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Username Post: I need advice about shop lighting.        (Topic#363994)
Andy J 
Poster
Posts: 58

Age: 68
Loc: east central Mississippi
Reg: 10-29-15
01-15-21 02:19 PM - Post#2812156    

I have a 30'X30'shop just finished and I need advice on how best to light the shop.It has 11'walls with 14' to the peak of the top,open ceiling.It has 2 south facing 10'X10'overhead doors,when sunny days and weather permitting,let in plenty of light to work by.As you know,not every day weather permits this and also I want to work at night,especially in the summer as it is hot as you know where here in Mississippi.

I was thinking of hanging a couple of fixtures from the roof ridge and use some fixtures I can hang on the walls that can be moved if needed.

I would appreciate if some of you could tell me your set up and how it works for you.

Thanks,Andy J



 




wagonman100 
Site Ambassador
Posts: 15021

Loc: Baltimore, MD
Reg: 11-27-04
01-15-21 03:27 PM - Post#2812166    
    In response to Andy J

I have a 24’X40’ garage and I have six 8’ fluorescent fixtures and my garage is very well lit. You only need the fixtures on the walls if you wind up with shadows from a light being blocked by a car. Depending on the way you orient the lights compared to the way you have the cars sitting in the space you can minimize the shadows. I was going to put a light in my one wall and mount a fixture to a stand. I was doing that to have light and the straight line of the light to do bodywork and check for ripples or waves in the bodywork. But I will be moving and that will wait ‘til the next shop is built.

After I bought my fixtures they came out with more efficient fixtures that put out more light, like LED lights. To me the LED light doesn’t spread out as much as fluorescents.

Jay
Friends don’t let friends drive Fords.

1999 Silverado Z71 4X4 extra-cab short bed
1983 Malibu Fauxmad - tubbed
1978 El Camino Kustomized
1972 Monte Carlo
1957 210 handyman wagon
1957 Nomad sport wagon
1957 Cameo Carrier


 
grumpyvette 
Senior Chevytalk Moderator -- Performance Subject Matter Expert --
Posts: 17607
grumpyvette
Age: 73
Loc: FLORIDA USA
Reg: 03-16-01
01-15-21 03:35 PM - Post#2812167    
    In response to wagonman100

http://garage.grumpysperformance.com/index.php?thr...

http://garage.grumpysperformance.com/index.php?thr...

http://garage.grumpysperformance.com/index.php?thr...



when I built my shop I installed 4ft long 4 bulb florescent fixtures about every 10 ft so on a 30x30 shop that would either be about 4 fixtures arranged in a square, or 9 arranged in three rows of three , where each fixture was 10 foot from the next one and 10 ft from any wall and I put a motion sensor dual light about every 15 ft so in your case in the center of each wall at about 8 ft height,
on my 80ft x 36 ft shop is three rows of 7 fixtures or 21 lights on the ceiling and about 8 motion lights on the walls


http://www.grumpysperformance.com/garage20.jpg

the combo of motion sensor lamps on walls and over head florescent fixtures makes the area easy to work in



IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!


Edited by grumpyvette on 01-15-21 04:32 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
65_Impala 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 4666

Reg: 12-29-02
01-15-21 08:19 PM - Post#2812180    
    In response to Andy J

I would use some lights like these.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Commercial-Electric -2-...

Put at least 4 in a square.

When putting up ceiling lights don't just space them equally. You use 1/4 for 2 lights. I'll try to explain. When putting up 2 lights in 30' width, divide 30' by 4. You get 7.5'. Put the each light 7.5' from a wall. That way, each light will be centered in 1/2 of the shop. In other words, The left light will light up 7.5' to the left and 7.5' to the right. Same with the right light.

If you space them equally at 10', then there is more light in the middle and less light around the edges. Each light is 5' to the center and 10' to the wall. Light is not spread equally.


You can make a sketch to see figure out how they should be spaced as you add more lights.

W-L--L-W -> 2 lights, 4 dashes so divide by 4.

W-L--L--L-W -> 3 lights, 6 dashes so divide by 6, 1/6th, 3/6th, and 5/6th to lights.

W-L--L--L--L-W -> 4 lights, 8 dashes so divide by 8, 1/8th, 3/8th, 5/8th and 7/8th to lights.

etc.

If you mark them out, a quick check that you have it correct is that the distance from light to light should be double the distance from a wall to a light.





 
kool53 
Member
Posts: 835

Loc: Mukwonago, WI
Reg: 06-18-04
01-16-21 08:00 AM - Post#2812195    
    In response to Andy J

Go with LED fixtures instead of fluorescent. Slightly more expensive but brighter so you can most likely get away with less fixtures. You also don't have to change lamps because there isn't any to burn out. You will occasionally get a bad "driver" (LED version of a ballast) but it's not that common and you usually find it right away where the fixture can be returned as defective. Those of us in the colder climates have always had to use low temp ballasts in our fluorescent fixtures but not with LED, they don't care what the temperature is. I work in commercial construction and we very seldom see fluorescents being installed anymore as they are becoming obsolete.

Jay


 
Andy J 
Poster
Posts: 58

Age: 68
Loc: east central Mississippi
Reg: 10-29-15
01-16-21 10:37 AM - Post#2812200    
    In response to grumpyvette

Grumpyvette,your forums are way cool!I have looked at your forum before but never noticed the stuff other than car related info.Even guns and reloading!I'm into that as well.

I got into the forum on shop lighting last night and before I knew it,an hour and a half was gone.A little information overload,but I learned a lot.I'm trying to keep it simple.The fan information was also helpful.

Grumpyvette,thanks for your response to my post.I'll be looking at your forums more often for certain.Lots of great info and good reading on there.

65_Impala,I understand what your are suggesting about the spacing.I was going to hang two fixtures from the roof ridge,but I'm going to use four fixtures instead.Thanks for your input.

Kool53,I'll be using LEDs for sure.I was a career fireman for 39 years and I went to several fires that started from florescent lights.They have improved them,but they are still a lot of trouble,ballasts going out,flickering,you know the drill.Thanks for your input,also.



Edited by Andy J on 01-16-21 10:50 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
bobb 
Super Senior Member
Posts: 5748

Loc: paradise
Reg: 09-05-03
01-21-21 07:54 AM - Post#2812530    
    In response to Andy J

1 would 1st paint everything inside white. more lights are better than not enough. if you have work stations you may want more lighting in that area.

70 L camino, grampa engine, g-force 5 spd, road rage suspension. Pray first before all else fails.


 
grumpyvette 
Senior Chevytalk Moderator -- Performance Subject Matter Expert --
Posts: 17607
grumpyvette
Age: 73
Loc: FLORIDA USA
Reg: 03-16-01
01-21-21 12:05 PM - Post#2812556    
    In response to bobb

http://garage.grumpysperformance.com/index.php?thr...

http://garage.grumpysperformance.com/index.php?thr...

most of us realize its advantageous to have better lighting in the shop and under the hood or under the car, head band lights and magnetically attachable lights have advantages, most of the ones you charge over night only last 3-5 hours, on a charge, so having the magnetic type you swap batteries in or drop lights that plug into a electrical outlet have some advantages, as do the really bright portable types that clamp onto a car or lift or can be adjusted on a floor mount bracket

https://www.harborfreight.com/215-lumen-magnetic-p...

https://www.harborfreight.com/1000-lumen-led-work-...

https://www.walmart.com/ip/LED-Headlamp-TSV-5 000-L...

IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!


 
Andy J 
Poster
Posts: 58

Age: 68
Loc: east central Mississippi
Reg: 10-29-15
01-21-21 04:55 PM - Post#2812575    
    In response to bobb

Bobb,My shop is a metal building that is open to the roof.There is white insulation under the roof and on the walls so I'm in good shape in that area.I have a work table with wheels on it so I can put it anywhere I have room.I have plenty of portable lights also.The light fixtures I have chosen light the shop up like the sun.

Grumpyvette,I do use those little head lights and they are wonderful.Hands-free and it shines right where I'm looking.

I'm putting up my 2 post lift Saturday and then I'll get on the lights.

Thank you everyone who offered suggestions on the lighting.I hope you all are still out there when I get on my '52 Bel Aire.I'm probably a year away from finishing my '51 Pontiac Chieftain,maybe sooner if I work a little faster.When my grandchildren come over,they come first.Everything is on hold when they are here.



 
65_Impala 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 4666

Reg: 12-29-02
01-21-21 06:51 PM - Post#2812586    
    In response to Andy J

This is a really good work light. Small and bright and the magnet is strong enough you'll never knock it off where you stick it. We bought a bunch of the older version to use at work and they have been in use for almost 3 years now and get used almost every day and they still work and the battery life is still good. On high they last a solid 4-5 hours and on the 2nd brightest will last a work day. The only negative is that the ends come loose but everyone just taped or tie-wrapped them back on.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07BL5KJ3Y /ref=o...





 
wagonman100 
Site Ambassador
Posts: 15021

Loc: Baltimore, MD
Reg: 11-27-04
01-21-21 07:44 PM - Post#2812591    
    In response to Andy J

  • Andy J Said:
When my grandchildren come over,they come first.Everything is on hold when they are here.



Sounds like time to teach the grandkids how to work on the car. They get knowledge, you get free labor and you all spend time with loved ones.


Jay
Friends don’t let friends drive Fords.

1999 Silverado Z71 4X4 extra-cab short bed
1983 Malibu Fauxmad - tubbed
1978 El Camino Kustomized
1972 Monte Carlo
1957 210 handyman wagon
1957 Nomad sport wagon
1957 Cameo Carrier


 
Andy J 
Poster
Posts: 58

Age: 68
Loc: east central Mississippi
Reg: 10-29-15
01-22-21 06:21 AM - Post#2812614    
    In response to wagonman100

They are all girls.Maybe I can get my oldest daughter to help as she has shown interest in cars.One of her daughters may help if I can get her to put down her phone.Neither SILs have any interest in cars at all.Their ages are 14,13,and 9.



 
wagonman100 
Site Ambassador
Posts: 15021

Loc: Baltimore, MD
Reg: 11-27-04
01-23-21 07:11 AM - Post#2812715    
    In response to Andy J

Common problem even with boys. Not much interest in getting your hands dirty anymore. People would rather sit at a computer all day. There has been a push in the U.S. for decades for people to get a college education. And people listened. Now the blue collar trades are suffering. There is a serious lack of skilled labor in this country. And there is good money to be made in the trades.

Jay
Friends don’t let friends drive Fords.

1999 Silverado Z71 4X4 extra-cab short bed
1983 Malibu Fauxmad - tubbed
1978 El Camino Kustomized
1972 Monte Carlo
1957 210 handyman wagon
1957 Nomad sport wagon
1957 Cameo Carrier


 
CowboyTrukr 
"10th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 4568
CowboyTrukr
Loc: Salt Lake City
Reg: 06-20-09
01-23-21 10:58 AM - Post#2812747    
    In response to wagonman100

Unfortunately, with that push to get a college education, there was a little guidance as to what the degree should focus on. Sadly we have too many out there with a degree in left-handed underwater basket weaving and six figures of college debt. It’s amazing that they will lend a 19-year-old kid $150,000 to go to college but they won’t help out the same 19-year-old kid to go to trade school.

If you know of anyone with an inkling of a desire to be outdoors and is not afraid of heights, please counsel them to consider the trade of being a power line worker. This country has too few of them, and the need is growing exponentially. Not discriminating against plumbers and electricians and HVAC, but the need is so great that the current and future energy demands require them.

Greg

‘01 Silverado 2500HD 8.1/Allison 1000 Xcab/LB
'00 Explorer XLT 4.0 SOHC V6 Auto
'95 K1500 Z71 EC Short Step 5.7L+0.040/NV3500 SOLD

"The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing" Sir Edmund Burke


 
wagonman100 
Site Ambassador
Posts: 15021

Loc: Baltimore, MD
Reg: 11-27-04
01-24-21 07:58 PM - Post#2812858    
    In response to CowboyTrukr

Not to mention our power infrastructure is woefully inadequate and needs repairs frequently. So the need for power line workers really is going to reach a state of emergency soon. They were busy paying power company executive exorbitant bonuses instead of reinvesting the money back into the company to modernize equipment.

Jay
Friends don’t let friends drive Fords.

1999 Silverado Z71 4X4 extra-cab short bed
1983 Malibu Fauxmad - tubbed
1978 El Camino Kustomized
1972 Monte Carlo
1957 210 handyman wagon
1957 Nomad sport wagon
1957 Cameo Carrier


 
Andy J 
Poster
Posts: 58

Age: 68
Loc: east central Mississippi
Reg: 10-29-15
01-25-21 10:23 AM - Post#2812890    
    In response to wagonman100

Got my shop lighting all figured out.I installed my 2 post lift this past Saturday and that had a bearing on where the lights on that side of the will be.I really appreciate everyone's input on this project.
Something I don't understand about our power company where I live.There is no where else to get your power from,unless you are off the grid.Yet,the power company spends bundles of money advertising on TV.I don't understand.



 
Bill K.b 
Senior Member
Posts: 4497

Loc: upstate NY
Reg: 10-24-05
01-25-21 06:38 PM - Post#2812935    
    In response to Andy J

My buddy has a warehouse with a garage stall and the lights in there are hung down the center in one row.

So when you're under a car you get zero light.

I would hang LED shop lights in rows on each side of my lift, along the edges rather than the middle, so they light where I am going to be walking most, or the bench or what have you - and I would consider mounting a couple on the wall where the lift is, so they shine under a car and give you some light to at least see before you step in that oil puddle or what have you.

Those who can, do. Those who can't, criticize it on the internet.

Driving 2002 Express 2500
2002 Express 2500 extended
1988 G20 conversion
1993 GMC 3500 dually

Plus cars for swap and sale
& yes, I once tried a frame swap on a 51 Chevy.


 
Andy J 
Poster
Posts: 58

Age: 68
Loc: east central Mississippi
Reg: 10-29-15
01-26-21 05:28 PM - Post#2813020    
    In response to Bill K.b

That's what I plan to do.I'll also have some lighting on the walls for body work and working on brakes.I doubt that I'll do any painting,just primer.As much as paint costs today,I'll leave that to someone who knows what they're doing.



 
CowboyTrukr 
"10th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 4568
CowboyTrukr
Loc: Salt Lake City
Reg: 06-20-09
01-26-21 06:23 PM - Post#2813029    
    In response to Andy J

Then there’s this idea:

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=led+l ights+ad...

Greg

‘01 Silverado 2500HD 8.1/Allison 1000 Xcab/LB
'00 Explorer XLT 4.0 SOHC V6 Auto
'95 K1500 Z71 EC Short Step 5.7L+0.040/NV3500 SOLD

"The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing" Sir Edmund Burke


 
65_Impala 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 4666

Reg: 12-29-02
01-28-21 08:56 AM - Post#2813129    
    In response to CowboyTrukr

Holy cow $269 for LED strips and a power supply you can find on EBAY for <$30 with some magnets attached to the strips and some wiring cable stuff to make it easier to install.



 
Maxbigblock 
Site Ambassador -
Posts: 2981

Age: 70
Loc: Stuart, Florida
Reg: 12-16-01
02-13-21 04:52 AM - Post#2814199    
    In response to Andy J


Lowe's has 4 foot LED shop lights for around $25. They are inexpensive and put out over 4000 lumens of light. I have only recently purchased one so it will take awhile to see how good they are.

Max

I'm originally from the ONCE great city of Flint, Michigan. The birthplace of General Motors, where A C Spark Plug was formed and headquartered, where the first Corvettes were hand built, and where my 1955 Chevy was made.



 
65_Impala 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 4666

Reg: 12-29-02
02-16-21 11:38 AM - Post#2814393    
    In response to Maxbigblock

With a 11-14' ceiling height you need way more light then a few 4' LED fixtures will provide so you'll end up putting up many of them and spending as much as you would buying fewer ~20,000 lumen hi-bay fixtures. You'd probably need 4-6 of them to get the same light as a decent hi-bay fixture. The plus side is that if you're willing to put up that many lights spread over the ceiling you wouldn't get as many shadows.




 
Andy J 
Poster
Posts: 58

Age: 68
Loc: east central Mississippi
Reg: 10-29-15
02-16-21 05:44 PM - Post#2814421    
    In response to 65_Impala

65_Impala,that's what I'm thinking.From what I read,high bay lights aren't recommended for ceilings below 15-16 feet.That's close enough for me.The cabinet shop I worked at had them on a 12 foot ceiling and they lit the place up very well.

Right now,I'm looking at heat.It was 14 degrees this morning,very unusual for central Mississippi.Damned climate change/global warming!I'm looking at a propane fired torpedo space heater.A buddy down the road from me has one in his 30'X45'shop and it works very well.



 
65_Impala 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 4666

Reg: 12-29-02
02-17-21 10:01 AM - Post#2814455    
    In response to Andy J

I wish I could get high-bays for the prices you can in the USA. I settled for 4 x 8' ~7500 lumen fixtures on my 20' x 20' x 12' high shop area, which still work OK but it could use more light.

I've got a 60000BTU Mr Heater propane torpedo heater and the fumes are terrible and it's loud to boot. The round tank mounted radiant heat ones work way better for fumes and no noise, but don't produce as many BTU. You can get a dual tank top setup and move it with you where you're working.





 




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