When choosing lighting solutions, it is always helpful to have a basic understanding of the different elements of lighting. When it comes to the difference between T5 and T8 high bay lighting fixtures, there are two main things to keep in mind.
The first difference between T5 and T8 high bay lighting fixtures you need to know is the difference in size. For instance, a T5 is shorter and thinner than a T8 bulb. The diameter is also different with a T8 being bigger around as well. This factor affects the placement of the tombstones within the fixture. A T5 will need to have closer tombstones to accommodate the shorter length of the bulb than the longer T8 which can have more spaced-out tombstones.
The second difference between these two bulbs to be aware of is the output. The T5 will offer a more concentrated output of lumens, as well as a better spread of light ideal for high bay applications. While the T8 is a reliable solution, the spread is slightly diminished over the T5, which makes it better for low bay applications. Of course, the reflector will also play a role in the light spread. If you have a T5 without a reflector and a T8 with a reflector, the light spread may be much closer in comparison.
Another factor separating these two when choosing them for high bay applications is the overall lumen output. Lumen output is a practical way of measuring the efficiency. For example, a T5 with six bulbs will yield around 30,000 lumens total whereas a T8 with six bulbs will only yield around 18,000 lumens total. Of course, when choosing a high bay solution, you should look at getting the most energy efficient option without sacrificing on lumen output. The better light spread and the higher the lumen output versus wattage, the better value the fixture will be for high bay ceilings.
With a T5 high bay, you get a better performing option that will last for years when compared to the T8 option which doesn’t quite measure up fully to the T5 benefits.
To learn more about these two options, check out this video.
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