LED replacement for fluorescent: bypass ballast?

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Old 09-17-17, 07:28 PM
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LED replacement for fluorescent: bypass ballast?

Just lost 1 bulb in a 4' two bulb fluorescent fixture. I'm considering an LED replacenent.

Easiest path is plug-and-play. But since I don't know how old the ballast is (6+ years, conservatively) should I remove the ballast and get two ballast-free LEDs?

The ballast is instant start.
 
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Old 09-17-17, 07:54 PM
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It makes more sense to remove the ballast from the equation.
I believe the non ballast type tubes are less costly too.
 
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Old 09-18-17, 06:12 AM
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LED bulbs are available to work with and without a ballast so whichever way you go make sure you get a bulb that will work. I would go for no ballast. When you get your bulbs make sure you read the wiring instructions as I've seen them two different ways. Some work by connecting power to both pins at one end of the fixture while the other type needs you to hook one wire to each end of the bulb.
 
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Old 09-18-17, 07:41 AM
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OK, went to the local Home Depot, and they only had one variety of bypass-type LED, and it was a color temp I didn't want, so I went with a Philips InstantFit, which is the plug and play type. Incidentally, the bypass lights were more than double the price of the InstantFits.
So, I put in the new bulb, and it has caused a loud buzzing on a nearby radio on AM.

I called Philips and they're saying it's a known issue, and there's a disclaimer (in tiny print on the box) about the possibility of radio interference. So I'm going to return it.

My concern is, if I did find ballast-free bulbs, is there something inherent to all such LED replacements, including the bypass bulbs, that would cause this problem?
 
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Old 09-18-17, 10:01 AM
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Most BigBox stores have an overpriced limited selections. Online you can find a better selection for around $20 each.
 
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Old 09-18-17, 11:55 AM
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My local big box home center has a pathetic selection of LED bulbs and they are crazy on their price. I have had good luck ordering from Super Bright LED's and also from Amazon.
 
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Old 09-18-17, 07:03 PM
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My main concern is whether or not I get the buzzing. A better price won't be worth it if it means more of that buzzing.
 
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Old 09-18-17, 08:52 PM
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I have no buzzing with direct connect $19 tubes. The ballast may be causing the buzz.
 
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Old 09-18-17, 09:33 PM
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All those LED tubes use high voltage switching supplies. Some may cause less interference but they will all cause some noise. LED's would not be a good choice if you need quiet AM reception.
 
 

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