Bulb FAQ

What size lamps do I need?
What is the UV rating?
Do I need Wolff lamps?
What are "hotter" lamps?
What do the different UV ratings really mean?
Which lamp is best for me?
Which lamps are most popular?
Are pink lamps hotter than blue lamps?
Will a 9.5% lamp tan me faster?
What is the best brand of lamp?
What are bronzing lamps?
What lamp should I buy?
How often should I change my lamps?
Why are some lamps so much cheaper than others?
What is the warranty on your lamps?
My lamps have 1000 hours, but they are still burning just fine, why replace them?
My tanning bed came with VELOCITY® or DIAMOND SUN® lamps, why don't you sell them?
You don't sell the brand of lamp I need for my tanning bed, why?
Do you have lamps for [brand] of tanning bed?
Can I just replace some of the lamps now, and some of the lamps later?
How often should I replace my lamp starters?
Can I mix different kinds of lamp?
What is the difference in "RDC" and "Bi Pin" lamps?
Tell me about lamp shipping.
I have more questions, who do I call?
Conclusion

What size lamps do I need?
We developed the Lamp Wizard to help you determine the correct size. Click here to open a new window with the Lamp Wizard. Over 98% of the time, you can determine the correct lamp in less than two minutes.

What is the UV rating?
This is the most confusing term when buying lamps, partially because it is the most used (and abused) term. This is the 5% or 6.5% rating you see on lamps. First of all, a higher number does not mean a "better" lamp. The UV rating is a RATIO based number of the UVB versus UVA. UVB burns you but stimulates melanin development. UVA is what actually does the tanning. A 5% lamp is 5% UVB, 95% UVA. A 6.5% lamp is 93.5% UVA. This number has nothing to do with the TOTAL amount of UV, just the ratio. (back to top)

Do I need Wolff lamps?
Just because your tanning bed came with Wolff lamps as EOM equipment, you can choose to use a different lamp as a replacement. We offer mostly Wolff products because of their proven track record in the industry since the 1970's. We also offer several brands that are compatible, as a means to keep the price points in check.(back to top)

What are "hotter" lamps?
What is commonly called a "hotter" lamp is one that has more UVB and less UVA. These lamps are quite popular, but not the best combination for all tanners. Most 20 minute tanning beds come standard with lamps that are between 4.2% and 5% UVB. A lamp with 5.5% or higher UVB would be considered to be a "hotter" lamp. 6.5% to 7.5% are typical, with UVB ratings as high as 8.5% to 9.5% also available. These hotter lamps can help stimulate the development of melanin in your skin, but are more likely to cause sunburn in your tanning bed. Remember, the "hotter" the lamp is, the lower the UVA. This means you will hit a tanning peak sooner.(back to top)

What do the different UV ratings really mean?
A lamp with a lower UVB rating will actually get you darker than a lamp with a higher UVB rating, it will just take longer to get that darker tan. Some people still prefer a 2.6% to 3.2% lamp in a 30 minute tanning bed because they get a slower, deeper, darker tan. It just takes a couple more weeks. Others prefer a 6.5% lamp because it seems to jump start their tan faster, even if they don't get quite as dark.

Which lamp is best for me?
If you have normal skin, a lamp with a UVB rating of 4.2% to 5% will give you the best results in a 20 minute tanning session. If you are hard to get started with tanning or you are more concerned with tanning FAST than getting the darkest possible tan, then a 6.5% lamp may be a better choice. If you tan daily and have a 20 minute timer, and your goal is to get the DARKEST possible tan, even if it takes longer, then you may want to look at lamps with a UVB rating lower than 5%.(back to top)

Which lamps are most popular?
The higher UVB lamps, with ratings from 5% to 6.5% are the most popular. This is primarily due to many people wanting to get a base tan FAST and more concerned with the speed of the tan, rather than the darkness of the tan.  Also, less expensive lamps tend to be more popular than the high priced ones.  This is usually true of any product, tanning or not.(back to top)

Are pink lamps hotter than blue lamps?
Another common misconception is that the color of the lamp affects the tanning. UV is what tans you, and it is too high a frequency for you to see. (some birds and insects CAN see UV, but not humans.) The color of the lamp is determined by a mix of phosphors that has NO effect on the tanning. You can take any tanning lamp, and make it glow green, yellow, purple, red, pink, blue or even different colors, and that will not change the tanning in any way. The main purpose of the color is to please the eye and differentiate the lamp from other lamps. That is all.(back to top)

Will a 9.5% lamp tan me faster?
We do not recommend lamps with this high of a UVB rating, as they are better at burning you than tanning you. Remember: When you get more than a little red from tanning, you are actually HURTING your tan. A sunburn will not only cause peeling, but reduce your skins ability to tan for weeks. It is also unhealthy to get a sunburn. We offer these ultra strong lamps to give you a choice, but strongly advise against them.(back to top)

What is the best brand of lamp?
This is highly subjective, and there are as many opinions as there are lamps, but the best lamp to buy is one tailored to fit your specific tanning style and skin type. We sell mostly Wolff products and with good reason; they are dependable and have proven themselves in the marketplace for almost 40 years! (back to top)

What are bronzing lamps
Bronzing lamps are lower rated UVB lamps that tan you slower, but darker. Many people confuse this term with "hotter" lamps, when in fact, they are the exact opposite types of lamps. Hot lamps tan fast but less dark, bronzing lamps tan slow but darker.(back to top)

What lamp should I buy?
Again, this depends on your needs. If you like the results you were getting when your tanning bed was new, then a similar lamp is the best way to go. If you decide to move away from the original types of lamps your bed came with, it is best to make a modest step, rather than a radical jump. Going from a 4.2% lamp to a 9.5% lamp is not likely to give you the results you were expecting.(back to top)

How often should I change my lamps?
Most lamps are rated for 1000 hours, but we recommend you change them in the 600 to 700 hour range for best results.  At 700 hours, this equals 2100 tanning sessions of 20 full minutes.  If you use the tanning bed ONE time per day, this is almost 6 years.   Most people tan seasonally, but have more than one person tanning on the bed, so on average this is about every 3 to 5 years, depending upon usage.(back to top)

Why are some lamps so much cheaper than others?
Several factors figure into the price of the lamp.  Shipping (especially if it is made in Europe), the different phosphors, the quality of the lamp, and the quantity the seller purchases.  Price alone is not the determining factor when it comes to quality. Also consider the people standing behind your product, and altogether the experience and track record of the company you are buying from. (back to top)

What is the warranty on your lamps?
All lamps are guaranteed to arrive in perfect condition and come with a manufacturer's warranty of 30 days from the date of arrival.  If you ever have a problem with lamps you purchased from us, just call us at 1-800-881-2427.(back to top)

My lamps have 1000 hours, but they are still burning just fine, why replace them?
Most tanning lamps will actually continue to light up for up to 10,000 hours, but they quit producing significant amounts of UV (the tanning rays) after 1000 hours.  You can keep using them, but you will not be getting much of a tan.(back to top)

My tanning bed came with VELOCITY® or DIAMOND SUN® lamps. Can I order them?
Those lamps are OEM equipment for tannning beds sold by ETS, Inc.  They own the trademark and have established dealers to provide product, however the cost is generally higher. You can call us directly to purchase them for around $20 or more each, or you can instead purchase replacement lamps here that cost much less.  These replacement lamps are FDA recognized equivalents.(back to top)

You don't sell the brand of lamp I need for my tanning bed, why?
Actually, we carry dozens more brands than we show on the website.  Listing all the brands causes more confusion, so instead we list the best sellers.  Odds are, you can use a different lamp than what came as OEM equipment on your bed, and save money.   Call us at 1-800-881-2427 and we can special order your existing lamp, or suggest an FDA recognized equivalent.(back to top)

Do you have lamps for [brand] of tanning bed?
Yes.  We have the lamps for EVERY brand of tanning bed.  If you don't see your tanning bed listed, just call us at 1-800-881-2427  and we will source the lamp for you.  Be sure to have your tanning bed's make and model, or one of the lamps handy to speed up the process.(back to top)

Can I just replace some of the lamps now, and some of the lamps later?
You CAN, but we recommend against it.  It is best to replace all the lamps at one time, but if you MUST replace them in stages, we recommend you replace either the canopy or bench as a whole set.  So, if you have a 24 lamp bed, replace the top 12 lamps as a set, then the bottom 12 as a set.  Again, it is really best to replace all the lamps at one time.(back to top)

How often should I replace my lamp starters?
Most tanning salons replace them once a year, which is about every 2 to 3 lamp changes.   Home tanning beds may go 5 to 10 years without needing to change them.  The main indicator is how fast the lamps start.  if you have lamps that are slow to start, lamp starters are usually the cause.  You don't have to replace all the lamp starters at one time, but since it only costs around $40 to replace all the starters in a 24 lamp bed, its a good idea to replace them each time you change the lamps. (back to top)

What is the difference in "RDC" and "Bi Pin" lamps?
Inside the lamp, nothing, but they connect to your tanning bed in very different ways.   RDC (Recessed Dual Connector) lamps "spring" in and out, where Bi Pin lamps have two pins that slide into the lamp holder, and you twist the lamp into place, much like a 4 foot office type lamp.  There are no advantages in tanning with either lamp.  RDC lamps are usually 72 or 73 inches long (and some rare 60 and 74 inch varieties) where Bi Pin lamps are usually 71 or 59 inches long.  RDC are actually just Bi Pin lamps, with special adapters pushed onto the pins.(back to top)

Tell me about lamp shipping.
All our lamps are processed and shipped to you within 24 hours, and you will get them a few days later. If the lamps you have ordered are back-ordered, we instantly email you with a back-order notification.  If it is going to be more than 3 or 4 days before we can fill your order, we will call you and ask if you want to cancel your order, or make a different lamp choice.   Lamps are sent "Over-sized FED EX" and are fully insured.  NOTE:   If you lamps are damaged in transit, you must ACCEPT the shipment, regardless of condition, then email us.  Most of the time, we can send you replacements the same day if it is just one or two lamps.  If you refuse the shipment, we have to wait until the package gets back to us before shipping replacements, due to FED EX policies.  Damage is rare, but is usually only one or two lamps, so refusing the package will delay you by a week or more, and cost you extra shipping. (back to top)

I have more questions, who do I call?
Call us at 1-800-881-2427 anytime during business hours and speak to someone in the Lamps Dept.(back to top)

Conclusion:
If you are still confused and not sure which type of lamp, the best thing to do is stick with a 20 minute lamp, if the bed is built with a 20 minute timer which most are. Most tanning beds come standard with a similar lamp, and millions have used them for years. Always try and match bed timer to lamp session time.