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how do you handle the 1141/1156 base?

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by David Gretzmier, May 10, 2010.

  1. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,645

    I seem to be getting more and more jobs that already have some lighting but want it to look better or right. The fixtures I'd like to talk about tend to be the nightscaping footliters or illuminators, tulip deliters, all of which use the bayonet base 1141's or 1156's. Although I'd like the deliter to be more "out" than "down", I really have no problems with these fixtures performance other than the bulb/base. even long life 13.8 volt versions of those bulbs seem to need replacement once, twice, sometimes 3x per year on those "on all night long" clients.

    I have changed out to bi-pin sockets on illuminators and footliters, which requires you to do some drilling with a step bit. time consuming, probably 15 minutes per fixture, but solves the problem and lets you use g6 bi pins for the rest of the life of the fixture.

    I have tried the adapter sockets, which goes in like a bulb and adapts it to a g4 or g6 bi-pin. many times these exceed the cost of a socket, but are quick to do, but most are rated only for 20 watts. I use 35 watts in paths probably 1/3 of the time. this would allow you to use bi-pins in the future, but you will still have the maintenance of replacing some of those plastic bayonet bases over the years that the adapter goes in .

    There are the halogen bulbs with the bayonet base, but those bulbs tend to exceed the cost of either a socket replacement or an adapter, and are the fastest solution, but I usually only find them in 20 watts, and that leaves you with a much higher residual cost every year on your end with yearly bulb replacements.

    I looked at several LED bayonet base bulbs, most are made for auto's, and I found 2 or 3 that actually publish lumens and color temp, will work for a/c voltage and those bulbs are the most expensive option, fast, and theoretically will not require yearly replacement. I have not tried these.

    of course, many folks knee jerk reation is tear it all out and replace it/warranty it with what you sell. I have done that as well, but it feels wrong to do it in many cases when it seems like a quality fixture, it is just a few years old and in perfect shape, it just needs to be wired properly and placed right and have a bulb that lasts a year. I feel better about the tear out thing if the customer is frustrated with the system and says they want something "good" but if the customer likes what they have and wants to just add on, tear out/replace really does not seem like good advice.

    what do you guys do ?
    Last edited: May 10, 2010
  2. emby

    emby LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 380

    David, I always believe that as a business owner you have to ensure that your customers are always happy. If they like the fixtures and want to keep them then I would explain to them that the maintenance on these fixtures will exceed the normal pricing due to the special bulbs required and short life span. Ensure you cover your time and material and look after the customer and make them happy. If that means quartely visits for maintenance then so be it.
    Modifying the fixtures with better sockets is sometimes necessary and a good idea but ensure that your costs are covered.
    Bottom line is I like what you do because you ensure that your customers are always happy.

  3. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    GE makes a long life 1156KR (krypton) lamp that I used to use a lot of. They give about 2000 hours as I recall, not bad for a $2 lamp.
  4. ELumin8

    ELumin8 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 59

    A phone call to the manufacturer if you are about to modify the fixture in any way as it may void the UL/ETL cerfitication as well as the manufacturers warranty/liability.
  5. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,645

    when you google 1156 warm white led you will get several websites selling many different versions, and one site worth mentioning review wise. it was an RV site and he reviewed several of the newer, warm white single contact bayonet base bulbs more geared toward the RV market rather than for brake lights. one gentleman tested 3 bulbs a few months back, and he was duly impressed with the color and brightness. I am surprised that there are warm white SCB bulbs out there with 250-300 lumen brightness. he basically said the 250 lumen version had a color and brightness similar to an 1156 bulb he pulled out, and the 300 lumen version would replace a fixture he had in his RV that had 2 1156 bulbs. one of those 2 was rated for both DC and AC with a range of 8v to 30v.

    sorry, I do not know how to post links. but I found it in less than 5 minutes of clicking.

    I have no experience with these bulbs, but I am going to try a couple on a pathlight compare them to 20 watt halogen and see how much light comes out. if they look ok colorwise and brightness wise, I may leave them in a year and see how they do at no additional cost to the customer. I am also going to try one with all the LED's facing out projector style on a tulip light and see how the color and light out the front goes.
  6. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    David, I can guarantee you that those lamps are not suitable for our applications. 1: They are not for humid/moist environments. 2: They post no spectral or photometric data. 3: They post no info on the junction temps and have no integrated heat sinks. So while they may make wild claims about lumen output, how are they dealing with the heat issues?
  7. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,645

    I am not claiming they do anything. I am saying a guy on another board tried them, and he liked the color and brightness. but one light did post a temperature/lumen rating at 25C?, and all were rated by color temp from 2700k to 3100k. I will try them like I have tried a hundred other LED's and let you guys know how they look and how they last. I'll be honest.

    And yes, I think all LED's should publish all the data, temps, color, junction temp, photometrics, heatsink volume and material, etc, but it is funny, how many of us have required the same thing of halogen bulbs? xenon/halogen blends? does anyone even know a junction temp of a halogen 20 watt bulb? or lumen maintenance?

    there are several SCB LED bulbs that are sold that look like a chunk of aluminum with sealed 1/2 watt or 1 watt led's sealed to it. I am just trying things out.
  8. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    There are five critical metrics associated with LED lighting. Lumens (light output), CCT (color temp), L70 (lamp life as a function of lumen maintenance), Junction Temperature, and CRI (color rendition index) It really is not possible to make a comparison between products, or a decision on the efficacy of any one product without knowing all of this information and understanding how the various metrics correlate. Steps are being taken to standardize the labeling of LED products and I welcome it. Hopefully they will require all manufacturers to publish full and objective specifications.

    There is technically no such thing as a junction temperature for an incandescent lamp, as there is no 'junction" to measure. Similarly lumen maintenance is not critical in incandescent lamps as they tend to fail abruptly at the end of their useful life, not fade away over time.
  9. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,645

    and I think you make my point james. How many lumens does a halogen mr16 have, really? it rarely is published. what color temp does a halogen mr16 have? neither is standard or published, as is reflector life or lumen maintenance. and if you think an mr-16 produces the same lumens at 1 year/2400 hours or so as it did at hour one, you are not paying attention. and if you think a 10,000 hour mr16 titan or utra makes even close the same color or lumens as a 3000 hour GE you are mistaken as well.

    and you forgot beam angle, which I think is equally important on Mr's for both LED and halogen.

    I too would love to have all metrics published, but in the last 15 years, if we never got it for halogen, what makes you think it will happen for LED?
  10. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    David, sounds to me like you might benefit from a lamp tech. 101 course somewhere. Are you a member of the AOLP or IESNA? You might want to consider it as both provide members with excellent resources. It really isn't that hard to understand all the technical stuff, and if you are in the lighting field, then most of this stuff should be second nature to you.



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