Fluorescent light fixtures nowadays are trendy decorative accessories that help balance the space. Stylish interior lighting emphasizes the basic elements of the home decor and has a big role in creating the atmosphere in any room. Many experts recommend the use of fluorescent lamps for three reasons. On the first place, lighting components in a full-sized fluorescent lamp have four times the capacity to convert electric power when compared to conventional incandescent bulbs. The lifespan of fluorescent lamps is longer and in addition, fluorescent light fixtures are one of the best options to light a functional area which is the reason why they are widely used as under cabinet lighting. The compact size allows you to install them almost anywhere. We shall look at the way fluorescent light fixtures work, their main characteristics, advantages and disadvantages and in the gallery below you can see different types of fluorescent light designs, panels for fluorescent lighting, modern fluorescent bulbs, etc.
Fluorescent light fixtures – how does fluorescent lighting work?
The construction of fluorescent light fixtures is quite simple. Electricity is supplied through electrodes into a hollow tube containing inert gas and mercury vapor. The lamp works by ionizing the mercury vapor in the glass tube. This causes electrons in the gas to emit photons at UV frequencies. The UV light is converted into standard visible light using a phosphor coating on the inside of the tube. The lamp is safe for the human eye. The glass prevents the penetration of ultraviolet radiation outside the tube. There are three main types of fluorescent lamps: cold cathode, hot cathode, and electroluminescent and they all use phosphors excited by electrons to create light. The size of light fixtures will determine the amount of light output – often, it is better to use two small sized lamps as they will produce more light than one.
Fluorescent light fixtures – advantages and disadvantages
Fluorescent lamps were developed back in the 1930’s and nowadays they are a time tested classic. Despite the fact that the market nowadays offers many modern lighting solutions like LED light, induction lights, etc., fluorescent lamps are the choice of a considerable number of customers. What are the major advantages and disadvantages of fluorescent light fixtures which make them so popular not only for industrial and office areas but for residential lighting as well?
One of the main advantages of fluorescent lighting fixtures is that they are energy efficient and a good option for interior lighting. They have a long lifespan, they are reliable and will function without interruption for quite a long time. The development in technology leads to low production costs, which makes fluorescent light fixtures less expensive than alternative options. In addition, fluorescent lighting offers opportunities for different color temperature – from cool to warm whites. The light is diffused, which makes fluorescent lamps suitable for general, even lighting and reduces harsh shadows.
On the downside we can point out that flicker of the high frequency can be irritating to humans and cause eye strain, headaches and migraines. The diffused light can be a disadvantage as much as an advantage as it is not good when you need a focused beam such as in a headlight. Low quality fluorescent lamps may create a fire when overheated and the many people find the flicker at the end of the life cycle quite irritating.
How to choose the right fluorescent bulb type?
Fluorescent light and fluorescent light bulbs are generally defined by the color and brightness the bulbs emit, the diameter and length of the bulb and tubes as well as the lifetime of the different types.
Fluorescent light bulbs come in a variety of shapes, lengths and diameters. Spiral shaped bulbs are the most popular type and give the same amount of light as traditional incandescent bulbs, but use less energy. A-shaped bulbs look like traditional incandescent bulbs but have a better efficiency. Globe shaped fluorescent bulbs as well as tube shaped bulbs are mostly used for bathroom vanity lighting, wall sconces, as well as ceiling pendants. Candle shaped fluorescent bulbs are an excellent choice for decorative light fixtures where the bulb is visible. Although not often used for residential lighting, tubes and circline bulbs are popular for industrial applications but will be a good choice for homeowners who would like to have a distinctive light.
Fluorescent fixtures in modern home interiors
Fluorescent light fixtures provide illumination in different colors. When you choose fluorescent lighting fixtures for your home it is better to opt for a “warm” light as the “cold” light is more suitable for industrial and office areas. However, if you want to create a special accent lighting you can choose from many other colors – red, blue, green – and use fluorescent tubes as decorative lighting. Fluorescent tubes come in a straight or circular shape, in different sizes and in a range of colors from cool white which is suitable for kitchens and bathrooms to warm white which has a yellowish tone and is suitable for living areas and bedrooms. Choose a fluorescent light fixture that matches the decor style of your home.
Fluorescent lighting can be used in any room of the home – living room, dining room, home office, home gym, kitchen and bathroom. In kitchens fluorescent lamps are mostly used as additional lighting and are installed under cabinets to illuminate a working area. However, if you choose fluorescent light fixtures for the bathroom, you need to make sure that they are safe and suitable to use in areas with high moisture levels.