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#25381 - 05/06/03 05:30 PM 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
Electric Eagle Offline
Member

Registered: 04/20/02
Posts: 928
Loc: Alpharetta, GA
The other day we put a bunch of recessed lights in a house. The guys didn't look at the labels on the bulbs and some different type bulbs were used. Most were 120 volt BR40 65 watt, a few were 130 volt BR40 75 watt, The 65 watt bulbs were much brighter. I know the 130 volt bulbs won't put out 75 watts unless the voltage is 130, but the difference was huge, the 75's looked like 40's compared to the 65's.

Why was the dif that large?

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#25382 - 05/06/03 06:03 PM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
wa2ise Offline
Member

Registered: 11/29/02
Posts: 743
Loc: Oradell NJ USA
Light bulbs are much less efficient when run at lower than "nameplate" voltage. Where efficiency is lumens produced/watts consumed. The 130V bulbs will consume less than rated watts, and produce even less lumens than the ratio of reduced wattage would indicate. The main feature of 130V light bulbs is lifetime. The life of a bulb is roughly the ratio of (rated volts/operating volts)to the 6th power. That bulb at that firehouse is likely at a much reduced voltage.

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#25383 - 05/06/03 06:12 PM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
Bill Addiss Offline
Member

Registered: 10/07/00
Posts: 4193
Loc: NY, USA
wa2ise,

Just wanted to mention that I've been in touch with the "Curators" of the Bulb several times and they've assured me that it is on a normal voltage circuit. It was not even a (surge-protected) regulated one until recent years.

Bill

[This message has been edited by Bill Addiss (edited 05-06-2003).]

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#25384 - 05/06/03 06:27 PM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
stingray Offline
Member

Registered: 02/02/01
Posts: 17
Loc: Loomis, California, USA
When I used to do traffic signal work we always used 130v bulbs because of the life expectancy.

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#25385 - 05/07/03 06:50 AM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
wageoghe Offline
Member

Registered: 02/14/02
Posts: 24
Loc: Huntsville, AL
I can also vouch for longer life expectancy of 130V bulbs vs 120V bulbs. About 18 months before we moved out of our previous house, we got a new garage door opener. It went through bulbs ( 120V ) at a rate of about 1 per month. I tried regular bulbs, appliance bulbs, and garage door opener bulbs. After that we had the garage door opener guy come back out. He replaced the light socket ( although he didn't really think that there was anything wrong with it ) and recommended using a 130V bulb. I put one in and it was still going strong over a year later when we moved out. I had a similar experience in our new house. We got new garage door openers and the original bulbs burned out very quickly. After replacing them once with regular bulbs, I got some more 130V bulbs and have not had one burn out in over a year.

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#25386 - 05/07/03 07:29 AM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
SvenNYC Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 1685
Loc: New York City
The additional beauty of the 130-volt bulbs is that you can easily buy them from the dollar stores (four bulbs a box).

Cheaper than buying the name-brand bulbs from Walmart or K-mart (or wherever it is Middle-America shops at these days).

One of the 130-volt 60-watt bulbs that was in my entryway fixture died a few weeks ago after almost a YEAR and a half of heavy constant use.

Its companion is still going strong, supplemented by a similarly rated 40-watt (hey, it was all I had on hand at the time and besides, it's covered by a glass dish so who's gonna see! ).

[This message has been edited by SvenNYC (edited 05-07-2003).]

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#25387 - 05/07/03 12:00 PM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
kale Offline
Member

Registered: 11/08/02
Posts: 168
I have to throw my opinion in here. Use caution when buying lamps (bulbs) from the dollar store, I've seen import ones rated for 110V. They don't last long at all.

__________________
I know the 130 volt bulbs won't put out 75 watts unless the voltage is 130, but the difference was huge, the 75's looked like 40's compared to the 65's.
__________________

Remember, watts is a measurement of energy used, not the light output. Check the lumens on the package for rated light output, it does vary.

As I've heard it, the original reason for 130v lamps was to be used in industrial areas or areas close to the generating plant where the average voltage was somewhat higher, and that because of voltage drop, locations further out could use the 120v lamps, and it all evens out.

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#25388 - 05/07/03 05:12 PM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
harold endean Offline
Member

Registered: 02/16/02
Posts: 2244
Loc: Boonton, NJ
Kale,

That is my problem exactly, The transformer for my house is right outside of my garage. Plus I am the only one on the transformer. It puts out about 124-126 volts and the regular bulbs just don't last as long. I always use 130 volt. They seem to last a little longer.

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#25389 - 05/07/03 05:37 PM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
Bjarney Offline
Moderator

Registered: 04/10/02
Posts: 2561
Loc: West-Southern Inner-Northeast ...
The ANSI-standard acceptable voltage range usually contained in electric utilities' "service-conditions" fine print is around 110-127 volts at the meter.

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#25390 - 05/07/03 06:33 PM Re: 120volt vs 130 volt light bulbs
Bjarney Offline
Moderator

Registered: 04/10/02
Posts: 2561
Loc: West-Southern Inner-Northeast ...
Don’t overlook screw-based CF {compact fluorescent} lamps as incandescent replacements. Their lifetime seems very good and they are getting more price-competitive and closer to [traditional incandescent] “A19-sized” these days.

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