by farmasensist, Jan 5, 2016.


    farmasensist Well-Known Member

    I have two T5 fixtures I use to veg, 4' long 4 bulbs and most have burned out, only have 3 bulbs left. I was thinking of getting some LED tubes so I won't have to replace the bulbs as often, use less power, lower heat, all sounds good. I don't think I've seen anyone else using them.

    Looking online, I noticed there are a bunch to choose from or very little depending where you look. Some have a ballast already attached, some look like they have the white powder coating the tubes, others you can see the indevidual led's, and they were ranging in wattage by quite a bit, then you have all the different colors. I just wanted to see if anyone has any experience or helpful advice before I place an order.
    714steadyeddie, Figgy and az2000 like this.

    az2000 Well-Known Member

    I would think the unfrosted would be more efficient, less loss passing light through a diffuser. But, the distance you run them at may make a difference. (If your grow space is short, you might need diffusion. It might depend on the efficiency/strength of the diodes used too.).

    The only tubes I've seen recommended are these Redbirds:

    I don't understand the topic of whether to use internal or external ballast/driver. (I think I would do external just so you have a more plug-n-play setup (replace tubes, not drivers?).
    farmasensist likes this.

    nevergoodenuf Well-Known Member

    With the diffuser on you should be able to grow the plants into the light without harm.
    personal lux

    personal lux Well-Known Member

    As far as LED strip lighting goes most 4 ft strip are 60-90 a peice. I'd suggest you stager some hortilux power veg t5s with a spectralux or equal brand of t5s.

    covert222 Well-Known Member

    I don't understand why your t5s are burning out so fast. You have really old wiring? The t5 usually burn forever

    BOBBY_G Well-Known Member

    our shop has high bay t5s installed in 2008 and havent lost a bulb yet. on 12-18 hrs a day. every t8 in the office has blown.... i think ballast quality has a lot to do with it

    farmasensist Well-Known Member


    I found these but they are $70 a bulb but they are also 30 watts. I remember seeing some idk 15-20 watt bulbs for less than $20. Not sure if they would be good for growing. I'm looking for just a bulb I can twist into an existing ballast and some of them look like they would bit then you start reading and it sounds like they need some rewiring.

    These aren't the exact ones from the link but look similar. The ones in the link were advertised as grow lights and were white. Couldn't see the chips.

    PetFlora likes this.

    farmasensist Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure what the internal or external is either. The site looks like its mostly indoor lighting for stores and stuff but I might give them a call they got the same area code as me, I like supporting local business.

    The flourescent bulbs I had came with the ballast and it was a floor model. Half of them lasted about two years. Thinking of it that way, it might just be easier to go to home depo and get whatever lights they have since I'll just be vegging with them.
    az2000 likes this.

    Figgy Well-Known Member

    Last edited: Jan 7, 2016
    Fevs and PetFlora like this.

    Team.Grim New Member

    Growlights.ca you'll find them under t5 retrofit bulbs they have 3 specs for 2ft and 4ft tubes, I just ordered 4 2packs of 5500k for 200.00cad in total. Our dollar is incredibly weak right now even after import fees and shipping you guys on the other side of the border can still save some bucks.

    I bought my t5 set off kijiji 6 months ago god only knows how old the bulbs are

    Looking forward to the reduction in heat and power usage. Will let y'all know what I think after a couple weeks of veg with them

    cherrycoke77 Well-Known Member

    I bought some like that, they reacted better to t5. But it's all what you wanna do

    Team.Grim New Member

    Which spectrum and what was your wattage draw on the bulb? I figured they won't grow as quickly but don't mind if I loose 20% of my rate of growth in veg for a 35% immediate reduction in that tents lighting costs. Still using them?

    nmibud Well-Known Member

    I use them for seedlings,they do not stretch much.I vegged under them for awhile, but it was too slow.I have moved up to cobs and mostly clones so I don't use them much anymore.

    PetFlora Well-Known Member

    I have completed a grow using a full set of TL LED tubes. They work rally well, BUT, ~ $70 x 8 there are a lot of really good/better panels

    Team.Grim New Member

    On the site I posted a link too you can pickup 8 for roughly 160-175 USD couple different spectrums to choose from

    PetFlora Well-Known Member

    but are they @ 30w

    Team.Grim New Member

    They are 36w. 19w reduction their spectrum report shows similar lumens to t5 around 3300-3400 on the 4ft 5500k bulb only one I looked at since I just need em for veg

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