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T12 Bulbs - Bi-Pin Fluorescent Tubes

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Still using T12 fluorescent fixtures in your office or warehouse? Avoid expensive retrofitting by stocking up on these fluorescent T12 bulbs.


Available in several wattages and sizes, T12 light bulbs are used in a wide range of fluorescent fixtures including troffers and wraparounds. You can identify which lamps your fixture is using by reading the code at the end of the tube. The first part of the designation code describes the wattage. "F" notes that the tube is fluorescent and the number following is the wattage. For instance, a tube labeled F40T12 will operate using 40 Watts. The second part of the code tells the diameter, with the "T" standing for tube and the number representing the diameter in eights of an inch. T12 bulbs have a diameter of 12/8 or 1.5 inches.

T12 bulbs come in an assortment of color temperatures. Lamps in the 3000 Kelvin range emit a halogen while light that falls between being warm (2700K) and cool (4000K). These lamps are commonly used in hallways, stairwells, and garages. 4000 Kelvin lamps deliver a cool white light shown to reduce eye strain while 5000 Kelvin light simulates daylight to increase alertness. These color temperatures are ideal for locations such as offices and warehouses. 6500 Kelvin T12 light bulbs produce a full spectrum light that is ideal for areas that lack natural light.

T12 Light Bulb Ban

As part of the shift towards more energy efficient lighting, the manufacture and import of most T12 light bulbs was banned in July 2012. Some T12 bulbs are exempt from this ban, including cold temperature lamps and bulbs with a CRI of 87 or higher. Existing stock can still be sold, but these lamps are getting harder to find as stock dwindles. It's best to stock up now while you can, though it may be time to start considering retrofitting your existing fixtures to use LED T8 lamps.

Not sure which color temperature T12 bulb to use in your fixture? Speak with one of our lighting experts today at 1-800-624-4488 for assistance.