I don’t think I’ve ever written a product review like this one.
I do a lot of research before clicking that ‘Buy Now’ button. So I usually have a pretty good idea of what I’m getting.
I’ve been testing LED shop lights for my garage lighting upgrade project.
I thought I knew what I was getting with the Barrina LED single-bulb T5 shop light (Model INWT504020650Ac).
I was wrong.
But…it actually worked out great in the end, though.
Barrina is a company based out of Zhongshan, China. They don’t have a functioning website that I could find (which is never a good sign). However, they’ve got fantastic reviews on Amazon, so I wanted to give them a try.
One of their biggest selling points is that they’re a low-wattage, low-cost, single-bulb LED fixture available in the 6500 Kelvin color temperature.
Before I get to my thoughts on these LED lights, I’m going to go over some basics about the product itself. Then I’ll share some pictures of how I installed it and how it looks in my garage.
Finally, I’ll get to why I think this is the wrong light and the right light – depending on where you use it.
So stick around.
The Barrina T5 Light Fixture
As I mentioned, this particular Barrina LED fixture is a single-bulb LED light. But because it’s a T5 light fixture rather than a T8 fixture, it will be much smaller than the other garage lighting fixtures I’ve looked at.
As you can see, there’s not much more to this fixture than the bulb and a little plastic on the bottom. Overall dimensions are 46.1″ long, 1.4″ high, and just under an inch wide.
You can link up to six bulbs together using the same power cord.
Most garages are notoriously short on light fixtures and power outlets, so this is a welcome feature.
That said, the three-pronged connector feels cheap. It doesn’t fit easily into the fixture socket itself, and it feels like it would fall apart after plugging it in a few times.
If you buy these fixtures in a multi-pack of six, eight, or twelve, they will also come with a 20″ connector cable.
T5 Bulb Options
You can get the Barrina LED fixtures in three different color temperatures, but only the 6500 Kelvin lights are available individually.
If you want the 5000 K or 4000 K bulbs instead, you’ll need to purchase them in packs of eight.
For more on what color temperature is right for your garage lighting, check out this article. There I explain what color temperature is and how to choose the right color temperature for how you use your garage.
Unfortunately, all of the Barrina bulbs were frosted, with no option for clear bulbs.
This doesn’t affect the overall light output. However, it means that shadows cast by the light will have a softer edge instead of being sharply defined.
Each bulb puts out 2200 lumens using only 20 watts of power, which is a good power-to-wattage ratio. These lights won’t break the bank when you buy them, and they’ll help save you money on your energy bills.
Barrina T5 LED Lights: Installation
Because each Barrina LED fixture is so light, there’s not much you need to do to mount these to your ceiling or cabinet. Each one comes with two clamps that fit neatly over the back of the fixture.
The clamps are so small and thin that I didn’t think they’d hold the lights up, especially in drywall.
So, of course…challenge accepted.
I mounted the lights first into my garage ceiling trusses and then into the drywall ceiling in between the trusses.
In both cases, the small screws held the clamps tightly, and there was no give or wobble at all.
Once the clamps are screwed in, the fixture snaps in place, and you’re done.
If you’re looking for a light fixture that almost disappears into the ceiling when it’s not turned on, there’s no better option than these Barrina T5 LED fixtures.
That wasn’t the look I was going for, but I can definitely appreciate the appeal for some people.
I also like that the power cord is white, not black like some other brands. It’s much easier to blend into the ceiling.
Why the Barrina T5 LED Lights Are Wrong & Amazing At The Same Time
So why did I immediately rule out these Barrina LED fixtures for my garage?
In the previous section, I mentioned that I’m not going for the “invisible fixture” look. I liked the Hyperikon LED fixtures with their brushed bare metal look.
It gave a little touch of class to my garage. But I understand that it doesn’t matter to everyone.
Still, I instantly crossed these lights off my shortlist.
After flipping the power switch, the lights kicked on after a one-or-two-second delay.
It took another few seconds to process what I was seeing.
The 6500 K color temperature is just too blue for overhead garage lighting.
Pictures don’t really do it justice.
It just felt…unnatural.
This photo, taken of my garage from inside my kitchen, hasn’t been modified. You can see the dramatic difference between the warm kitchen lights and the bright-white 6500K Barrina lights.
One reason to use a higher color temperature light is that it brings things into a super-sharp focus so we can see details clearly.
They’re perfect for task lighting, but using them exclusively as overhead lighting feels unsettling.
Which made me realize these fixtures would make the perfect under-cabinet light!
You want something that brings intense focus to a specific area for task lighting, workbench, or under-cabinet lighting.
You won’t find many better options at this price that will put out light at 6500K.
The housing is incredibly lightweight, weighing just over one pound. That’s light enough to use some Gorilla Glue or other adhesive to attach to a metal garage cabinet. (Just don’t get any Gorilla Glue on your skin!)
If you’ve got wood cabinets, you could use the mounting brackets the same way as if you’d be mounting the fixtures to drywall.
Update: Amazing Under Cabinet Lights!
This section wasn’t in my original review, but I wanted to update you on where I’m using the Barrina LED lights and how they look.
I ended up mounting one LED light underneath my Gladiator cabinets and couldn’t be happier. The light is small enough to be barely noticeable when it’s off and extremely bright when it’s on.
I don’t want to give the impression that the light is invisible because it’s not. You can definitely see it, which may bother some people.
I used some inexpensive magnets that I bought on Amazon to secure the mounting bracket to the bottom of the cabinet. That way, I can remove the light if I want to put it in a different location.
The on\off switch is mounted on the power cable, which puts the light’s controls at arm’s reach. That design didn’t work for overhead light use, but it definitely works here.
It’s tough to show just how bright these lights are, but they make a HUGE difference!
That workbench was always a little dark because most of the light hitting it was slightly behind me. My body would always cast a shadow over whatever I was working on.
These Barrina LED shop lights are amazing as under-cabinet lighting, and I couldn’t be happier!
If you haven’t already guessed, I like the Barrina LED light fixtures – just not for the reasons I thought I would.
I can see why some people use them as overhead garage lighting. The fixtures are almost invisible and put out a decent amount of light while being one of the least expensive lights available.
Wondering what garage lighting to buy? I tested some of the highest-rated shop lights against each other to find the best LED shop lights. Check out my super-detailed guide to garage lighting for more tips!