Top 4 Best Tanning Bed Bulbs
Beauty

Best Tanning Bed Bulbs

If your home tanning bed is not performing as well as before, it might be time to replace the tanning bed light bulbs. Getting new tanning bed bulbs is a much more affordable way to boost the performance of your indoor tanning bed.

A tanning lamp is a very specific type of light bulb so it is important to understand the specifics and buy a tanning bed lamp that is compatible with your personal tanning bed. This is why we have created a tanning bed bulb buying guide, too.

Pssst – If you don’t have time to read the full post, here’s our top 3 best tanning bed bulb picks:

BEST OVERALL
Wolff Bronzing Sun Plus F71 100W Bi Pin Tanning Bulb

  • 1000 Hours Tanning
  • 100 Watts
  • Bi-Pin Fitting
  • Fits Many Models

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Read our review
BEST FOR OLDER BEDS
Brilliance Bronzer F73 HO RDC Tanning Lamp

  • 1000 Hours Tanning
  • 100–120 Watts
  • Compat with F73 lights
  • RDC Fitting

Check Amazon →
Read our review
BEST FOR VALUE
Wolff Dark Tan II F71 100W Bi Pin Tanning Bulb

  • 800 Hours Tanning
  • 100 Watts
  • Replaces Most Lights
  • Bi-Pin Fitting

Check Amazon →
Read our review

Top 4 Best Tanning Bed Bulbs

Read on to find out which are the best tanning bed light bulbs and which tanning bed bulbs you can use in your tanning bed.

1. Best Overall: Wolff Bronzing Sun Plus F71 100W Bi-Pin Tanning Bed Light Bulb

Wolff Bronzing Sun Plus F71 100W Bi-Pin Tanning Bed Light Bulb

FITTING Bi-pin
SIZE F71
WATTAGE 100 watts
COMPATIBLE WITH Alpha Sun, Solar Storm, SunQuest, ESB, ProSun, ETS SunVision, Virtual Sun and Sontegra
LIFESPAN 800 hours

The Wolff Bronzing Sun Plus model wins the best tanning bed light bulb because of its affordability, versatility, and results. These tanning bed light bulbs fit a large variety of tanning bed models, are not too expensive and hold a lot of power.

These bronzing lights only require very short tanning sessions, starting with less than 10-minute sessions. This is because these UV lamps are quite powerful so longer sessions would cause overexposure.

Wolff Bronzing Sun Plus is a good choice for when you are looking for a glow similar to sun tanning but with the convenience of indoor tanning. Use these tanning bed light bulbs for a summer glow during the winter.

The Wolff Bronzing Sun Plus is compatible with a number of tanning bed models from the following manufacturers: Alpha Sun, Solar Storm, SunQuest, ESB, ProSun, ETS SunVision, Virtual Sun and Sontegra.

Read Recent Customer Reviews on Amazon.com →
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Pros

  • Powerful tanning bed light bulbs
  • Short sessions
  • Versatile design

Cons

  • Not suitable for long tanning sessions
  • Bad customer service

2. Best Budget Tanning Bed Light Bulb: Wolff Dark Tan II F71 100W Bi-Pin Tanning Lamp

Wolff Dark Tan II F71 100W Bi Pin Tanning Lamp

FITTING Bi-pin
SIZE F71
WATTAGE 100 watts
COMPATIBLE WITH ESB, Sunquest Wolff, SunVision, Sunstar, Solar Storm, SunMaster, Alpha Sun, Sunsource, Anytime Beds
LIFESPAN 800 hours

Wolff Systems is one of the biggest brand names in tanning lamps and they deliver some of the best tanning bed light bulbs. This Wolff Dark II promises quick dark tans due to its higher levels of UVB rays.

The higher UVB levels mean you need shorter tanning sessions to achieve the same coloring. This is a time-saving replacement tanning lamp.

The Wolff Dark Tan II comes in big packs so you can replace all the tanning bed light bulbs at once. The available packs are 10, 12, 16, 20, 24, 26 and 28 bi-pin tanning lamps.

This is also one of the most affordable tanning bed light bulbs so it is a great budget pick.

Read Recent Customer Reviews on Amazon.com →
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Pros

  • Budget option
  • Comes in large packs
  • Quick tanning

Cons

  • High UVB levels
  • Does not ship to Alaska or Hawaii
  • Difficult to contact customer service

3. Industry Standard: Wolff Velocity F71 100W Bi-Pin Tanning Lamp

Wolff Velocity F71 100W Bi Pin Tanning Lamp

FITTING Bi-pin
SIZE F71
WATTAGE 100 watts
COMPATIBLE WITH Any tanning bed with FR71 light bulb fitting
LIFESPAN 1000 hours

The Wolff Velocity sunlamp model is actually commonly used in many tanning beds. If tanning bed manufacturers have confidence in this tanning bed light bulb, why shouldn’t you?

The Wolff Velocity sunlamp is a non-reflector tanning lamp that uses advanced phosphor technology for faster and even tanning. Expect to get the same results with shorter tanning sessions.

These tanning bed light bulbs have an expected lifespan of up to 1000 hours so you can use these tanning bed bulbs for years. Considering the lifespan and the shorter sessions, this Wolff Systems tanning bed light bulb model is great value for money.

Read Recent Customer Reviews on Amazon.com →
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Pros

  • Industry standard
  • Higher UVB levels for shorter tanning sessions
  • Long lifespan

Cons

  • Doesn’t ship to Alaska and Hawaii

4. Best for Older Tanning Bed Models: Brilliance Bronzer F73 HO 100W-120W 5% RDC Tanning Lamp

Brilliance Bronzer F73 HO RDC Tanning Lamp

FITTING RDC
SIZE F73
WATTAGE 100 watts – 120 watts
COMPATIBLE WITH Any tanning bed with F73 light bulb fitting
LIFESPAN 1000 hours

The Brilliance Bronzer is a versatile tanning bed light bulb. It can act as a replacement for a wide range of tanning bed light bulbs and fits both the 100 watts and 120 watts power requirement.

The Brilliance Bronzer HO F73 can replace Bellarium S, Velocity, Diamond Sun, Crystal Sun, Dark Tan and SunMaster tanning bed light bulbs.

Brilliance Bronzer is an affordable tanning bed light bulb manufacturer that checks for quality. This is why these tanning bed light bulbs are a good budget option for replacing the tanning lamps in your high-end tanning bed.

Read Recent Customer Reviews on Amazon.com →
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Pros

  • 5% tanning lamp
  • Affordable
  • Fast shipping

Cons

  • Only works for older tanning beds
  • Reflector-style tanning light bulb

Tanning Lamp Buying Guide

Tanning Lamp Buying Guide

Having your own tanning bed for indoor tanning is a big investment. So, you want the tanning bed to last for as long as possible to get your money’s worth.

How well a tanning bed performs largely depends on how well the tanning lamps perform. This is why replacing the tanning bed light bulbs is a good idea, especially when you notice them becoming less effective.

Replacing tanning bed light bulbs does not have to be expensive. There are plenty of affordable tanning bed light bulbs available.

One advantage of tanning beds is that many models are not-proprietary. This means that you can replace the tanning bed light bulbs in your tanning bed with tanning lamps made by a different manufacturer.

Trying the tanning bed light bulbs of different manufacturers lets you customize your tanning bed to your own personal preference. You can change the intensity of your tanning routine by choosing tanning bed light bulbs with different levels of UVA and UVB radiation, for example.

This buying guide puts together the basic information that you need for choosing replacement tanning bed light bulbs.

What Is a Tanning Bed Light Bulb – How Do Tanning Beds Work?

Tanning bed light bulbs are a specific type of lamp that is used in a tanning bed. A tanning lamp emits artificial UV rays which cause the skin to darken with exposure.

Traditional sun tanning is a result of your skin coming into contact with the sun’s ultraviolet rays. A tanning bed mimics this with special light bulbs that emit high levels of UVA radiation and to some degree UVB radiation.

UVA radiation encourages melanin production which is what gives people a tan. The UV lamps in a tanning bed speed up melanin production which is why you tan faster.

The relationship between the UVA and UVB rays and your health is why you should only use the best quality tanning bed bulbs. Also, always follow the tanning directions of health care professionals like your GP and dermatologist.

Types of Tanning Bed Light Bulbs

Types of Tanning Bed Light Bulbs

Most tanning bed light bulbs look like tube lights but using a different light technology. The two main types of tanning bed light bulbs are RDC tanning bulbs and bi-pin tanning bulbs.

An RDC tanning bulb, or recessed double contact tanning bulb, is the older model. These tanning bulbs have an adapter that covers the pins.

As the name already suggests, a bi-pin tanning bulb has two pins sticking out at the end. The bi-pin is the standard light bulb model in most modern tanning beds but the pin cover is the only real difference between these lamps.

What Size Tanning Bed Light Bulb Do You Need?

There are several parts to the tanning bed light bulb that you need to understand to know what type of light bulb you are buying. Most tanning bed light bulbs have two important numbers on it, the F-number and the T number which correspond with its length and light bulb size.

The most common F numbers on a tanning bed light bulb are F71, F72 and F73. The number behind the F indicates how long the light bulb is in inches so an F71 tanning bed light bulb is approximately 71 inches long.

The F-number is often also an indicator of what type of light fitting the tanning bed light bulb has. Most bi-pin tanning bed light bulbs are an F71 type light bulb while most F72 and F73 tanning bed light bulbs are RDC light bulbs.

The T number on a tanning bed light bulb refers to the same thing as on a conventional tube light; the eights of an inch. A T8 tanning bed light bulb is 1 inch while a T12 tanning bed light bulb is 1.5 inches big.

The best way to find out what size tanning bed light bulb you need is by checking the label on the tanning bed light bulbs already in your tanning bed or checking the tanning bed user manual. Often, tanning bed light bulb manufacturers also offer a list of the tanning bed models that the light bulbs are compatible with.

How Much Power Should Your Tanning Bed Light Bulb Have?

How Much Power Should Your Tanning Bed Light Bulb Have

There is a fine line between effective powerful tanning bed light bulbs and tanning bed light bulbs that will cause a burn on your skin. Be careful with High Output (HO) tanning bed light bulbs and don’t lay in the tanning for longer than the recommended period.

100 watts is a standard wattage for most tanning bed light bulbs. Certain models hold more power, usually 120 watts, 140 watts or 160 watts.

Generally, the higher the wattage, the quicker the melanin production. This means that a tanning bed with High Output light bulbs are more likely to deliver a darker tan in a shorter amount of time.

However, the more powerful tanning bed light bulbs should only be used for shorter tanning sessions. Staying inside the tanning bed for too long causes skin damage, especially with high output tanning bed light bulbs.

For their more powerful models, most tanning bed light bulb manufacturers recommend starting with shorter sessions and building up to longer sessions so that your skin can get accustomed to the UV radiation levels.

Calculating Cost for a Tanning Bed Light Bulb

Two of the main factors affecting the price of tanning bed light bulbs is their power and expected lifespan. The more powerful the tanning bed light bulb and the longer the expected lifespan, the more they cost.

Think about your personal requirements for both lifespan and power. How often do you tan and how quickly do you wish to tan?

Do a quick calculation of how long and often you will be using the tanning bed considering the indicated power of the tanning bed light bulb. Remember that more powerful tanning bed light bulbs require shorter tanning sessions for the same results so perhaps there is a balance in the lifespan and cost.

Tanning Bed Light Bulb Kits

Tanning Bed Light Bulb Kits

Besides the standard tanning bed light bulbs that you buy per piece or pack, there are also tanning bed light bulb kits. Tanning bed light bulb kits usually combine different types of tanning bed light bulbs so that the rate of tanning is different across the body.

In many cases, even tanning is the goal of tanning bed light bulbs but in some cases, you might want less powerful or more powerful tanning bed light bulbs around certain body parts. This is where tanning bed light bulb kits come in.

For example, you can buy a light bulb kit that has less powerful light bulbs around the face or a tanning bed light bulb kit that is more powerful around the legs. Do your research for these light bulb kits and consult the manufacturer’s customer service for more detailed advice.

Tanning bed light bulbs are a specialty light bulb. Each model has a different tanning effect and is compatible with different tanning beds so take your time to go over all the details, recommended use, and the safety instructions.

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