Fluorescent tube installation

I have these 8 foot tubes in my garage and two burnt out. These have a single pin at each end. They were hard to remove. I bought new ones yesterday with the correct single pin at each end and for the life of me, I can’t get the things in. I know there is a way and so last night I spent an hr.looking at youtube videos for how to install the tubes themselves and the only ones I found were the double pinned ones even I had searched for single pins.

So, I’m coming here looking for some sympathy and help……what’s the trick to putting these tubes in?

I don’t want to call the electrician to do this, I’d feel like a fool. I’ve installed the double pins before but not these things.

Lucky Dog

Not sure if this helps

If the lamp is a single-pin lamp, you will need to pull outward on the socket to release the contact pin and then pull the fluorescent bulb downward out of the lamp.



At one end it should just be a hole, but at the other there should be a round tube sticking out. That tube should be on a spring so that it can be pushed in. Start by putting the pin of one end in the spring loaded end and push until the other end can be swung into the fixed hole.

RH, that’s what I’ve been doing, pushing it end(at the end that depresses on the fixture itself) and I’ve tried it at both ends(placing the ladder at one end, the middle and the other end). I’ve applied pressure of course, but there is clearly something I’m missing.

How many people does it take to replace a tube light?


Probably obvious, but is the new bulb the same diameter as the old?
I’ve seen some youtubes listing to be careful of that.


Not sure how many of these lights you have but could it be a great time to switch to LEDs?


pushing it end(at the end that depresses on the fixture itself)
When you’re pushing it in, is the tube already inserted into that socket?

It’s been a while, but IIRC, I’d put the tube’s pin into that socket, push on the tube to depress the socket into the fixture, then be able to pivot the tube up to align with the other socket. Then the spring on the socket would push the pin/tube into place as I let go of the tube (slowly of course)

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Can you put the old ones back in? Not to function, of course, but to double check that the spring component is working properly. If it is stuck or jammed.

I always worry about breaking the new and sometimes try the “old” to make sure I figured out how it all works and that it does work. Helps to know what force is necessary.

Best of luck,


hope you made out ok with this -


Hi nag, thanks for asking.

No luck so far, I’ve tried every which way. I think what I will end up doing is going to an electrical supply place and take the old tube plus a new one and see if it okay. It’s the same number so it should. Then I hope they will demonstrate on how to put the things in.

As a side note……I had that garage built in the 80’s and this is the first time I’ve had to replace a light. I rarely use the lights, just going down there doing the day usually. They’ve lasted a long time what with the weather changes and all. It’s unfinished and unheated inside, I will run a fan if I’m in there for any length of time when it’s hot or to cool off from doing yard work.

I’ve been involving myself with taking apart stuff for scrap metal to take to the junkyard. Tedious but it really focuses the mind. :slight_smile:

I’ll let the board know what happens when I do something about the lights.

Lucky Dog

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So I just tried it on my fixture in the garage.
And if I push the bulb into the plunger tombstone (the connector with the springy part), it has enough clearance on the opposite end to come out of the other tombstone.

And to put the tube back in, I put one tube end into the plunger tombstone, push the tube to compress the spring/plunger, and swivel the tube up the ~1" so it lines up with the other tombstone when I slowly let go of the tube.

shows putting a LED tube in - but it’d be the same thing

BTW I replaced one of my 8’ fixtures with some LEDs on a flexible tape and a 24V supply to power them - and it’s much brighter for the same number of watts. And I relocated the light sources and switch at the same time which makes it more convenient to turn on/off, and got the light to be in front of the shelves instead of directly above them.

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If all else fails, when I had a twin 8 ft fluorescent fixtures to deal with I didn’t want to perpetuate the 8 ft tubes. The whole thing came down, and where the box appeared when it was down went one of these:


Today I would look to fill it with something like:


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Gosh, he makes it look so easy to push the bulb in…that’s how it should be, but it’s not. I’m going to look at those tombstones again. They press in but not far enough…just need a hair or two more and it should go in.


I’m imagining a joker in a factory adding an eighth of an inch to a batch of tubes as they laugh to themselves.


Gosh, he makes it look so easy to push the bulb in…that’s how it should be, but it’s not.

The plunger on the tombstone should be relatively easy to depress.
Like clothespin type force, not C-clamp type force.
And it moves a decent amount. (more than the length of a pin obviously)

They press in but not far enough…just need a hair or two more and it should go in.
Did the tombstones on your fixture get knocked out of place and are now slightly closer than they should be?

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