User Tag List

Informational! Informational!:  0
Likes Likes:  0
Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: Lighting Ballast Problem

  1. #1
    Getting There...
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Madison, WI USA
    Posts
    799
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Lighting Ballast Problem

    So about 2-3 weeks ago when I updated my grow rack I bought a second 2x 2ft fluorescent ballast. Already the first small section of both bulbs in it have burned out, and I think that has caused both of them to dim. Is the ballast bad? Some bad bulbs? I will say that it gets humid in the rack, but this hasnt cause problems for the older, identical ballast before.
    thanks,
    Kyle

  2. #2
    Av8tor1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    4,811
    Mentioned
    6 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    All lamps require adequate cathode heating for
    proper lamp operation and lamp life. If the cathodes
    are not adequately heated, premature lamp end
    blackening will result. Inadequate cathode heating
    may be due to:

    1. Improper seating of lamps in the lamp sockets
    2. Damaged/broken sockets
    3. Broken/poorly crimped lamp pins
    4. Too great of socket spacing causing poor lamp
    pin connections
    5. Damaged lamp cathode(s)
    6. Ballast lead wire not connected at ballast or lamp
    socket
    7. Inadequate ballast filament voltage

    Source: Phillips Fluorescent Lighting Troubleshooting Manual

    I would swap bulbs with the known good light. If the problem follows the new bulbs... its the bulbs. If the problem stays with the new fixture... it's the fixture.


    http://www.howstuffworks.com/fluorescent-lamp.htm

  3. #3
    jesse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Hamburg (Germany)
    Posts
    184
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Vbkid View Post
    2x 2ft fluorescent ballast
    That's a pretty uncertain specification.

    2ft fluorescent lamps are available with either
    - T8 = 18 watt or
    - T5 HO = 24 watt or
    - T5 HE = 14 watt
    specs.

    So for two 2ft lamps you might need a ballast with 2*18= 36 W, 2*24= 48 W or 2*14= 28 W rating.

    What's the wattage of your lamps?
    What's the wattage of your ballast?

    Wattage rating of lamps and ballast must be the same.
    Voltage rating also.

    If a ballast can be used for different wattage lamps (there are some on the market), it should have different connectors for different wattage, that must be connected to the lamp accordingly to the wiring diagram printed on the ballast.

  4. #4
    Av8tor1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    4,811
    Mentioned
    6 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Jesse,

    I may be wrong but going by some of his previous postings, I think he is referring to the complete fixture/luminaire and not just the ballast.

    Av

  5. #5
    jesse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Hamburg (Germany)
    Posts
    184
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Av8tor1 View Post
    I may be wrong but going by some of his previous postings, I think he is referring to the complete fixture/luminaire and not just the ballast.
    In a complete lighting fixture he should have a built-in ballast that fits. Indeed, when answering I thought that he just replaced the ballast or purchased a ballast for lamp sockets already present.

    But if a complete new lighting fixture is affected...
    ...perhaps the bulbs are not the best (i.e. if the "complete" lighting fixture was super-cheap).

    BTW: Bulbs always get darker at the ends of the tube while wearing out, as the ends are operating at the highest temperatures.

  6. #6
    does this rag smell like chloroform to you? boxofrain's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Brookings, Or. USA
    Posts
    523
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    for all my damp area applications, I use a good smear of dielectric grease on the connections.
    Never expect a full life from a bulb used in a greenhouse with high humidity.
    "the memories of a man in his old age, are the deeds of a man in his prime"

  7. #7
    Getting There...
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Madison, WI USA
    Posts
    799
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Sorry just got back. I purchased a 2nd completely new fixture. And I got 2 2 ft Sylvnaia Daylight bulbs...same bulbs as I use in my same older lighting ballast.
    I hope this answers your questions!

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •