Fluorescent Tube Brand Guide - LampShopOnline

At LampShopOnline we stock a number of T5 and T8 tubes from leading manufacturers GE, Osram, Philips and Sylvania.

GE Lighting Tube
  • Date established: 1892 in Schenectady, New York

  • Lighting products: GE manufactures LED and fluorescent light bulbs used in infrastructure, industry, retail, hospitality, offices and the home.

  • GE on LampShopOnline: US mega brand GE manufactures a range of linear fluorescent tubes that are suitable for all indoor applications.The T5 and T8 GE tubes are long life bulbs which provide superb quality of light in colour temperatures ranging from 2700k – 6500k.


Included in the range we stock on LampShopOnline are the Watt-Miser lamps, which consume 5% less energy compared to regular T5s but still give the same level of light output. These eco-friendly lamps can save up to 5.0kg of carbon dioxide each year. T8 Watt-Miser tubes save even more energy and use 10% less energy to run than regular T8 tubes.
You can find out more about the benefits of the Watt-Miser lamps with the detailed T5 and T8 datasheets on the GE Lighting website, and you can buy GE Watt-Miser tubes online here.


GE fluorescent light bulbs are available from LampShopOnline in T5 and T8 sizes, GE no longer manufacture T12 tubes since the change in legislation in 2012 when old-style, inefficient lamps began to be phased out. On the GE website there is a handy conversion guide to help you switch from T12s to more efficient bulbs. Alternatively LampShopOnline still stock T12 tubes if you are looking for a like-for-like replacement.
T5 GE tubes are available in 2ft, 3ft, 4ft and 5ft lengths and T8 tubes are available in 1.5ft, 2ft, 3ft, 4ft, 5ft and 6ft lengths. 
Yes, GE do manufacture LED replacements for fluorescent tubes which save up to 60% on energy when compared to regular tubes. You can read more about T8 LEDs from GE here and we stock high quality non-branded T8 tubes in a range of sizes at LampShopOnline.

Yes, GE manufacture daylight fluorescent tubes which give rooms a cooler, more natural light. You can buy GE daylight tubes from LampShopOnline.

OSRAM Lighting Tube
  • Date established: 1906 in Berlin, Germany

  • Lighting products: GE manufactures LED and fluorescent light bulbs used in infrastructure, industry, retail, hospitality, offices and the home.

  • Osram lighting: Osram manufacture a wide range of lighting solutions, including innovative headlight lighting. Osram uses its expertise to create fluorescent tubes that feature low-pressure gas discharge and cold spot technology, which enable the lamps to be manufactured with minimal amounts of mercury without compromising on light output.

  • Osram on LampShopOnline: The LUMILUX brand of tubes from Osram offer excellent quality of light while being extremely economical and are available in T5 and T8 from LampShopOnline. We also stock the LUMILUX T5 SEAMLESS which is up to 20% more economical than standard T8s and the LUMILUX T5 HO CONSTANT, which is a popular choice for industry applications and street lighting.


They are available in seven colours including Skywhite, Cool Daylight, Daylight, Cool White, White, Warm White and Interna. There is a complete guide to the colour options available from Osram here. Osram’s special T5 tubes are available in green, red and blue and are used in applications requiring lighting design with colour including hotels, night clubs, retail displays and advertising displays.

This will depend on the light fitting you have. Older light fittings require a separate starter to light up whereas modern fittings don’t need a separate starter. You can read more about starters in Osram’s guide, you can buy Osram starter switches from LampshopOnline for 4-65/80w bulbs and 4-20w bulbs.

LampShopOnline stock T5, T8 and T12s in a variety of standard lengths as well as the T5 short range which are 16mm in length and are ideal for use in shops, supermarkets and department stores. Although T12s have been discontinued, we have 5ft Osram T12s in stock which can be bought in bulk.

Osram do manufacture LED fluorescent tubes which provide potential energy savings of up to 68% when compared with a 5ft T8 tube. There is more information available on the Osram SubstiTUBE Basic here and you can buy quality, low price non-branded T8 LED tubes from LampShopOnline.

Philips Lighting Tube
  • Date established: 1891 in Eindhoven, Netherlands

  • Lighting products: Philips creates lighting solutions for applications as varied as roads and tunnels to factories and healthcare facilities. The company manufactures a huge range of diverse lighting products for the home as well, including those that use the latest LED light technology.

  • Philips on LampShopOnline: We sell Philips MASTER TL5 fluorescent tubes, which can be dimmed, and are a popular choice for offices, schools, shops, and public buildings. You can read more about these tubes here or buy them online from us. They are also available. We also stock 4 ft. Graphica Pro Philips 36 Watt tubes, which are specialist tubes with 98% accurate colour rendering, making them suitable for use in the print and design industries.


This will vary between individual models but on average T5 and T8 tubes will last for about 20,000 hours.

Yes, all fluorescent tubes contain a small amount of mercury, which enables the lamp to burn. Many lighting companies, including Philips, are investing in new technology which will reduce the amount of mercury needed for a light to work. Philips has reduced the amount of mercury in their standard T8 lamps to just 1.7mg, beating their previous low level of 3.5mg. You can find out more about how Philips is working on lowering the level of mercury in their lamps here.

Philips starters are available to buy online from LampShopOnline and cost as little as 30p.
However, with fluorescent lamps, the brand of the starter doesn’t matter. As long as the wattage range is within tolerance of the lamp in use, you don’t have to use a Philips starter with a Philips lamp.

Yes, the tubes are available in daylight white, which emulates the look of natural daylight. Other hues available from Philips are extra warm white, warm white, standard white, and cool white.

Philips also manufactures full spectrum fluorescent tubes, which offer perfect colour rendering, making them ideal for use when doing visual tasks. They can also be used to help people suffering from seasonal affective disorders.

LampShopOnline stocks a range of non-branded full spectrum tubes and you can find out more about the impact lighting has on health in our article, Lighting, Mood and Health.

Sylvania Lighting Tube
Date established: 1901 in Boston, USA. 
Lighting products: Sylvania manufacture lamps and light fixtures for the home, workplace and the automotive industry. The company launched their first fluorescent lamp in 1939 and are one of the few lighting companies which design and manufacture a full suite of lighting controls and accessories as well as bulbs.
Sylvania on LampShopOnline: We stock an extensive selection of T5 and T8 tubes plus starters and LED tubes from Sylvania. The T5 lamps are available in sizes ranging from 1.5ft to 4ft and the lamps are designed to last for around 24,000 hours. The T8 lamps are available in 1.25ft, 1.5ft, 2ft, 3ft, 4ft, 5ft and 6ft lengths and will burn for approximately 20,000 hours. Both the T5s and T8s are available in warm white, extra warm white, cool white, standard white and daylight white.


The safest way to dispose of any fluorescent tube is to take it to your nearest recycling site, often this will be your local council tip. It’s important to dispose of fluorescent tubes safely as they contain harmful gasses, including mercury, which can be dangerous.

It’s better for the environment to recycle fluorescent tubes as most of the parts can be reused. You can read more about recycling and replacing bulbs safely here.

Yes, we sell Gro-Lux by Sylvania in wattages ranging from 18W to 58W. These lamps are suitable for encouraging plant growth and can also be used in fresh water aquariums.

If you have any questions about the brands we stock or fluorescent tubes in general, please get in touch with us on  0113 333 9539.

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