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Light bulbs keep blowing

Discussion in 'Electrical Engineering' started by Peter, Jan 11, 2007.

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  1. Peter

    Peter Guest

    I have a question regarding constant blowing of light bulbs.

    My friend's father works in an old factory where the electricity is 480
    volts stepped down to 120 for the lights. At times the voltage can increase
    or decrease due to heavy equipment within the building turning on and off.

    It's believed these spikes (and decreases) have contributed to the large
    number of blown bulbs (the long factory type light bulbs).


    My question is: is there a device that can be placed onto the light bulb
    line that will reduce these fluctuations? Say something that would hold the
    voltage at 120 during spikes and supply voltage during lower voltages to
    reduce the number of bulbs blowing? Also, there are balaces (spelling?) in
    these fixtures, so any componenent can't interfere with the balace.


    Any discussions would be appreciated. Especially if anyone has theory input
    to this problem since it involves many ways to possibly fix the problem.
    I'd assume a capacitor will fix the decreased voltages and some sort of
    regular to reduce spikes, but would one decide an adequete device and have
    it cost effective? A store bought device would be the best solution, so if
    anyone knows of one, please let me know.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. TimPerry

    TimPerry Guest

    try a test. use a device like a Sola power conditioner
    http://www.solaheviduty.com/products/powerconditioning/index.htm
    on a bank of lights. put all new bulbs in for the test. put all new bulbs in
    another zone as a control. see which zone has more problems.
    some sort of ballast is usually a part of a florescent light fixture.
    it is possible that whoever is buying supplies is simply buying the rock
    bottom cheapest lamp possible then scratching his head wondering why they
    don't last very long. at one of my facilities the new high efficiency
    fluorescents don't seem to last long. even the new electronic ballasts fail
    with annoying regularity.
     
  3. no

    no Guest

    I assume that you mean fluorescent tubes and ballasts?

    AFAIK, these things are pretty much unaffected by poor quality supplies
    - by their very nature they stabilise the voltage across the tube
    itself. Only if the voltage is dropping low enough to cause the lamp to
    go out should this affect lamp life, due to increased restarting (IIUC,
    one start reduces lamp life by about 15 minutes).

    Buy better quality tubes, perhaps?
     
  4. MassiveProng

    MassiveProng Guest

    I don't see a reason for this to be true, but I suppose it is
    possible.

    We have IR office and even hallway lights that rarely get switched on
    or off by actual hands. They cycle all the time. Perhaps bulb brand
    is the culprit.
     
  5. TimPerry

    TimPerry Guest

    a new outdoor sign illuminated with 4' fluorescents. the bulbs were not
    lasting 30 days. a photo controller had been installed an it turned out that
    passing car and truck headlight at night were turning the sign off and
    on.... not enough delay i guess. running the lights 7-24 fixed the problem.
    web research turns up a variety of articles.

    http://www.lightingdesignlab.com/articles/switching/switching_fluorescent.htm

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluorescent_lamp

    http://tristate.apogee.net/lite/bltfluo.asp
     
  6. Work out the load and put in a suitably sized UPS this will also provide
    emergency lighting when you have a power failure

    Gavin
     
  7. Guest

    |
    |>simplest solution. I have had excellent results using some rather primitive,
    |>yet robust equipment manufactured by "Delta Surge Arrestors".
    |>http://www.deltala.com/ These guys make surge and lightening arrestors and
    |>a bunch of other stuff. Very cheap, very effective, and robust.
    |
    | I noticed from their website they make arrestors for 762 volt service
    | "for 762 Volt Oilfield Applications" I never heard of such service.
    | A while back there was a topic for different types of services available.
    | Here's another one.
    |
    | It makes sense, sort of, if the 762V is phase-phase, the phase-neutral
    | voltage would be 440 volts. You could use 440 volt delta connected
    | motors or other devices if rewired in a wye configuration.
    |
    | Not sure why it's not shown as 831 volts (phase-neutral 480V).

    Probably for traditional reasons like you see a lot of stuff listed as
    440 volts or 460 volts instead of 480 volts.
     
  8. Guest

    | MassiveProng wrote:
    |> On Thu, 11 Jan 2007 07:49:13 +0000, no <> Gave us:
    |>
    |>> (IIUC,
    |>> one start reduces lamp life by about 15 minutes).
    |>
    |> I don't see a reason for this to be true, but I suppose it is
    |> possible.
    |
    | a new outdoor sign illuminated with 4' fluorescents. the bulbs were not
    | lasting 30 days. a photo controller had been installed an it turned out that
    | passing car and truck headlight at night were turning the sign off and
    | on.... not enough delay i guess. running the lights 7-24 fixed the problem.

    Point photo sensor straight up from a height with a cone shield.

    Or just use a timer and an almanac.
     
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