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Fluorescent tube wall lights

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john halfpenny22/11/2020 15:49:24
79 forum posts
13 photos

20201122_153711.jpgI have a dozen of these inside and out. Some work just fine, but others switch themselves off after a period, seemingly at random. If I cut the power they work again after a few minutes rest - but go off again a few minutes later. A couple no longer work, but the interior shows no damage and the tubes are good.

Is this fixable? Pictures show the exterior, and the interior of a dead lamp (water ingress) with one tube missing. I don't expect to fix this one.

20201122_153629.jpg

SillyOldDuffer22/11/2020 16:25:01
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6469 forum posts
1422 photos

Had the same symptoms with one of my garage lights last winter. Pretty sure it was due to an intermittent contact between tube and socket. On my lamp the contacts are flimsy bits of bent springy copper, probably too flimsy.

I think one of the pins lost contact when the lamp heated up and reconnected after cooling down. Repositioning the lamp slightly in the socket contacts a few times fixed mine. No problem with it since.

Dave

J Hancock22/11/2020 16:28:14
480 forum posts

Are tubes horizontal or vertical ?

You might try them horizontally to see if it makes a difference.

It seems a temperature gradient is the only factor affecting the tubes.

john halfpenny22/11/2020 17:01:01
79 forum posts
13 photos

Some are vertical, and some horizontal. The latter, which are indoors, suffer more from self extinguishing, so I'll try some ventilation. I'll also check the contacts. Presumably one of the electrical components is acting as a heat sensitive switch?

Robert Atkinson 229/11/2020 09:55:36
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825 forum posts
17 photos
Posted by john halfpenny on 22/11/2020 17:01:01:

Some are vertical, and some horizontal. The latter, which are indoors, suffer more from self extinguishing, so I'll try some ventilation. I'll also check the contacts. Presumably one of the electrical components is acting as a heat sensitive switch?

These lights don't look great quality or very safe with the electronics exposed. Rather than repairing them I'd strip out the tubes and electronics and fit one or two LED lamps in place of the tubes. E14 / SES candle style lamps should work OK.

Robert G8RPI.

Clive Hartland29/11/2020 10:02:57
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2618 forum posts
40 photos

Mmm, ventilation, I did that with a wall light and come the Summer it started to be a home for Thunderbugs. The next time I opened it up it was full of the little blighters all dead.

John Haine29/11/2020 10:22:18
3429 forum posts
184 photos

You may be able to get LED "tubes" to replace the fluorescents, though the starter will need changing. A good source of these is **LINK**. I replaced all the fluorescents in our kitchen, my workshop, two studios and a passageway buying a box of 20. They are brilliant in at least two senses, very bright, come on instantly, completely quiet, and cheaper to run.

David Colwill29/11/2020 10:42:00
679 forum posts
34 photos
Posted by John Haine on 29/11/2020 10:22:18:

You may be able to get LED "tubes" to replace the fluorescents, though the starter will need changing. A good source of these is **LINK**. I replaced all the fluorescents in our kitchen, my workshop, two studios and a passageway buying a box of 20. They are brilliant in at least two senses, very bright, come on instantly, completely quiet, and cheaper to run.

Plus 1 smile p

john halfpenny29/11/2020 10:45:01
79 forum posts
13 photos

Robert, I took off the internal circuit board cover to see if exposure would solve the problem; it didn't. I like the LED solution John- could either of you give a little more guidance. Presumably I need bulb, bulb holder and some sort of driver circuit? I can solder and wire components competently, but electronics is not my strong point. I guess it may even be cheaper to change for complete LED lamps?

John Haine29/11/2020 11:38:55
3429 forum posts
184 photos

Ledkia sell a range of tubes that are drop-in replacements for standard fluorescents. The only slight snag is that they don't use a standard starter so there's a bit of rewiring needed. Actually they don't need a starter at all. So if your lights use tubes in the standard range it should be easy. Your photo looks like they have a sort of U shaped tube, or two straight bits with the electrodes at the bottom and a small port formed at the top for the discharge to pass through. Just browse the website to see what they have. I'm sure there are other suppliers - Google is your friend.

Robert Atkinson 229/11/2020 12:23:26
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825 forum posts
17 photos
Posted by john halfpenny on 29/11/2020 10:45:01:

Robert, I took off the internal circuit board cover to see if exposure would solve the problem; it didn't. I like the LED solution John- could either of you give a little more guidance. Presumably I need bulb, bulb holder and some sort of driver circuit? I can solder and wire components competently, but electronics is not my strong point. I guess it may even be cheaper to change for complete LED lamps?

As the existing Electronic ballasts are faulty I would NOT use plug in replacements for the U shaped tubes. They are also fairly expensive. about £8 each. If you do use them get branded like these made by phillips:

https://www.ledbulbs.co.uk/products/philips-6-5w-led-g24d-2-pl-c-warm-white-54127200
BUT CHECK THE SIZE I don't know what is in there already, length, 2 pin or 4 pin. Other suppliers available.

Remove the existing ballast (circuit board) completly and wire mains supply directly to holder.

I would just get a couple of E14 (SES) lampholders and mains LED candle style lamps and fit them, again remove the ballast circuit boards. if there is room you could fit standard BC holders and lamps.

I would not bother with low voltage lamps and converters.

Robert G8RPI.

Edited By Robert Atkinson 2 on 29/11/2020 12:25:04

john halfpenny29/11/2020 18:46:43
79 forum posts
13 photos

Thank you Robert. There appears to be only one or two suppliers of 4 pin led substitutes, and as you say quite expensive at two per lamp. The lamps are very low profile, so I have opted for complete led replacements, and will mix and match the remainder to keep me going. John

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