Lighting products are chock full of specifications. Some of them have a nuanced impact on the overall performance of the lighting system, and some can make a significant impact on light levels, color, or energy consumption. Ballast factor is one of those often overlooked or misunderstood specs that can make a big difference in your linear fluorescent lighting system.
So what is a ballast factor?
Ballast factor is calculated by dividing the lumen output of a lamp-ballast combination by the lumen output of the same lamp(s) on a reference ballast. A ballast factor of <1 means that your fluorescent system will produce less light (lumens) than the reference ballast and a factor of >1 means it will produce more light.