Frequently Asked Questions
Can I buy less than the minimum order quantity?
No sorry, we realise some people only want 2 tubes etc but this would be impossible to send via a courier without the items getting smashed. This is the reason for the minimum quantity - they travel better in numbers or a pack. The minimum order quantity for fluorescent tubes is 12, for sunbed bed tubes it is 8. Boxed quantity for T8 tubes is 25, Box quantity of T5 tubes is 30 or 40 depending on brand.
I can't find my bulb on your website, what can I do?
Email us the details on the bulb (manufacturer, wattage, measurements, all markings) and we will cross reference to find it for you. Why not send us a picture as well ...and don't forget to tell us how many you may need!
Can I pay by cheque?
What cards do you accept?
We accept Visa Credit, Mastercard, Maestro, Visa Delta, Mastercard Debit, Switch, Solo, Visa Electron, American Express, and ALL Corporate cards. We also accept Payment via Paypal. Transactions placed on our website are coded using a 128 bit SSL encryption key. Stripe provide and handle all card transactions. GB Bulbs will reject and refund any orders placed with differing Names / Billing / Shipping addresses.
How much is delivery?
The standard rate of £3.95 is a 24/48-Hour service (subject to stock) to England, Scotland, Wales, Belfast, Isle of Man, Scilly Isles, Western Isles, Shetland & Orkney, and Channel Isles. For Fluorescent Tubes, Par 38, or Light Fittings, the delivery charge is £6.50. Sunbed Tubes are sent on a private van at £9.00 per order, or £20 to remote locations. We operate a weekly delivery schedule for sunbed tubes. We do not ship tubes internationally - inc northern Ireland. We aim to fulfil all orders within 30 days. If there are any significant delays we will be in touch.
Why have my fluorescent tubes gone black at the end?
A fluorescent lamp contains wire coils, called electrodes or cathodes, at both ends and their purpose is to conduct current into the lamp. These coils are coated with an electron emissive material that enhances the release of electrons from the coils - especially during the starting process and less so during lamp operation. During starting and operation, the electrodes heat up and the emitter material on the coils is gradually evaporated. Some of this evaporated material will precipitate onto the wall of the glass tube near the coils. This appears as grey or grey/black deposits inside the glass at the ends of the lamp. Additionally, starters for these lamps must endure very severe treatment during the starting process. As these starters reach the end of their expected life - they can contribute to the stress placed on the lamps’ electrodes - thus increasing the rate of “end darkening”. For this reason, starters should be replaced regularly. A very good practice is to change starters each time new lamps are installed.
Do light bulbs and tubes have a shelf life?
No - lamps do not lose or gain potency as they sit on the shelf. In other words, they have neither the characteristics of bread (which becomes stale) or brandy (which improves with age). A lamp that has been sitting on the shelf for 20 years will be just as strong and effective as the same model produced yesterday.
Will dimming my lights save energy?
Yes. It will also double the life of the bulb for every 5% the bulb is dimmed - (incandescent/halogen bulbs).
What do the 'E' and 'I' in a triangle mean on my son lamps?
'I' stands for Internal Igniter. 'E' stands for External Igniter.
What does Average Hour Life mean?
For most lamp types, rated lamp life is the length of time of a statistically large sample between first use and the point when 50% of the lamps have died. It is possible to define “useful life” of a lamp based on practical considerations involving lumen depreciation and colour shift and also on the need to reduce lamp replacement costs. GE Lighting states the following 'Where Life or Average Life are stated we refer to the industry standard definition of how many hours of operation 50% of a given installation will exceed'