All About Lamps!

Projector lamps are not as mysterious as they seem. They are definitely high technology but once you learn about the specifics, they are more science than magic.

The end goal is to educate you, the potential customer.
Then you can make the best choice when replacing your projector lamp. Obviously, I hope you buy it from us, but if not, I want you to be confident in your choice if you don’t.

Projector lamps fail for all sorts of reason. Projector lamps are designed to run a certain amount of time. That design relies on certain constants, such as cooling and run time. The cooler a lamp runs, the longer it will run properly. The hotter it runs, the shorter it’s run time will be. By nature of design they generate a lot of heat. The manufacturer of your projector has a built-in method to handle that heat. Therefore there are so many fans, and in some cases, air filters. They manage the heat by drawing in cool ambient air and blowing out the hot air generated by the lamp and other electronics.

If your projector has been sitting in the same place for a while, it will get dust inside and that will affect the cooling functions. Most of the time this affect is minimal, but if you notice your lamps failing early (especially if they burst when they fail) you may have a deeper build-up of dust causing the temperature to run higher than it should. Projectors will sense if they get too hot and will warn you, but they will not notice if they are running hotter than they should if it’s not as hot as the overheating threshold. This is the main cause of short lamp life, but not the main cause of lamp failure.

The main cause of lamp failure is old age of the lamp. Once the lamp has been used for its designed life span, the image will be dim, colors not as vibrant. The lamp may take longer to come on. Instead of seeing the picture 10-15 seconds after power-on, it may take up to one minute or more. Most projectors will have an on-screen warning. They will display “Lamp Time Expired” or “Replace Your Projector Lamp”. There are many different messages. Your manual will have the warning specific to your projector. The other symptom is no light at all. You press power, the fans turn on, and you hear the projector try to start but after 3 tries you see the Lamp LED turn on or flash (model dependent).

Many people will continue to run the lamp after the message appears, but I strongly advise you to replace the lamp as soon as you see the message or warning. Continuing to run the lamp puts your projector at risk for serious damage. If your lamp runs too far past its rated hours, the quarts glass can get soft and cause part of the lamp to explode inside. This throws molten glass all over the inside and can truly ruin your projector at the worst. At the best you will need to pay for a professional cleaning to remove the glass to keep it from jamming a fan or breaking a color wheel. This isn’t the point of this article, but I wanted to address it.

The short of it is, replace your lamp when you get the warning. Spend the money now rather than waiting and having to potentially spend 3x the amount on repair and a lamp once it explodes.

Now to the replacement options. There are so many options. So many that it is confusing, and many sellers take advantage of this. I am going to focus on the tactics and methods used to take advantage of consumers so that you are not taken advantage of.

Let us go over the types of replacement lamps.

  1. OEM from the manufacturer. This is the most expensive option. It will arrive in a box that has the logo of your projector manufacturer usually. Some companies have merged and been bought lately so it might say Panasonic if you own a Sanyo, but no matter what, the box will have an original manufacturer name. These are not always the best option though. Unless you are still under the original warranty there is no real need to buy an OEM. Most OEM lamps are not actually made by the company they are sold for. Many are made by companies who also make them for the aftermarket. This brings us to the next type.
  2. Aftermarket with Original Bulb Inside. This is what we sell. We only offer lamps that are built with a proper manufacturer bulb. We use lamps that utilize Philips, Ushio, Phoenix, Matsushita, and Osram replacement bulbs inside. There are no compatible bulbs or recycled bulbs. These are brand new bulbs, that are built into brand new housings. The housings we sell (with the original bulb) are made for the aftermarket. This means that there are no corners cut and the lamp housing and its parts are brand new. This is important. All the lenses, the bulb brackets and connectors are all brand new and tested to fit and perform as the original. You can save as much as 80% on the cost over the OEM. Our manufacturer has been in business almost as long as we have. We work closely with them to ensure the lamps we sell are top notch options. Many customers use us exclusively because we only focus on lamps. We do not bother with other items so that we can be sure that the lamps we sell are the best option.
  3. Aftermarket with Compatible Bulb Inside. Not a great option for 95% of the customers. There are many old projectors that no longer have OEM or Original Bulb Inside options. Old Rear Projection TVs that use lamps may also be a candidate for compatible lamps. These use bulbs made overseas on old factory equipment. They are non-branded and usually built to unknown specifications. The life span can be hours or days. The light output may vary even across the same models. These are normally seen on Amazon or on more unscrupulous websites that advertise them as OEM equivalents. I always look at the price. If you see a lamp for $20-40, then you can be pretty sure it’s a compatible regardless of the title of the listing. They use terms like “Genuine” or, ” Original Quality”. They even try and make it look real by assigning a “brand”. Just because it has a real name, doesn’t make it a good lamp. The only time (in my opinion) to buy a compatible lamp is when you have no other options or you don’t really care how the lamp runs. Maybe you have a 15 year old projector and want to run it outside for a weekend party? Compatible lamp might be an option. That said, it still may fail before the party is over. I never would buy a compatible personally, but your mileage (and needs) may vary.

The important thing to know is that the cost of a projector lamp is directly in line with the quality of the projector lamp. That price is determined by the manufacturer and how much they spent on the parts. This is why some lamps are $30 and the same part number might be $130 elsewhere. This is not greed. This is purely the level of quality.

Here are a few things to look for when purchasing a replacement projector lamp. These items will directly affect your picture quality, projector longevity and the amount you will end up spending to keep your projector running.

  1. Bulb/Lamp type.

    MajorBulbBrands

    The bulb or lamp is the actual working portion of your projector lamp. This is the glass and ceramic item that emits the light. You can see it by following the wires from the connector to where they are affixed (usually with a pair of screws). If the projector lamp you are at is using a bulb from a major manufacture, it will say Philips/UHP, Osram/PVIP, Ushio/NSHA, Phoenix/SHP, Matsushita/HS or Iwasaki/UHE. If there is no name listed, you can be reasonably sure it is a knock-off and not worth your time or money
  2. Housing construction.

    Good housing on right, bad housing on left
    Look for housings that have good quality moldings. Many aftermarket housings are made in the same factory as the OEM. Therefor the projector lamp housing should have the same general shade of black instead of a grey or lighter look. This ensures the special high temperature plastic is formulated right to ensure long operation without any warping of the housings. This makes your lamp run longer and keeps the light pointing where it should.
  3. Housing vent alignment.

    Good vent
    Inside many projector lamp housings there is a set of metal vents that point the projector’s cooling air where is needs to be. This cools the inside of the bulb, where most of the heat is generated. If your old lamp had a failure where the wire burned off the end (like in this picture), it indicates a lack of cooling air or a miss-aligned or just missing vent assembly. This will shorten the life of the lamp drastically. Many compatible lamps do not use the vents correct or at all. This makes them cost less but makes them fail very quickly.
  4. Connector wires.
    Wire Types
    You would think wire is wire. Wire is not just wire in a projector lamp. Wires in projector lamps are designed to handle the heat and high-power electricity that makes projector lamps work. Most projector lamps use a 20,000 volt insulated wire made from silicone. This wire is rated to at least 300f(150c) and 10-20KV. During initial projector lamp ignition, this voltage can be up to and over 10,000V. During normal use, the power can be as high as 3-4 amps at 100-120v. To a normal person, this is a lot of power for a wire. Many compatible lamps use normal wire that is only rated to 300v and 150f(70c). This can lead to melted wires and short circuits in projectors. A bad time either way unless you have the right wire, which costs more than the cheap wire. Again, you get what you pay for.
  5. IR Block Lens.

    IR Block Lens
    This only applies to DLP projector lamps, but it is a critical and commonly ignored issue. This is the piece of glass that sits in the front of the projector lamp housing. It should have a coating that is obviously red/blue/purple when you look at it from a slight angle. this coating is what blocks the infrared light radiation from getting past the color wheel and causing its sensor to fail, or letting the infrared radiation get inside the optical assembly causing the internals to overheat and ruin things like the DLP chip or the lenses that are expensive and difficult to replace. An incorrectly coated IR block lens can truly ruin your projector.
    As I said above, the red/blue/purplish coating is what you want. If you see no coating or a ‘greenish’ coating, that lamp is a lamp that will ruin your projector. The proper coating has to be applied with special plasma sputtering equipment which is not cheap. The extra cost this adds to the lamp is worth it when you look at repair costs for things that the infrared light radiation can damage.

These are the main items to look for when you buy a replacement projector lamp. Hopefully you buy it from us, but if not, this will tell you what you need to know to make an informed choice.
Every lamp on Amazon is not the same. Every lamp you find on Google is not the same. Knowing what makes them different is the best tool you, as the consumer can have to make the decision that works best for you.

If you have any questions about our projector lamps, please get in touch with our very well-trained staff. They can assist you in finding the high-quality lamp you need and will have it shipped as quickly as you need. They can also answer any questions you have after you receive your lamp whether it be an install or troubleshooting question.
They can be reached Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm Eastern Standard time at 1-800-664-6671, Sales@Purelandsupply.com or via our Online chat.

As always, Thank You from all of us at PurelandSupply.com!

2020 Is Another Good Year for Customers of PurelandSupply.com

Did I catch your eye?

If you are not a current customer of PurelandSupply.com I hope I did.

This also applies to current customers but we have decided to take advantage of a new FedEx delivery program that targets metropolitan areas with 7 day a week delivery to your home/residential address.

FedEx Logo

If you place an order before 5pm Eastern Standard time, Monday through Friday for free residential ground shipping, your order will still ship the same day.

We are one of the few companies who actually stock their products. We do not have items drop shipped. Not that drop-shipping is bad, but we truly have the stock that we list on the website. When you need a new Optoma projector lamp and you see we have three, I can walk out to the warehouse and see those three lamps.

Many times, the order may be in the delivery area on a Saturday. Before this, you would have to wait until Monday. Your poor lonely projector lamp is sitting in a cold dark delivery truck for two extra days.
Now FedEx will deliver that projector lamp to you on Saturday or Sunday, depending on your distance. This may mean you can watch your projector up to two days earlier! What does that really mean?

It means you can play two extra days of Madden or FIFA, two extra days of watching Gordon Ramsay lamenting poorly made scallops, or two extra days of watching The Witcher…

homeTheaterProjector

Mostly it means you can replace your existing Projector lamp up to two days earlier and not having to worry about it again for another few years until this lamp is up for replacement.

The best part about this is it costs you NOTHING extra. PurelandSupply looked at the needs of projector owners. We evaluated what services would help our customers obtain their product as quickly and as inexpensively as possible. We spent months evaluating options and verifying the cities that were promised this service. We worked with FedEx in depth to make sure this plan was one of convenience and value. I think we hit the nail on the head, and I hope you do as well.

Keep in mind this only applies to Home and Residential areas. If you are in a commercial location, unfortunately you may not be able to take advantage of this to that address. Of course, if you ship it to your house instead of your office, it still may be an option.

For more information about the program, such as what is considered residential/home, please follow this link to FedEx’s website where they have specific information and coverage areas. Most major cities and towns are covered. If you are in a ‘metropolitan’ area, then this should apply.

FedEx Home Delivery

If you need to get your projector lamp a little faster and are not concerned about the 7-day option, we still offer every form of FedEx expedited delivery. Everything from FedEx 2-Day, all the way to Next Day Saturday Delivery (order by 5pm Friday). See our Shipping page for more information and rates as well as the current 2020 FedEx ground time in transit map.

As always, please don’t hesitate to contact us via Email, Phone or Online-Chat. Our highly knowledgeable staff is here Monday – Friday, 9am to 5PM Est to answer your questions and handle any order concerns you might have.

Don’t wait until 2021 to take advantage of this opportunity to become a PurelandSupply.com customer! Follow us on Facebook and have a wonderful 2020!

Happy Holidays! Now Replace Your Projector Lamp!

Row of Christmas Balls

2019 is barreling towards the end with Thanksgiving fading into the review mirror and the Christmas season sitting on our lap. This is a time of year when we worry about shopping for presents and getting your house in order for the beginning of 2020.

One important thing to get in order is your video projector. End of the year is a perfect time to replace your projector lamp. If you use your projector for movies, gaming, or general TV watching, you probably won’t notice that your image is darker than it used to be. This applies to all brands. Even Epson, Panasonic, BenQ, Casio, Mitsubishi and Dukane just to name a few. Granted if your projector is less than two years old, this isn’t an immediate issue. I hope you keep reading as this will apply to you eventually.

Replacing your projector lamp now will make certain you can entertain your guests over this holiday season. It will make watching the ball drop a lot better if everyone is not crowded around a puny 42″ TV. Instead everyone can watch it on a nice 110+” screen. 🙂

If you live in an area where the night temperatures are still not freezing, consider setting up your projector outside for New Years. You can shine it on the side of a house, using a simple white bed sheet as a screen. They work surprisingly well. I know if it wasn’t 20f here for New Years, I would do the same thing.

Having the ability to hang out with friends and family outside of your own house and watching the ball drop is wonderful. This will be a better experience if you know your projector lamp is in good nick.

Projector working outside

This is also a great time to perform the maintenance that your projector needs to keep running happily. Whether you are changing your projector lamp or not, you stand well advised to remove the existing projector lamp and use some low pressure air or a can of compressed air to loosen and remove any dust that has built up. I know maintenance is a common topic of this blog, but that is only because it is so critical and yet so ignored by information from the manufacturers. They stand to gain more than you if you do not maintain it. Think of maintenance as sticking it to the man!

While as a company we would hope to sell you projector lamps, we rather only sell them if you need one.

We don’t want your old lamp to fail early. We want your lamps to run as long as they are designed for. I’d rather have a happy return customer 2-3 years later, than a one-time customer who only gets a few months out of our projector lamps. By keeping your projector clean internally, this can be accomplished.

Feel free to go back and check some of our older blog posts on why maintenance is so important to maximizing your projector lamp’s life.

Since we do want to sell you a projector lamp, we opted to start a special 5% discount coupon code just for the readers of this blog. Head over to our search box and plug in your model number or projector lamp part number. Then you can use the coupon code HOLIDAY2019 to save 5% on your purchase. Like the rest of the year, we offer FREE Ground Shipping with your order. Take advantage of this offer and get your projector ready for the holidays. Then you can start 2020 with a fresh projector lamp and a nice clean projector.

HOLIDAY2019 Coupon Code for 5% Off your Purchase with
Free UPS Ground Shipping!!!!

Thank you and Happy Holidays from all of us at PurelandSupply.com!

Your Number One Source for Replacement Projector lamps.

HappyNew Year Image

The End of Daylight Savings is the Best Time to Check Your Projector Lamp

Lamp-o-ween

Halloween is right upon us. Come Friday November 1, the 2019 Holiday season begins in earnest.

This is a great time of year to stop putting off replacing that projector lamp that has been nagging you to change it since June. Every football game starts off with pressing ‘enter’ on the remote to get rid of that nag screen.

Like most people, you will have family and friends over more often. Having your video projector running properly will alleviate some of that classic holiday stress. It won’t finish your shopping for you, or prevent the inevitable fruitcake but it will make it so you can lose yourself in your favorite holiday movie (Christmas Story is mine) or watching a snow storm streamed for far away if you happen to live in a warmer climate.

Projector lamps tend to fail at very inopportune times. If you are planning a family gathering to look at pictures or watch videos, that is when the old projector lamp will explode. It’s almost like they know when you really need them to work…

This is also a fantastic time to give your video projector a good cleaning. Especially if your lamp is still newer and not near its replacement time. A general light maintenance is a great way to ensure you get the full life out of your projector lamp.

We have recently lowered prices across many of the popular brands such as Epson and Panasonic. Take advantage of this and buy a replacement projector lamp before your lamp fails.

The best way to know if you should obtain a replacement is to check your lamp hours in the projector’s menu. If your lamp has used 75% of its life or more (ie. 1500 hours of a rated 2000-hour lifespan), it would be wise to buy a replacement now. Then install it when it arrives. Take the old lamp which still works and put it in the new lamps box and save that lamp for a backup.

Since Projector lamps slowly dim as they age, you will have the benefit of a much brighter picture. Then the old lamp is put aside as a backup in case the new projector lamp fails when it ages. It’s always good to have a backup, but always make sure the lamp you are using is the lamp with the warranty. That way if it fails during the six month/180 day warranty, you can take advantage of the warranty and not be stuck.

Stay tuned to our blog for an upcoming special on what pitfalls to watch out for when buying lamps online.

In the meantime, visit our home page or type your model number into our search box to find a new projector lamp with a proper original brand bulb inside. www.Purelandsupply.com

Are You Ready for Football?

…Is your Projector?

The NFL kicks off today with the Bears hosting the Packers. I suspect most Chicago and Green Bay fans gave their projector a test run last week. No self respecting football fan would wait until the last minute right? Right?

If you are human like the rest of us, you were busy putting away your summer shorts and breaking out the flannel. That lamp worked last season. That means its OK for this season….maybe.

When a projector lamp starts to wear out, you don’t really notice. The decrease in brightness is very gradual. This makes it a lot easier to watch after a year or two of use. Remember, just because it’s lighting does not mean it’s OK.

5J.J3905.001 for BenQ W7000

This time of year is a perfect time to give your projector a quick cleaning. Vacuum out the air-vents and maybe give the vents a little blast of air. We have other blog posts about maintenance in detail. This is also a perfect time to replace your projector lamp if its getting old. Always change them before they fail if you can. Then you have a ‘known-good’ backup, a new bright picture and no chance of missing your favorite team start off the 2019-2020 season.

Check your projector lamp hours in the menu (some projectors do not offer this info, but most do). If you own a BenQ W7000, they use a 5J.J3905.001 projector lamp. If the 2000 hour life span is past 3/4 of it’s life (ie. over 1500 hours of a 2000 hour rating), then it is a good time to consider replacing the projector lamp. Especially if you are planning to use the projector more often with the autumn and winter sports seasons.

There are plenty of other reasons to replace your projector lamp. If you happen to be retired or retiring, like Andrew Luck of the Colts, then I definitely recommend replacing your projector lamp.

Check out our selection of projector lamps at https://www.purelandsupply.com/ ! Type in your model number or lamp ID number to our search box for your model and pricing. We offer Free UPS Ground with all orders. Feel free to call our highly trained and extremely knowledgeable staff at 1-800-664-6671 or email us 24/7 at Sales@PurelandSupply.com

Are You Ready for School?

BackToSchool

I finished my schooling some time ago. TV’s may have been the CRT type and the internet may have had more AOL than it does these days but preparing for the return to school is something that happens at the end of every summer around here.

My question is are you ready? This is mostly pointed to teachers, administrators and instructional media folks. Anyone who has to deal with video projectors and projector lamps.

This time of year is perfect to make sure you are ready to use your projectors. Over the summer the lack of use can allow dust and debris to build up over air-vents and lenses. Take some time to give your projectors a once-over with a damp cloth(no cleaner or solvent, just damp with water). This will pickup any obvious dust, preventing it from being pulled inside and causing you grief down the road.

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

When you do turn on the projector, take a moment to see how many hours are on your projector lamp. If you are remotely near the end of the projector lamp’s life, replacing the lamp now would put aside another chance of projector failure at an inconvenient time.

I recommend replacing your lamp before you get the end of life warning. Once you have about 10-15% (1700-1800 hours) of the life left of the 2,000 hours, the projector lamp is going to be unreliable. Some projectors have 5,000 and even 10,000 hour lamp ratings. The 10-15% life left rule would still apply but at higher hours.

Change the projector lamp before it fails. Then you put your old lamp in the desk or closet and save it as a backup. Even with 5% life left, the projector lamp will be a good backup in an emergency. It’s always better to err on the side of replacing the lamp early than trying to play projector-lamp-roulette and pushing it past its rated life span. When people do this, it is not saving them any more. It is giving them a terrible picture, and putting the projector at risk for an expensive repair.

New projector lamps are always brighter. They always improve your picture and they are always more reliable than a worn or wearing out projector lamp.

Put your model number into our search box and pick out a new lamp for your projector today.
https://www.purelandsupply.com/default.aspx

When Recycling Is Not Beneficial

Recycling is good for the environment. It keeps trash out of landfills that can be put back into manufacturing. Recycling can lower the cost of raw materials. Most of the time recycling is the answer to many issues affecting our environment.

Recycle Logo

In one particular case, recycling is a terrible idea.

Recycling Projector lamps.

I do not mean scrapping the Projector lamp down and recycling its components. The glass, the metal, the plastic can all be recycled on it’s own.

I mean when the lamp has the old bulb removed and then a new or still working bulb is installed and then the projector lamp is sold as new or ‘Recycled Housing’.

Projector Lamp housings are made of consumable parts. Even though they do not have many moving parts, they do get subjected to a pretty taxing environment while they are in operation.

The average projector lamp runs at 500f or so inside the bulb reflector. The heat is cooled to a more reasonable temp once it gets to the plastic and the glass, but not too much less. This continues for the entire life of the projector lamp. That means the plastic and glass and metal has been exposed to wide temperature swings for 2,000-10,000 hours(depending on the model).

That amount of temperature swing (room temp up to a few hundred degrees) causes the lamp housing to degrade. On many lamps, there is a coating applied to the lens to protect and block ultraviolet and Infrared light. This coating degrades slowly and unnoticed until it lets too much UV/IR through. Once this occurs, your projector will be cooked from the inside out. In some rare cases, the IR/UV can be so strong it could damage your eyes!

worn out UV/IT lens
Lens is worn out but sometimes is used with a new bulb. Not a good idea
Worn Out Housing
This shows a well worn lamp that has plastic that is no longer suitable for use.

Another problem with re-used/recycled projector lamps is the degradation of the plastic. As the plastic is heated and cooled, the plastic properties begin to change. Projector lamps use glass fiber re-enforced plastic. The glass fibers will begin to ‘float’ to the surface. If you ever notice a ‘gray’ area next to the black in a lamp, that is where the glass fiber has begun to float to the surface. This causes the plastic to become less reliable structure wise. This can lead to a warped housing and the bulb being pointed away from the proper light path and may melt or cause a fire by heating an area that isn’t meant for light. The other issue with old plastic is the cooling air vents may no longer be as effective leading you to need a new lamp well before you should. These usually have short warranties or are a hassle to handle the warranty.

The connector is the most dangerous area of a recycled projector lamp. They connectors handle high voltage and high amperage. The need to be secure and strong. When a lamp gets used for many thousand hours, it will cause the connector to lose some of its flexibility. Then when it is re-installed, one of the metal pins can break loose from the plug and slide out of position without you knowing. This leads to a second arc/spark outside the projector lamp, inside the connector. The lamp connectors will then melt and burn into the TV or projectors connector.

Melted Connector for JVC
Connector melted. Projector needed $400 in repair work.

The amount of smoke it releases is impressive. This almost always requires the projector being sent somewhere for repair. The cost of a ballast and labor can be $350-500(or more). Many times, the projector is ruined and not cost effective to repair. This only means that instead of saving landfill space you are now adding a projector and a projector lamp to the trash.

Quite the opposite of recycling…

A smaller yet important issue with using recycled projector lamps is if your model uses one of the many on-board lamp timer modules. They are a small circuit that is built into the lamp. This records the run time and hours used. If the timer is not reset, you will not have a proper run time record and in many cases the projector will shut itself down in protest.

Timer Module
Lamp Timer Module For Sanyo,Christie,Eiki and Panasonic

Technically, this is because the projector thinks the lamp is worn out, but I say in protest as it doesn’t want to chance having a lamp explode inside.

Buying a new projector lamp with a genuine original bulb inside will prevent all of these possibilities. The cost savings on a recycled lamp are quickly surpassed by the cost of repair and replacement due to early failure.

A new projector lamp has a properly coated UV/IR cut lens, glass fiber evenly distributed throughout the housing, and a connector with strong connection pins.

A new projector lamp has little to no chance of melting inside your projector and damaging the internals.

If you need a place to safely send your lamps for Proper Recycling, check out https://www.lamprecycle.org/ or contact PurelandSupply.com.

You can ship old projector lamps to us directly and we will properly Recycle them at no charge. I recommend USPS as they are the cheapest shipping option. Refer to our Address info below.

PurelandSupply
co:Recycle
210 Gale Lane
Kennett Square PA, 19348

Don’t take a chance to save a few dollars.

Buy new projector lamps and protect your investment as well as your eyes at Purelandsupply.com

Congratulations to the 2019 Scholarship Winner – Jacob Popielarczyk!

Congratulations to Jacob Popielarczyk, the 2019 Pureland Supply scholarship winner!  Jacob graduated Charleroi Area High School in PA and will enter the Penn Commercial Business/Technical School to learn welding. 

Jacob loves working with metals and machinery and has been interested in welding since the age of 12.  As he describes it, “welding is used all around us and plays a primary role in the manufacturing sector, construction, transportation, maintenance/repair and energy.  It is a specialized skill that serves a wide variety of industries and is used in an immense amount of ways throughout the world.”  

Jacob looks forward to mastering “the precise, challenging and high-tech skill” that is welding.  He says, “There are endless career paths available in welding and advancement opportunities.  I am passionate about the industry and want to learn new and innovative techniques and to further my education upon completion of a certified program at Penn Commercial Business/Technical School and become a member of the Steamfitters or Iron Workers union.”  We congratulate Jacob and wish him the best in his future career!

Welding in only one of the many trades that qualify for the $1000.00 Pureland Supply Scholarship. 

This scholarship is available to students who have been accepted to an accredited trade school, vocational college, technical school or community college for the study of trade, craft, or labor occupations.  Recipients are chosen on their ability to describe how their chosen trade or field plays an important role in today’s world and why this is the path they have chosen.  To apply for the scholarship that will be award on May 1, 2020, visit

https://www.purelandsupply.com/t-scholarship.aspx.

Is It Time to Replace My Projector Lamp?

After watching Season 8 Episode 3 of the HBO Game of Thrones on my Optoma TH1060, it inspired a question that seems relevant. Is my lamp bright enough to watch videos or is it time to install a new lamp?

My lamp is still coming on so why would I consider replacing it before it actually fails?

Unlike many other types of lamps, a projector lamp will slowly dim as it ages. This is due to the type of technology used to make the lamp function. As I have described in other blogs, these use a ‘Short Arc Mercury Vapor’ technology. In normal people speak, this means there is no filament(small wire that glows to make light). Rather there are two small pieces of tungsten that sustain a small yet powerful spark between the two points. Those points are encased in a small glass tube that you see in the middle of your bulb.

When you sustain a spark, it is called an Arc. hey..that rhymes…

Normally an arc is not going to give off white light. It will be a mix of blue, white, lots of ultraviolet and Infrared light. This sort of light will not make a good picture. It will ruin optics and possibly your eyesight.

To get a more color correct picture, there is a mix of gasses inside that little arc tube. Using a minuscule amount of mercury metal as well as some other gasses, the heat of the arc makes that gas mixture glow with a bright white light with some UV and IR emissions. The UV is blocked by the glass of the lamp lens. The IR is blocked by either an IR block coating on the lamp lens itself (most DLP) or on a built in piece of glass in the projector( most LCD). If the IR is not blocked, it can heat up the components inside the optical path. They will melt or burn and ruin the projector. Fortunately every lamp we sell has its coating checked. That means the only thing left to watch out for is when the tungsten arc points inside the arc tube start to wear apart too far.

On average the tungsten electrodes are 0.8-1.3mm apart. This varies per bulb, per model of bulb or bulb size. On the bulb you will sometimes see this arc gap measurement in the part number. For instance the 280W bulb in my BL-FP280E shows an arc gap of 1.0mm. That gap will grow as the bulb is used. The tungsten starts to wear. Once the arc gap is wide enough, the bulb may not light when asked to. It also may flicker as the arc cannot be held uniformly due to the tungsten points becoming uneven with use.

This is where the lamp life estimations come from. Manufactures measure the light output of their projector until the output drops to a certain level. That level will vary of course and is not published. No matter. The point of this time limit is to make sure you are not trying to see a picture that should be bright enough but isn’t. I have heard claims that they set these time limits to ensure more lamps are sold. That might be partly true but in reality the lamps do lose their original brightness as they age. There are some symptoms to look for that will tell you if the lamp is wearing out besides the brightness. Because really, if you watch it often enough, you will not notice the lamp dim. It happens so slowly over such a long period that it is almost not noticeable. At least until you put the new lamp in and exclaim, “WOW! That is WAY brighter!”.

The first symptom is the lamp taking longer to come on. The lamp should reach full brightness pretty quickly. If the lamp seems like it is taking a few minutes rather than less than a minute to get bright, it might be wearing out.

Another is if the lamp seems to be ‘flickering’. I say flickering in a light-to-dark sense rather than colors flickering around. That is something else entirely for another blog post. The light-to-dark flickering is mostly the arc starting and stopping and then restarting again very quickly. Another cause is the arc ‘walking’ around the arc points. It will leave its optimum position and this will be obvious by the image getting dim and then bright again in less than a second.

More common than you would expect would be the appearance of specs of dust in image. You would think any amount of dust would appear but these projectors are designed to be able to work properly with a moderate amount of dust. This is even true with dust directly on the DLP chip in a DLP or on the LCD panels of an LCD projector. Dust is inevitable in a normal install situation. Manufacturers know that and design the light path to work “around” it. I say “around” because the a new or not highly used lamp will output enough light to flood out the dust so that it is not affecting the image at all. The light is so bright that the dust is invisible in the image.

When a lamp is nearing the end of its life, the light output has dropped to the point to where you may notice bits of dust causing spots on the screen that weren’t there before. While a good cleaning is good to do seasonally, no amount of cleaning will get rid of all dust. There will always be a little. Replacing the lamp with a new lamp should bring back the brightness so that the small amounts of inevitable dust will not show up anymore. This is always my first go-to when I hear about dark spots or ‘water spots'(its been described that way to me). If the visible anomalies are still there after the lamp change, then its something else, but most of the time that is the solution.

Lastly look at the age of the lamp. Manufacturers have all sorts of life-span claims. The average is 2000-3000 hours of use. This isn’t a guarantee of course. There are many variables that come into play such as ambient temperature. How many times the lamp it started per day(schools tend to go through them well under the rates hours). Plus dust buildup inside(lack of cooling shortens lifespans of lamps). Check the lamp time of your unit. If you are 75-85% through the lamps life, the light output is much lower than it was. Keep in mind the old lamp can be a nice backup. Put that new lamp in and put the old one away for a spare.

These days, you can even download a light meter for your smart phone. Take a brightness reading(notice I do not say lumens, that is for another article). It’s arbitrary but that is OK as its for your projector only.

Then in a few months, measure it again using the same image. I prefer a white picture(YouTube has plenty of 10 hour white image vids). You can then start to get an idea of how fast or slow the lamp is wearing out. Once you get to 50% of the brightness it should be pretty obvious and you can put the next new lamp in.

Ideally purchased from us of course!

To break it down into an easy checklist, read below

  1. Is the lamp taking longer than a minute to get to full brightness?
  2. Is the lamp flickering light-to-dark?
  3. Do you see any visual anomalies in the picture that weren’t there a few months ago? Do they look like spots or dark circles?
  4. Does your light meter ap say the image is now 50% of the original brightness?

If your answer yes to any of those, click here, put in your model or lamp number and get a new lamp sent out today!

That way when we head back to Westeros for the rest of season 8 we can actually see what happens in Game of Thrones…

5 ways to Avoid Buying Counterfeit Projector Lamps Online

Counterfeit lamps are a problem for everyone. From the companies who sell them (either willingly or through ignorance) to the end users who end up with damaged or non-functional equipment because of it.

How can you protect your wallet and your projector from counterfeit lamps?

  1. This applies to most things in life. “IF IT SEEMS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE, IT PROBABLY IS” I cannot re-iterate this enough. If you read an advert for a lamp that uses an “OEM Philips UHP Bulb” and the price is significantly less than a comparable listing, then you are probably buying a counterfeit bulb.
  2. Look at the companies reviews with a grain of salt. I notice that some of the more ‘questionable companies’ tend to have five-star glowing reviews all in groups and they all tend to be within a day or 2 of each other. That is followed by no reviews for a week or so and then usually a reasonable amount of negative reviews. Those tend to be people who were duped by the ‘stuffed reviews’ that convinced them to buy the lamp they thought was a good deal. Many of those less than honest companies do this every few months. Sometimes they even change their name and start the dance all over again.
  3. Check the online forums.Make sure they require a confirmed order and that they check the reviews to make sure they legitimate end users. There are other sites like r/hometheater and AVSforum but they should be taken with a grain or five of salt. It’s possible for fake or erroneous reviews to be posted there. Always trust your gut.
  4. Look at the warranty. The longer the warranty, the better most of the time. That said, the long warranty can be a gamble by the company to make it look like they stand behind a great product when in reality they are banking on the chance that if the lamp fails you will forget its under warranty and not exercise your rights. I am slightly biased as our warranty is 6 months but I think that is a reasonable length. If you lamp lasts at least 6 months, the chances of it lasting the rest of it’s rated life-span are very reasonable. It is the “One year” warranties that concern me. If you need to cover your lamp that long, then why? Is it that unstable of a manufacturer that it might fail from a build error in 9 months? These are questions to ask yourself.
  5. How are the listings worded? Do you see “OEM Equivalent” or “Made from OEM parts”? OEM means Original Equipment Manufacturer. OEM Equivalent means its not an Original, but equal to it. That is a curious way to say “compatible”… Listen to that little voice that tells you it doesn’t sound right. Add up the red flags. Way too low of a cost, Way too long of a warranty and tricky wording on their listing. All of this means you would be better off looking elsewhere.

Look no further than our main page. We list over 12,000 items with inventory and each lamps specs clearly listed for your own knowledge.

Check us out here. Purelandsupply.com or call us directly at 1-800-664-6671 where you can speak to a representative who can help you get a real lamp, real fast.