What is a self ballasted light bulb?

Asked By: Rosena Burckhardt | Last Updated: 14th June, 2020
Category: automotive motorcycles
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The term “self-ballasted” simply means that the bulb doesn't require a ballast to manage the electricity flow. Self-ballasted CFL lightbulbs are self-contained and can be screwed in like traditional incandescent bulbs.

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Hereof, what is a ballasted light bulb?

In a fluorescent lighting system, the ballast regulates the current to the lamps and provides sufficient voltage to start the lamps. Without a ballast to limit its current, a fluorescent lamp connected directly to a high voltage power source would rapidly and uncontrollably increase its current draw.

Subsequently, question is, how do compact fluorescent bulbs work? CFLs produce light differently than incandescent bulbs. In a CFL, an electric current is driven through a tube containing argon and a small amount of mercury vapor. This generates invisible ultraviolet light that excites a fluorescent coating (called phosphor) on the inside of the tube, which then emits visible light.

Also question is, do LED bulbs need a ballast?

No LED bulbs require a ballast, although some are engineered to work with an existing ballast. You will find ballast-compatible, or "plug-and-play" LEDs that are designed to replace linear fluorescents, compact fluorescents, or HIDs. Incandescent and halogen lamps do not require a ballast.

Why CFL is better than electric bulb?

Advantages of CFLs CFLs are up to four times more efficient than incandescent bulbs. You can replace a 100-watt incandescent bulb with a 22-watt CFL and get the same amount of light. While initially they cost more, CFLs are less expensive in the long run because they last much longer than incandescent bulbs.

39 Related Question Answers Found

How much does a ballast cost?

A replacement ballast costs about $10-25 depending on capacity and brand. The bite is that an electrician trip charge (which includes 30 or 60 minutes work) is going to be $75-150 probably - for about 5 minutes work on each light fixture.

How do I know if my ballast is instant start?

You can determine whether you have a compatible fixture in seconds. Simply turn the light on, then take a photo of the fixture using your smartphone or digital camera. If there are no dark bands on the resulting image, you have an electronic ballast that will work with direct drop-in LED tubes.

What are the signs of a bad ballast?

If your fluorescent lighting is displaying any of the signs below, it could be a symptom of a bad ballast:
  • Flickering.
  • Buzzing.
  • Delayed start.
  • Low output.
  • Inconsistent lighting levels.
  • Switch to an electronic ballast, keep lamp.
  • Switch to an electronic ballast, switch to a T8 fluorescent.

Is an LED driver the same as a ballast?

The real answer here is that LEDs use a driver, which does many of the same things as a ballast but operates much more effectively. An LED driver is an electrical device which regulates the power to an LED light. It has the capacity to regulate power to a single LED Light or strings of LEDs.

How many types of ballasts are there?


There are two lamp families that work with a ballast: fluorescent and HID. And there are two types of ballasts in each family: magnetic and electronic. Magnetic ballasts are the older ballast technology. For the fluorescent family, both T12 linear fluorescents and two-pin CFLs use magnetic ballasts.

Is ballast and choke same?

An electrical ballast (sometimes called control gear) is a device intended to limit the amount of current flowing in an electric circuit. A choke is an inductor designed to have a high reactance to a particular frequency when used in a signal-carrying circuit.

Can you change fluorescent bulbs to LED?

There is a wide variety of methods for converting to LED tubes. The simplest is to completely replace old fluorescent fixtures with brand-new LED fixtures. “We do recommend that if the ballast in the existing fixture is 5 to 7 years old that you replace the ballast when installing the new bulbs.”

How do you bypass an LED t8 ballast?

In this situation the fixture would be retrofitted for non-shunted T8 LED tubes upon the completion of these steps.
  1. Turn off the power.
  2. Locate your ballast.
  3. Cut the hot and neutral wires.
  4. Cut the socket lead wires.
  5. Remove the ballast.
  6. Connect the input wires to the output wires.

Can you get LED lights to replace fluorescent tubes?

Many LED tubes are "plug and play", meaning you can just install them like you would a fluorescent bulb. For this to be true, look for bulbs that are "ballast-compatible" meaning that they can use the ballast already installed in your fluorescent fixture to power the LEDs.

Can I change fluorescent light to LED?


Type A LED tubes have an internal driver that makes it possible for the lights to operate on existing fluorescent ballasts. They plug directly in place of the existing fluorescent lamp. Super-easy installation – Just switch out the old fluorescent tubes for LEDs, and you're done.

How do I know if my ballast is t8 or t12?

This will reveal a lot about your current fluorescent tube and usually indicate if the bulb is T8 or T12. If no markings are available, the size in diameter of the tube is the easiest way to determine the type you have installed. T8 tubes are 1-inch in diameter and T12 tubes are 1 1/2 -inch.

How do you change a compact fluorescent light bulb?

How to Change Out CFL Plug-in Light Bulbs
  1. Allow the CFL to cool before handling.
  2. Grip the bulb gently by the ballast, not the glass part of the bulb.
  3. Pull straight up gently but firmly until the bulb pops out.
  4. Insert the new bulb.

What is better LED or CFL bulbs?

LED bulbs require much less wattage than CFL or Incandescent light bulbs, which is why LEDs are more energy-efficient and longer lasting than their competitors. The lower the wattage needed, the better.

Are compact fluorescent bulbs being phased out?


Monday morning, General Electric announced it will phase out the sale of compact fluorescent lightbulbs, the standard inexpensive option for the environmentally conscious. Instead, the company will give prominence to the LED, or light-emitting diode, bulbs – a better quality and more energy-efficient cousin of the CFL.

Are CFL bulbs safe?

Q: Are compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs safe to use? I heard they produce ultraviolet light and mercury fumes. A: These energy-efficient bulbs are safe when used as directed. All types of fluorescent bulbs contain mercury vapor, which emits ultraviolet (UV) rays when exposed to an electric current.

Do CFL bulbs emit blue light?

Compact Fluorescent Bulbs (CFBs)
However, they emit significant amounts of blue light, which interferes with sleep, so you should keep them out of your bedroom and other areas where you spend time in the evening.