I have some fluorescent fixtures in my basement that I would like to convert to LED, using bulbs that require a ballast bypass. However, these fixtures don't have a centrally mounted "black box" ballast like I've seen on how-to guides.

The fixture is a Cooper Lighting Model 9000.

Can I bypass the ballast on this fixture? How?

Fixture label

Whole fixture

End of fixture

(The other end of the fixture looks basically the same, except there's no green ground wire.)

3 Answers 3


After reading Jimmy Fix-it answer I decided to give it a try to modify the Model 9000 fixture for installation of LED tubes in the Model 9000 fixture rather than throwing it away, and found the way to do it, as explained below.

The end caps are two-part plastic sections held together and mounted to the metal chassis of the fixture by plastic tabs. Besides a flat screwdriver of the proper size to work the tabs loose, you will certainly need patience and will to remove the end caps. Anyway, if the alternative given is throwing the fixture away, you don't have to be so worried that you could break something.

Photo 1

Photo 1 shows the two parts of the end cap of the fixture that has the input cable disassembled. It will give you an idea of where the tabs and the holes they fit into are located. Once the parts are removed you'll want to cut the wires that come out of the tube sockets as long as you can. Pull some of the red and the black wires that go to the other side of the fixture to cut them longer for easier connection. After cutting the wires you will be able to remove and discard the three parts shown removed in Photo 2.

Photo 2

Then strip the wires (Photo 3) and connect them as shown in Photo 4 with wire nuts.

Photo 3

Photo 4

You will connect the wires in two three-wire groups. Connect one wire from each of the two tube sockets to one of the wires of the supply line. Then connect the remaining wire of each socket to the remaining wire of the supply line.

Check continuity to ascertain that each socket has one side connected to the load line and the other side connected to neutral. It doesn't matter which side is which as long as each socket has one side connected to load and the other to neutral.

You will want to push the wire nuts into the spaces that the parts removed occupied. Then reassemble the end cap sections and mount them to the fixture. Reassembly is very easy; sections will slide and snap together in place.

With the wiring connections described above you MUST use Single Ended Power (SEP) LED tubes. Since the socket at the other end of the fixture will only hold the LED tubes in place you may cut and discard the long cables going from one end of the fixture to the other.

Hope this can help and you don't have to throw the fixture away. As you may have noted there is no cost for this modification except for the cost of the two LED tubes.

  • Hello, and welcome to Home Improvement. You answered a three-year-old question, and your answer was accepted: bravo. And, you should probably take our tour so you'll know how best to contribute here. Jun 20, 2020 at 1:14
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    These are absolutely able to be converted to Led bulbs. Very nice posting! I've done 3 already only 8 more to go. Working great with no issues. As article says, just remove small transformer, small circuit board and capacitor. Cut wires close as possible at these items because you will need the length. Thanks for posting Mar 14, 2021 at 14:01

That style has electronic ballasts (as opposed to magnetic) integrated into the fixture ends and will not be easily converted (if it can be converted at all).

They are very inexpensive low-end type fixtures and are meant to be thrown away rather than repaired when something goes wrong. IMO that fixture is not worth converting, just get a whole new modern LED fixture.

  • Thanks. I already bought the bulbs, but I can use them in other fixtures in the garage that have a separate ballast. I'll look into replacing these fixtures with purpose-built LED lights.
    – coneslayer
    Sep 5, 2016 at 0:07
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    It may be cheaper to buy an inexpensive fluorescent fixture and remove the ballast to use with your LED bulbs. I recently had to do this with one unsalvageable fixture in my garage. I bought a $20 fixture to use with LED bulbs I already had, instead of buying a $60 LED fixture. Sep 5, 2016 at 2:33

I initially tried to open the end caps of these fixtures and couldn't because I was tying to be too gentle. I discovered the end caps are made of high impact resistant plastic, and can resist some prying without issue. Besides the 4 tabs on the ends, get a screwdriver under there and pry them a bit, they will release from the metal housing. Once that's done, your wiring description is perfect for single ended LED bulbs.

I used double-ended LED bulbs. All 4 of the far end wires get connected to the negative side, all 4 of the near end wires get connected to the positive side, leave the middle ground wire connected to the metal shroud...and like magic it works! I will only add that 1 or 2 of the tombstone wires were a bit short, so I wire-nutted an extension onto them.

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