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You just bought a used tanning bed or have an older tanning bed and you need new lamps, but you have no idea what kind of lamps you need. Read on, as our resident nerd will explain what you need to know to figure this out, in plain talk.  The page looks long, but it will skip you to the right sections that apply to you.  Relax, you are in good hands.

As the largest seller of tanning lamps, we hear this every day, but fortunately, it is pretty easy to figure out what you need using this guide.  You need to be near your tanning bed for this page to be helpful.  If you are not near your tanning bed, write down our domain name (TanningBeds4Less) and come back when you are.  We do this all day long for customers, so trust the process and read on, all your questions will be answered in 1-2 minutes.  Have a pen and paper handy, so you can write down the size you need.

1.   Do you have face tanning?

There are a couple different types of face tanning, so look below.  If you don't have any type of face tanning (most tanning beds), skip to Step 2.   Otherwise, read about each below.

Turbo Facial
This system is fairly rare, but a few models have these turbo lamps.  If you are using the system in the home, our suggestion is to remove the small turbo lamps and don't replace them.  (Really)  Instead look at one of the special Face Tanning Kits for your bed.  These small lamps are expensive and put out too little UV to justify their cost.  Removing them from service is perfectly safe to do.  You can buy replacements if you just have to have them, but be forewarned that they tend to cost $20 each, which is about twice the cost of one of our basic lamps.  You can get more power for less money with the other kits.  If you bed has Turbo Facials, then the long lamps are surely F71 sized.  Write this down.

High Pressure Facial

This is very common type of face tanning that uses a 400 watt bulb that is a few inches long (shown above), behind a (usually) purple filter glass.  Never use them if the glass is missing or cracked, this would be dangerous.  The replacement cost for the bulb itself is around $20.  Some beds have more than one of these.  Most beds that use this facial have F71 sized lamps for the long lamps, and the lamps in front of the face bulb may be F59 (shorter), or they may have shifted the lamps down and used F71 lamp all around.  You have to look at the lamps, and count the number of short/long lamps to be sure.  I cover this below.

Dual Zone Facial

This is actually just a F71 lamp that has been specially treated to produce two different UV spectrums.  All the magic happens inside the lamp, not outside.  When the lamps are on, they look like the image above, although your bed might have fewer/more of the face bulbs. This means you can either replace it with the same kinds of lamps, with regular F71 lamps, ClearTech, Dual Zone face tanning lamps, etc.  You need F71 lamps, write this down.

Face/Arm/Side

This is actually just a F71 lamp that has been specially treated to produce two different UV spectrums, like the face lamps.  The typical 24 lamp bed will have 8 plain lamps, 8 face lamps, and 8 side lamps.  When the lamps are on, they look like the image above.  Like above, you can generally replace them with any F71 lamp you choose, including ClearTech, bronzers, etc.  You can also replace them with a kit that is just like the current lamps.  We call this a FAS or Face Arm Side kit.  You need F71 lamps, write this down.

No face tanning
Your bed doesn't have special face tanning, but you can likely add it.  You can go to Step 2, below.


2. What brand of tanning bed do you have?

Before you say "Wolff", please know that Wolff isn't a brand of tanning bed.   Dozens of bed brands have the name Wolff on them, and it only refers to the original lamp style.  There should be a name on the bed such as SunQuest, SunVision, ESB, Suntana or similar.  90% of the time, this will automatically tell us what size lamp you need, as many manufacturers only used one size lamp in all their tanning beds.   If you are not sure what brand of bed you have (label missing, worn off, etc.) then go to step 3 now.

SunQuest, SunVision, SunMaster, ESB, Solar Storm, Soleil, ACN, Alisun use F71 lamps.   Of course, if you have face tanning, you may also have short lamps, F59, or Dual Zone lamps (above).  If you don't have high pressure face tanning, then you definately have F71 sized lamps (write this down), and *any* 100 watt F71 lamp will work in your bed.   At this point, you are pretty much done, but you can jump to step 4 if you want to learn some options and prices for your bed. (recommended)

If your tanning bed is a Puretan, Montego Bay, SonnenBraune, Suntana, Sundash, SCA or other brand, it gets a bit more complicated since they used a variety of sizes in different beds.  It isn't hard to figure out, but you need to go to the next step, just to be sure.


3.  What do your current lamps look like?

Ok, we will do this the hard way ;)  Actually, it is pretty easy to tell your lamp needs by looking at the lamp as long as you can see the numbers on it.  Old lamps often used a wierd code on them, but newer lamps use a somewhat more universal numbering method.  Look at your lamps (noting if they are all the same length or not) and write down the code on the lamp.  The code will almost always have the phrase "T12" in it.  That means "thickness = 12/8", which is a fancy way of saying the lamp has a diameter of 1 1/2 inches, like almost every tanning lamp.

Most lamps will have a code like this:  x71T12xxxx.  Obviously, the letter "x" isn't really used, and could be any letters, such as F71, DSS71, VEL71, etc.   The letters don't matter, only the number.  For example, a DSS73T12 is really an F73 lamps.  The DSS part just stands for "Diamond Sun S".  It is exactly the same size as a VEL73T12, which is the code for a Velocity F73 lamp.  The two numbers before T12 are what matters.  If you have short lamps in front of a high pressure facial, those will likely say "DSS59T12" or similar, which means they are F59 lamps.  Using "F" and the size is the proper, ISO way of sizing lamps, but some companies fancy it up with their own letters.  It means nothing, they are still F71s, F73s, or F59s.

The letter R.  If you see the letter R mixed in, such as FR71 instead of F71, this means you have a reflector lamp.  Examples include Reflex Bronzer, Sol Plus, Pro Reflector, etc.  Call us instead.  Reflector lamps are generally used on only larger tanning beds, but a few 24 lamp beds might have them.   Very likely, this doesn't apply to you.  If it does, we have lots of them in stock, so don't worry.

What if your lamp has different codes?  Older lamps like Crystal Sun S, Bellarium S, Bellarium Plus, etc. used a different coding system.  Those lamps aren't made any more, but they were still just F71, F72, F73 or F59 lamps with fancy codes.  Here is a guide you can use to convert your old codes to their actual size:

F72 codes: (has an RDC, black cap)
DA1-766-100W, F72T12, DSS72T12, or similar xx72T12
(This is a fairly rare size.  Some Suntana beds and a few Puretan/Tanfit beds used this.)

F73 codes:(has an RDC, black cap)
SA2-10-100W, SA1-10-100W, DA1-767-100W, DSS73-T12, VEL73-T12, ES3-73-100W or similar xx73T12

F59 codes: (bi pin lamp, shorter)
SA1-59-80W, DA1-59-80W, F59T12, DSS59T12, VEL59T12 or similar xx59T12

F71 codes: (bi pin lamp, 6 foot)
DA1-763-100W,  F71T12, DSS71T12, or similar xx71T12
(This is the most common lamp size in the industry.  Most tanning beds use this size.)

Write down what size you need now so you can refer back to it later!

If you have size F72, you will be looking at either the Pro Plus or ClearTech 20 lamps.   If you have F73 lamps, we stock about half of our lamps in this size.  Go to the lamp kits section and choose according to the number of lamps in your tanning bed.  If you need both F71 and F59 lamps (ie: you have a high pressure facial) then you will be looking at the Pro Plus, Pro Bronzer or ClearTech lamps.   You can choose a kit with the right number of both types of lamps, plus a face tanning bulb, from our lamp kits area.  If you have F71, check out the next section.


4.  What are my options?

Your options depend on what size lamp you have, and most of you will have F71 lamps.   Virtually every tanning lamp we offer comes in this size.  This section will help you pick the right lamp for your tanning bed.  You can also just jump to the Lamp Kits, but you may find the below sections helpful.

Before you decide what lamp to use, first you should ask yourself if you want any special features to enhance the tanning experience.  Likely, you didn't even know you had these options!  Choose one of the questions below if they apply to you.

A. Do you have a 16 lamp bed, but you want it to perform like a 24 lamp bed?
B. Do you have trouble tanning your legs?
C. Do you have trouble tanning your face or sides?
D. Are you hard to tan because you have very fair skin?
E. Are you hard to tan but have average skin?
F. Do you want to tan FASTER, even if that means a tan that is less deep?
G. Do you want the darkest possible tan, even if you have to tan in longer sessions?
H. Do you simply want the best, most powerful lamp on the market?
I. Do you want the cheapest lamp that still performs well?
J. Do you just want something similar to what the bed came with originally?
K. Do you want something slightly hotter (faster) than what the bed came with originally?
L. Do you want something that is very, very hot?


A. Do you have a 16 lamp bed, but you want it to perform like a 24 lamp bed?

This is a Catch-22, because if you get a really hot lamp (high UVB), then you will get striped when you tan.  You should avoid any lamp, by any maker, that is rated higher than 6.5%UVB if you have a 16 lamp tanning bed.  Even if someone else's salesperson thinks it is a good idea.  We build beds, we know better than to do this.  If you are wanting to really ramp up the power of your 16 lamp tanning bed, it needs more than a high UVB bulb, you need a bulb with tons of UVA and just some extra UVB.  The only real choice to get this kind of performance gain out of a 16 lamp bed is to upgrade to ClearTech technology. Specifically, the ClearTech 20 tanning lamp.  These cost more, but they last twice as long, so they are more cost effective in the long run.   Yes, they actually burn green.  They really are different, and in this circumstance, different is good.  You can buy 16 of them in a kit for your bed here or look at all our kits for 16 lamp beds here.

Back to questions.


B. Do you have trouble tanning your legs?

We have a kit for that!  Actually, you would just need to use the SunMaster Custom Body lamp throughout your bed, and install the label over your feet, like shown below.   The lamp is a standard F71 bulb, so it will work great in any tanning bed that uses an F71 lamp with no modifications.  All the technology is INSIDE the lamp.

The pink section has about 20% more UVB for extra tanning stimulation.  After a couple of weeks, you will notice your legs getting noticably darker, which will even out your tan. This particular kit works in all beds, no matter how many or how few lamps you have.  Not only is this one of our best selling kits, but we offer several tanning beds in this configuration and they are some of our best selling models.  If you are having trouble getting your legs as dark as the rest of you, then the Legs Plus kit is definately the right kit for you, and it is quite affordable.  View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


C. Do you have trouble tanning your face or sides?




You might consider getting a lamp kit for either the face, or face/arm/sides.   These lamps are regular F71 lamps on the outside, but they are treated differently inside, to produce two lamps in one.  We offer two styles, Face (with 12" of pink section) and the Body lamps, which are half pink, half blue.   You install them in different places in the tanning bed to achieve the desired results.  You mix them with regular bronzer lamps where you don't want extra power (either Custom Bronzer or Pro Bronzer).

Above is the Face / Arm / Side kit for a 24 lamp bed.  Others are similar.   Note how you get more power (pink) at your sides and in the face area.

Above is a Full Face Kit for a 24.  Note that all the lamps in the face area have a pink section directly over your face, with 20% more power.  You can also less than 12 lamps in the canopy with face lamps, even stagger them every other lamp.

To make this easier, we have kits of lamps that include exactly the right number of each type of lamp you need for each desired effect.  For example, the 24 lamp FAS (Face/Arm/Side) kit has 8 Custom Bronzer, 8 Custom Body and 8 Custom Face.  You only pay for the lamps, nothing is added to the price when we put them in kit form.  If you want extra power directed to the face or to both the face and side, these kits are ideal and very affordable.  View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


D. Are you hard to tan because you have very fair skin?

If you are fair skinned, then you need to be particularly careful when tanning.   The idea is to AVOID burning.  Regardless of what other salespersons might or might not tell you, you should AVOID lamps with more than 5% UVB rating.  Light skinned persons do not develop melanin as fast as regular skin, so a hotter lamp will NOT help you, only burn you.  6.5%, 8.5%, 9% lamps are not the answer.  The answer (like it or not) is time.  You should get a tanning bulb with 5% lower UVB and expect longer session times.  This is the only way you will get a quality tan without burning.  If you have a 16 lamp bed, this means the Custom Bronzer or Pro Bronzer.   Both are 5% lamps.  If you have a tanning bed with 24 or more lamps, look at the Reflex Bronzer 5% or better yet, the Pro Reflector 2.6%.  These lamps tan slower but deeper, which is what you need. View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


E. Are you hard to tan but have average skin?

Generally speaking, average skinned persons that have difficulty tanning just need a modest boost in UVB to stimulate melanin.  For these persons, a 6.5% lamp is the right answer.  Good examples include the Custom Plus, Pro Plus and Pro Twister.   If you don't mind spending a little more, the ClearTech 20 is the best lamp for you.  They cost a little more but they last much longer, so they end up costing less in the long run.  If you do NOT burn very easily and need something VERY hot, then the Wildcat 8.5% lamp may be a viable option.  View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


F. Do you want to tan FASTER, even if that means a tan that is less deep?

If you are looking for fast session times, then expect the tan to not be as deep or dark as it would be if you tanned using longer session times.  This has nothing to do with any brand of lamp, it is physics.  The Wildcat 8.5% lamp is a good choice if your tanning bed has at least 24 lamps.  The best choice is the ClearTech 120R lamp, which only works in beds with at least 24 lamps.  It uses the newest technology, plus it has a built in reflector system for the most intense tanning of any tanning bulb on the market.  Also consider the ClearTech 20, which will work in any bed with 16 or more lamps.  It is not quite as fast, but it will tan twice as deep as any 8.5% or higher lamp.    View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


G. Do you want the darkest possible tan, even if you have to tan in longer sessions?

Some people like 20 to 30 minute tanning sessions because they know they get a deeper and darker tan over time.  It doesn't build as fast, but it will look more realistic.   If you have a 16 lamp tanning bed, you choices are either the Custom Bronzer, Pro Bronzer or ClearTech 20.  If your tanning bed has 24 or more lamps, consider the Pro Reflector (2.6%), the Reflex Bronzer (<5%).  In particular, the Pro Reflector is a slower but deeper lamp that is less likely to burn and produces a very even tanning experience.  View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


H. Do you simply want the best, most powerful lamp on the market?

In a word, ClearTech.  You have two basic options, the ClearTech 20, which works in any tanning bed, and the ClearTech 120R, which is recommended for beds with 24 or more lamps only.  The 120R is basically the same as the 20, but has a built in reflector to make the lamp about 35% stronger across the entire spectrum.  These are the newest generation of tanning lamps, using a special patented glass that is significantly more transparent to ultraviolet.  They even burn a different color, green.  They cost more, but they last twice as long as our Custom lamps, so they are actually more cost effective.  View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


I. Do you want the cheapest lamp that still performs well?

Then look at our Custom Bronzer and Custom Plus.  At around $10 and $11, they represent tremendous value.  We use the Custom Bronzer as OEM equipment on many of the SunMaster tanning beds, and our customers love them.  View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


J. Do you just want something similar to what the bed came with originally?

If your tanning bed has a 20 minute timer, then our Bronzer style lamps are likely the best replacements.  This includes the Custom Bronzer (800 hour life) and Pro Bronzer (1200 hour life).  The Plus series lamps are slightly hotter versions of these lamps.   If your bed has Diamond Sun S lamps (very common), please note that only the manufacturer sells these, but the Custom lamps are legally compatible with them, for about half the price.   View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


K. Do you want something slightly hotter (faster) than what the bed came with originally?

If you are looking for something just a step up from stock lamps, our Plus lamps fit the bill.  This includes the Custom Plus (800 hour life) and Pro Plus (1200 hour life).  The Pro Twister and ClearTech 20 are good examples of premium lamps that would also fit the description, while providing a fuller UVA/B spectrum, and delivering a better quality tan.  If your bed has Velocity lamps (very common), please note that only the manufacturer sells these, but the Custom lamps are legally compatible with them, for about half the price.   View all lamp kits.

Back to questions.


L. Do you want something that is very, very hot?

We don't recommend super hot lamps for fair skinned persons, or anyone with a 16 lamp bed, but if you want the hottest lamp that is still going to bronze you, then you should look at either Wildcat lamps, or better yet, the ClearTech 120R.  View all lamp kits.  Note that the hotter the lamp is, the shorter your session time will be but the faster that your tan will fade.  This is not a property of our lamps, it is just the science of how tanning works.

Back to questions.


5.  I am still confused!

That's ok, just call us and we will gladly help you.  Call 1-800-274-1744 during business hours, and be sure to have your tanning bed or lamp information handy.  You will get the same great price on the phone that you would online, guaranteed.

 

Stuff the lawyers make us say:  Please note that many of the trademarks used herein, such as Diamond Sun S(R) and Velocity(R), are actually trademarked names that belong to ETS, LLC.  We use them under Fair Use exceptions to help our customers find legally compatible lamps.  Wolff Systems(R) and the Wolff System logo are registered trademarks of Wolff Systems, Inc.  Other trademarks are the property of their respective  companies, and not our property.  We are not affiliated with any other company.  Thanks for reading this ;)



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