If you are new to the world of lighting, you probably have some questions. T5 and T8 bulbs are commonly used in linear high bay lighting, vapor tight high bay lights, and strip light fixtures. When looking at T8 vs T5 light bulbs and making a buying decision, there are a few important things to keep in mind.
The major physical difference between T5 and T8 light bulbs is the length and diameter of the tube itself. The T5 tends to be slightly shorter than the T8 tube, and is significantly smaller in diameter. This factor is important to consider when looking at your fixture, because the two tubes are not interchangeable.
Another factor that separates T5 vs T8 bulbs is the lumen output capabilities. For example, a standard 4’ 54 watt T5HO linear tube will usually yield around 5000 lumens per tube whereas a standard 4’ 32 watt T8 tube will offer approximately 3000 lumens per tube. When considering this difference between the two tube options, it is also important to keep in mind the lighting application requirements of your space. If you do not need as many lumens, the lesser wattage T8 would be the better choice since it offers lower lumen and watt consumption. If you need higher levels of lighting, the T5 might be ideal for your situation.
When choosing linear fluorescent tubes of this type, there are several other factors you need to consider. For instance, both T5 and T8 tubes are available in various color temperature choices. This plays just as big of a role as the lumen output. For example, if you are considering a tube type for use in an office setting, you will naturally want to select either a lower lumen output, a warmer color temperature, or perhaps both, depending on the area. In office settings, using excessive lumen output or to cool of a color temperature can lead to complaints.
In an industrial or warehouse setting, we generally recommend a color temperature of 5000 to 6500 Kelvin. But in an office setting, something like 4000 to 5000 might be more appropriate. Additionally, T5 bulbs tend to be 2-3 times more expensive than T8 bulbs—so cost is an important consideration as well.
Check out the video above to learn more about these light bulbs from Warehouse-Lighting President James Abraham!
Get the T8 here: https://www.warehouse-lighting.com/products/philips-f32t8-tl741-alto-30-pack
Get the T5 here: https://www.warehouse-lighting.com/products/ge-46762-t5-54w-5000k-40-pack
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