Thread Number: 74611  /  Tag: Other Home Products or Autos
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Post# 984046   2/23/2018 at 22:48 (209 days old) by fan-of-fans (Florida)        

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One section of highway here had its cobrahead lights changed for LED. The restare still the orange sodium fixtures. Prefer the orange.

There are still some blue/green mercury cobras here and there on streets and parking lot. Most parking lots are bright white metal halide.

Not many streetlights in my neighborhood other than power company rented yardlights. Most of these were the sodium bucket shaded fixtures. But as the bulbs burn out they replace them with little LED fixtures. Again I prefered the sodium. Out of four lights on my street that are used only one is sodium. There are still a lot of sodium buckets in my neighborhood and even some mercury vapor.

My old neighbor had two sodium buckets which i thought was too bright IMO. They stopped paying though so the Poco shut them off. The one closest to my house had the bulb removed for some reason but later the Poco removed it completely when they did some work on the pole. The other fixture is still on its dedicated pole toward the middle of the yard and still has the bulb. But the new owners haven't had the Poco use it.

One house on my street has two huge sodium floodlights, but they are rarely on. Another has what looks like quartz floods over the tennis court but never seen them used or the tennis courts.

I like the old radial wave streetlights with just a bulb underneath the shade. One building here has new ones mountedon it and the historic district got some with glass shades that look nice.

Most downtown areas have the fluted columns with plastic acorn globes and sodium bulbs. These are to replicate the old acorns that show in old photos, but 1950s-80s photos show mercury vapor Westinghouse clamshell lights. The promenade has the 5 globe fixtures that replicate the original ornate 5 globes from the teens.

Post# 984048 , Reply# 1   2/23/2018 at 22:57 (209 days old) by GusHerb (Chicago/NWI)        

When I was in northern NJ recently, driving around at night I noticed they still had many mercury vapor streetlights. They had donut shaped bulbs in them. Noticed a dull white light from them that I'd never seen before, apparently never seen mercury vapor streetlights. Then to my amazement I saw incandescent streetlights too...!!! Boy are some of those towns behind the times! I was just astonished. Those had to be no newer than the 1950s if not older.

Post# 984052 , Reply# 2   2/24/2018 at 00:58 (209 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

There is a section of Greenville BVD lit with the older HPS lights and another lite by LED-the HPS is the winner for sure!!!Esp in rain or fog.also the HID lighting still wins in "lumens per watt"Ceramic metal halide is the real winner here.the CMH lamps have long life-and the light is CONSISTEN over the life of the bulb unlike older Quartz pinched arc tube probe start lights.
"Donut" shaped lamps-this is most likely an induction light-these have a ballast that generates RF to feed small coils inside the lamp-Really these lights are a type of FLOURESCENT type lamp-they really cannot replace the point source light that comes from HID.I see them here in Greenville-Bojangles likes them for their parking lots-the metal halide they used to have was better-problem is the tax credits give the business owners if they switrch to the new types of lights-LED or induction wether they are better or not.

Post# 984063 , Reply# 3   2/24/2018 at 03:15 (209 days old) by arbilab (Ft Worth TX (Ridglea))        

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When your eyes get ~15yr older, what appears charming now becomes glaring.  I can't look in ANY direction outside at night without getting my optics singed.  And the dozen or so stars still visible in the metro photon fog a couple years ago are gone with recent repairs and construction.  New building nextdoor festooned with kW-equivalent LEDs slams my irises shut. 


Can't even look out the gawldang daggflabbed window, mercury bucket and sodium cobras that didn't use to work do now, thanks for nothing.  I take a dim view of intrusive, indiscriminate, inconsiderate lighting.  Like, why even HAVE night if you're just gonna do THAT to it?

Post# 984108 , Reply# 4   2/24/2018 at 06:19 (209 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

The problem----POOR FIXTURE DESIGN,IMPROPER INSTALLATION-Or badly chosen lights-ones that are too powerful for the job.The fixtures should be reaimed.Also the LEDS put out too much blue wavelength light that is offensive to vision.Again-most older HID was better.The glare bomb LED cobraheads could be fixed by putting the glass or plastic diffusers on them like with mercury or HPS.And use full cutoff lights in residential areas,PLEASE!!!That way they don't shine into your windows or your eyes while walking or driving on the roads.

Post# 984144 , Reply# 5   2/24/2018 at 12:20 (208 days old) by cfz2882 (Belle Fourche,SD)        
all "vintage modern"at my house:

-(2)"18 watt",1982, Verd-a-Ray low pressure sodium wallpaks-these things rock!Though rated "18 watts"fixture pulls 1 amp.
- 1978 Stonco 100w mercury,very nice mercury light from a ruggedized glass lens wallpak.
- 1981 GE 100W HPS pole mounted reflector.
-I have stacks of other ~mid-1970s-early'00s HID lamps that await deployment :)

Post# 984155 , Reply# 6   2/24/2018 at 14:29 (208 days old) by GusHerb (Chicago/NWI)        

You're right they probably were induction. They looked quite old and the light quality was crap. I'm used to everything being HPS and now LED where I live, and municipalities don't have ancient streetlights either. All the LED lights are owned by the utility.

Post# 984157 , Reply# 7   2/24/2018 at 15:11 (208 days old) by wayupnorth (On a lake between Bangor and Bar Harbor)        

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Most of the traffic lights have been changed to LED around here. Only problem is in a big snowstorm, they cant melt the snow and end up more of a hazzard.

Post# 984198 , Reply# 8   2/24/2018 at 23:43 (208 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

Induction retrofit kits are available if you want to convert an old fixture.If its and of the HID family-would just leave the light as it was.Now if they could put WARM color phosphors in the induction lamps,fine.And there is concern these lights could cause RFI.Old core-coil HID lights don't have that problem.

Post# 984227 , Reply# 9   2/25/2018 at 07:51 (208 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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I have an orange sodium light out back.  I just retrofitted an old mercury vapor light my dad gave me that wasn't working correctly.  disconnected the transformer inside, wired the Mogul socket direct and screwed in an LED corn bulb from Ebay...but it too is 5000k color.  Working nights for 26 years I have zero tolerance for bright lights hitting my eyes.

Post# 984294 , Reply# 10   2/25/2018 at 14:06 (207 days old) by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        

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The latest LED's look SO much better then any sodium light. The color rendering of the mono-chromatic sodium light is awful. Early LED's weren't much better but the phosphors in the current lamps are much more full spectrum now. The new lights I see here in MN look awesome to me almost all the time. LED's are outperforming discharge lighting in every metric (and are still improving), discharge lighting will do nothing but decline from here on out.

The most important thing as far as visual appeal and lighting effectiveness isn't the light source but is the design of the fixture. Perhaps here in this area we pay more attention to this but most fixtures are full cutoff and there is almost no glare from these, just uniform color accurate light. Bad fixture design no matter the source is the pits.

The next big thing that really needs to happen is to get motion sensors on building and parking area lighting. This is a huge advantage for solid state lighting as discharge lighting doesn't turn on well. This could have a huge impact on power used and light pollution and even act as an additional deterrent to suspicious activity.

Post# 984380 , Reply# 11   2/26/2018 at 00:12 (207 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

The better LED lights are the 3000-3500K ones-NOT the hideous 6000K "blue-white" ones-GE Evolve-or was "Devolve"that give the ghastly blue color-mercury is better!CMH lamps are the current Lumen per watt champions and give pleasant light.They run from electronic LF ballasts so they are efficient-can be more so than LED and don't cause RFI.Some LED drivers are "switchers" and can cause RFI.There are some GOOD and BAD LEDS out there-same as with HID.You can get instant Restrike HID-those are expensive.Lower cost is "Dual" tube arc lights-the other tube can strike if the hot one drops out.However both tubes can get blown if one has a catastrophic failure-IE MH.

Post# 984381 , Reply# 12   2/26/2018 at 00:16 (207 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

Another BAD thing for LED is there are no ANSI standards for them yet as with other types of lights.LED "bulbs" used and drivers have NO standards-and to make it worse some LED fixtures are NOT repairable-so if any part of the light fails the WHOLE fixture has to be replaced-Is this more "green"?

Post# 984399 , Reply# 13   2/26/2018 at 07:41 (207 days old) by askolover (South of Nash Vegas, TN)        

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Sure they are more in the more that fail, the more green the company gets $$!

Post# 984524 , Reply# 14   2/27/2018 at 00:03 (206 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

"Sure they are more green"-think you have something there!!!ANSI standards for LED lights would be nice-ANSI standards apply to other lighting equipment-why not LED.Would make things easier!

Post# 985297 , Reply# 15   3/4/2018 at 20:09 (200 days old) by cornutt (Huntsville, AL USA)        

A few years ago I stayed in a hotel in San Diego that still had low pressure sodium lamps in its parking lot. Hadn't seen any of those in years. At startup they were ruby red, transitioning to the typical LPS mono-hue yellow as they warmed up. At one time LPS were the most lumens-per-watt efficient lamps on the market, but the color did weird things to your vision.

Post# 985335 , Reply# 16   3/5/2018 at 00:30 (200 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

LPS is STILL the "best" in lumens per watt-but only because of their monochromatic yellow color.These lamps contain large amounts of sodium-so they can be hazardous in disposal.I have a LPS fixture in my lamp collection.The yellow is hard on eyes-it does work well with some surveillance cameras-so these lights can be used after a place has been closed.Only a few of these lights are needed for the camera to work from.So that would save on power.The normal lights would be used during regular hours when the place is open.Phillips-the major maker of LPS "SOX" lamps suggests breaking the lamp[s in a bucket then flooding them with water and watch the sidium show-remember chemistry class when you put a piece of sodium in water as a lab experiment?Was FUN!!!Phillips is slowly closing down their LPS-SOX lamp factories in favor of LEDS.Some folks really liked the yellow color!Some are suggesting making LEDS in the same color.Also LPS was used in gemology lamps for measuring refractive index of clear cut gemstones such as diamonds and cubic zirconia.Was a way of telling real diamonds from fake.

Post# 985454 , Reply# 17   3/5/2018 at 21:27 (199 days old) by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        

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So how many lumens per watt is low pressure Sodium at it's best? From what I see it is in the neighborhood of 150 or so. Commercial LED's are around 120 l/w and increasing rapidly. Phillips has bested 200 l/w and Cree is over 300 now. Granted these are prototypes, but the LED technology is in it's infancy and discharge lighting is at the top of it's development curve.

While LPS 'might' have slightly higher luminous efficacy compared to LED's it won't be around much longer for general lighting due to the horrible color rendering.

Post# 985463 , Reply# 18   3/5/2018 at 22:41 (199 days old) by wayupnorth (On a lake between Bangor and Bar Harbor)        

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There was a couple that lives not far from me that bought one of those on tv solar lights. Installed it on their detached garage and went on a vacation. They came back to find the light burnt to a crisp in their driveway and their garage charred. Naturally, they cant reach anyone at the as seen on tv company. Bad battery, who knows what caused it.

Post# 985475 , Reply# 19   3/6/2018 at 00:04 (199 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

Just that LPS won't be around much longer becuase the LPS lamp manufacturing plants are closing.Also Ceramic Metal Halide is another contender LED has to compete with-its like a horse race-one gets neck-to-neck with the other and so on.I use CMH at home and LOVE it!CHM is mostly used for indoor lighting.There are CMH retrofit-conversion lamps that you can use in HPS fixtures and ballasts-this give the HPS light the nice WHITE light instead of amber color light.The lamps are available from Philips and GE.Venture makes a pinched quartz arc tube conversion lamp for HPS fixtures.The conversion lamps area available in 250W,400W.

Post# 985545 , Reply# 20   3/6/2018 at 13:27 (198 days old) by cfz2882 (Belle Fourche,SD)        
Philips SOX lamps

The two '82 vintage LPS lamps I have still have their Norelco branded,made in Belgium Philips bulbs,but a new Philips 18W SOX I recently bought for a N.O.S.,1999 vintage fixture was made in UK and different design than the early '80s Belgium bulbs.My LPS fixtures are my faves-nice glare free light,high "coolness"factor and low bug attraction-though at certain times of year,large black beetles are one of the few bugs attracted to the deep yellow sodium light.

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