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Linear Fluorescent Lamps

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Linear fluorescent lamps are available as straight or circular tubes. They are cheap to run, last for 8000 to 16,000 hours and at home are ideal for kitchens, garages and workshops.

Because of their high luminous efficacy and long lamp life (compared with incandescent lamps), many commercial and industrial lighting installations use fluorescent tubes. Although Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) are becoming more popular, linear fluorescent lamps have continued to evolve in recent years, with small diameter tubes offering more light for longer and using less power.

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New Zealand

Linear Fluorescent Lamps



GEMS Determination


Regulatory Requirements for Linear Fluorescent Lamps

Linear fluorescent lamps are covered in the GEMS (Double-capped Fluorescent Lamps) Determination in Australia. Product requirements are set out either directly in the determination or the determination refers to the applicable clause in the product standard.

In New Zealand, the detailed requirements for products included in energy-efficiency regulations are outlined in the relevant Australian/New Zealand current product standards.

Standards are available for purchase from SAI Global or

MEPS requirements

Linear fluorescent lamps manufactured in or imported into Australia or New Zealand must comply with Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) requirements which are set out in AS/NZS 4782.2. The scope of linear fluorescent lamps MEPS covers FD and FDH lamps ranging from 550mm to 1500mm in length (inclusive) and having a nominal lamp power of 16 Watts or more. The intention of MEPS is to improve end-use energy efficiency by eliminating lower efficiency fluorescent lamps from the market and to encourage the sale and purchase of higher efficiency fluorescent lamps.

The MEPS for linear fluorescent lamps in AS/NZS 4782.2 are set out as minimum luminous efficacy in lumens per Watt (lm/W) for various lamp sizes. There are also requirements for minimum colour rendering index (CRI) and mercury content. The test methods for measuring luminous efficacy are set out in AS/NZS 4782.1 and AS/NZS 4782.3.

These standards can be purchased from SAI Global or Standards New Zealand.

Find out how to make an application for MEPS

Exclusions: MEPS in AS/NZS 4782.2 does not apply to lamps that are clearly not intended for general illumination, specifically:

  • Lamps with a dominant colour or with an output that is predominantly outside the visible spectrum.
  • Lamps for colour matching and that have a CRI greater than 90 and a colour appearance approximating to a point on the black body locus.
  • Lamps that are specifically for use in an industrial or agricultural process.
  • Lamps for medical applications.
  • Lamps that have been given written exemption by the relevant regulatory authority on the grounds that they are for a specific purpose other than general illumination and are clearly distinguishable from lamps for general illumination.

AS/NZS 4782.2 does not specify electrical safety requirements.

When measured in accordance with AS/NZS 4782.1 the initial efficacy (at 100 hours) and the maintained efficacy (at 5000 hours) shall exceed the values specified in the table below. Lamps shall also have a CRI which exceeds the value in the table below.

Lam       p nominal length L (mm) mandatory

550 < L < 700

700 < L < 1150

1150 < L < 1350

1350 < L < 1500

Lamp typical power (watts) (informative)

16 – 24

17 – 40

28 – 50

35 – 80

Initial Efficacy (F 100) and Maintained Efficacy (FM)

F 100 > 66.0 and FM > 57.5

F 100 > 74.0 and FM > 61.0

F 100 > 80.0 and FM > 70.0

F 100 > 85.0 and FM > 70.0

Minimum CRI





The maximum quantity of mercury present in fluorescent lamps shall not exceed 15 mg. The quantity of mercury present is determined in accordance with the relevant Clauses of AS/NZS 4782.3.

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Use the registration database to view and compare all products that are registered under the GEMS Act.

Registration Database