T5HO Lighting Fixture - cheap, lots of light, easy install

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Review by brtech posted 02-04-2015 03:59 PM 3707 views 1 time favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
T5HO Lighting Fixture - cheap, lots of light, easy install No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I’ve hesitated to post a review for this, mostly because I wasn’t sure how long the offer on them that I used would last. It’s been nearly a year, so I’m going for it.

This is an 8’ fixture (actually 92”), that holds two lamps. So they are end to end, not side by side. The lamps are not included. Buy the fixtures here:

As I said, they have been offering these for at least a year, at this price. For $38 and free shipping, it’s a steal. They come UPS, and I’ve had 3 shipments with no issues.

Buy the lamps locally, at a lighting supply house. You should be able to select your color temperature. If you buy a bunch of fixtures, you can buy the lamps by the case cheaply on the Internet, but I got mine locally. I paid $5 each for the 54 watt lamps.

I used cords on mine, but they are set up for direct wire. Easy install – take off a couple of screws to drop the cover plate, screw them into the ceiling, wire them up, replace the cover plate, put on the end caps and twist in the bulbs. You could suspend these with chains, but the fixture is pretty flimsy when done that way – it will bend in the middle if you aren’t careful.

They are T5HO (HO= High Output) which is instant on, electronic ballast, high efficiency and puts out a TREMENDOUS quantity of light. You won’t believe how bright these guys are.

If you need shop lighting, this is the way to go.

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1066 posts in 3560 days

12 comments so far

View bobasaurus's profile


3618 posts in 3822 days

#1 posted 02-04-2015 04:45 PM

Wow, these are actually a really good deal. I’m just looking into lighting for my shop, might have to pick up a few. How would you say these compare to two regular fixtures (with 2x T8 bulbs in each)?

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View brtech's profile


1066 posts in 3560 days

#2 posted 02-04-2015 04:51 PM

A T8 is about 2800 lumens, a T5HO is about 4700 lumens.

If you compare 4 lamps T8 to a two lamp T5HO, then they are about the same, but bulb for bulb they are nearly twice as bright.

View Fallon's profile


95 posts in 3766 days

#3 posted 02-04-2015 05:18 PM

For the high output lights, you need a higher shop and mounting height. They are really bright, which is good if they aren’t hanging low where they are in your vision. If you have a lower mounting height for the lights, you end up blinding yourself to some degree.

I went with T8 bulbs as I don’t have much height in my shop. With the new electronic ballasts T8 bulbs are about as efficient (lumens per watt) as T5. The T5HO are definitely brighter though.

View brtech's profile


1066 posts in 3560 days

#4 posted 02-04-2015 08:01 PM

My shop is a typical 50’ era basement room. Maybe 9’ ceiling height (depends on what you are measuring as the ceiling isn’t finished. They are not at all objectionable.

I think that compared to what you typically, find these have a much better $/lumen and take less space.

The price for the fixture is just a lot less than you usually find.

Yeah, they are very close in lumens/watt. Two T8s are about the same watts and the same lumens as one T5HO

View bobasaurus's profile


3618 posts in 3822 days

#5 posted 02-04-2015 08:41 PM

I have about 8.5’ ceilings. Think that’s high enough for the bright bulbs?

I may well have to buy a few of these and get them mounted. It would beat my random T8/12 fixtures hanging everywhere.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View brtech's profile


1066 posts in 3560 days

#6 posted 02-04-2015 09:15 PM

Yeah, I think so.

Think about the fact that the usual comparison is two 2 lamp T8s to one of these dual lamp T5HOs. Those give out about the same lumens. The T8 light is wider, so the light is coming from a larger area. That’s the only difference in the glare sense.

But can you find T8 fixtures at $25 including lamps?

View NormG's profile


6501 posts in 3642 days

#7 posted 02-05-2015 03:36 AM

Sounds like they would be a great light source unless they are right on the area your are working on

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View TheFridge's profile


10859 posts in 2124 days

#8 posted 02-05-2015 04:03 AM

The 6 lamp hi bay with reflectors are awesome. No is installing metal halide hi bays anymore. At least I’m not.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

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Craftsman on the lake

3126 posts in 4076 days

#9 posted 02-05-2015 01:08 PM

check out 4 bulb hung ceiling units from a big box store. About the same price, nice light with diffuser.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View splintergroup's profile


3295 posts in 1860 days

#10 posted 02-06-2015 04:07 PM

Maybe I’m missing something here but the referenced light is for a typical 440 volt three phase industrial installation. Changing the ballasts is an option, but that would blow the savings. Did you install this in a typical home (120/240 volts)?


Sorry, I just checked the specs on the ballast and see they are rated 120-277 volt.

View soob's profile


271 posts in 1846 days

#11 posted 02-17-2015 06:17 PM

Home Depot sells T5HO 4-bulb 8’ strips for $70 that are very nice and come with name-brand ballasts. I have some and they’re great.

I would stick with the T8 though. The bulbs and replacement ballasts are much cheaper. Spreading around T8s would give better light distribution too. Less shadows.

View bobasaurus's profile


3618 posts in 3822 days

#12 posted 04-15-2015 10:08 PM

I ordered four of these fixtures and installed them a few days ago. Bright as the sun in there now, they work great. One of them did have a loose wire I had to re-attach, and another one was dented, but overall they were well worth the money. Bought a case of 25 bulbs online, as it was cheaper than buying 8 locally.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

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