Areogarden Light Bulb - What is This?

one of the light bulbs on my Areogarden went out and after i saw how much they are charging for a new set i thought i would try to take off the base and rig a fluorescent screw in light bulb that i bought at Ikea. after i popped off the bottom of the areogarden light bulb though i had second thoughts. anyone know what all this is? normal fluorescent light bulbs don’t have all this wires, does it? anyone know if it is possible to rig a standard fluorescent lightbulb to work in an areogarden?

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I can’t look at your photos here (work computers block photobucket…no idea why), but if you’re talking about something like this, yeah, that’s typical compact fluorescent innards. Remember that a compact fluorescent made to screw into an incandescent socket has to have the ballast and starter actually inside the bulb, rather than on the fixture.

That’s everything you need to get the voltage up to where the fluorescent works. Just buy the replacement bulb that works with the unit and be safe.

It seems that just uses a different base and if you can change the base in the fixture you should be alright. But make sure you know exactly what you are doing.

Those electronic ballasts fail as do the tubes. I have repaired a few of those but more for the entertainment and learning because if you factor the time spent you are better off replacing it.

Yes, normal CFL’s have all this. It’s mainly the ballast for the fluorescent lamp. Normal CFL’s have them, in the bottom part just above the screw-in base. (Though this does look a bit bigger than most.)

Steps to use a regular CFL bulb:
[li]check the holes those pins go into with a voltmeter, to verify that they are 120V AC. (If not, forget it – too much trouble to be worthwhile.)[/li][li]Then all you need is a physical connection to convert from that 2-pin connection to a regular Edison screw connector.[/li][li]Disassemble the burned-out one, saving the bottom plug-in connector, and the wires from those 2 pins.[/li][li]get a regular edison screw connector at a hardware store.[/li][li]connect the wires from the 2 pins to the screws of the edison screw connector.[/li][li]figure out some way to physically seure those two together, inside an insulating, heat-resistant covering.[/li][li]now you have a converter, from the 2-pin connector to a normal Edison screw connector.[/li][li]Screw a regular CFL bulb into it, then plug it into the 2-pin connector in the lamp. You will have to be careful that the total length of the CFL bulb plus this homemade converter is still short enough to fit into the fixture.[/li][/ol]Frankly, it seems like a lot of effort for little gain.

Personally, I avoid this by declining to buy devices that use a proprietary, non-standard connector for consumable parts, thereby locking you into buying replacements only from them, at whatever price they want to charge. (But it’s a little late for you to do this.)

it is labeled as 115Vac. is this close enough?

i hate hate hate companies that do this. i got the areogarden as a present last year and it works pretty good, but you can tell that the whole thing is set up to get you to buy more and more stuff. from there seed packs to there seaweed nutrient tablets to there $20 light bulbs. i love fresh herbs in the winter, but i don’t know if i want to spend the money on growing them or just picking them up at the store.

I wonder if the light itself is special or different in any significant way or if it is only the socket. If it is just the socket then you can just change the socket and use standard CFLs.

The light bulbs are cheaper than the seed packs. I find that hilarious considering the price of the bulb. Any light bulbs work for plants, so if you do rewire to a different socket that shouldn’t be a problem. The problem may be the amperage rating of the wire going to the socket, and that may need an upgrade too.

Nah. From the pictures he showed, the wires look to be about #18 or #16 size – either of those can easily carry enough current for one (or even a few) CFL bulbs.