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Old 12-07-2008, 09:32 AM   #1
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Default ballast check

I found the answer to my earlier question on troubleshooting ballasts at
Universal Lighting Technologies | Literature | Troubleshooting and Maintenance Guides

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Old 12-07-2008, 09:34 AM   #2
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You can also download a pdg of Advances' Fluorescent Troubleshooting Guide. (It starts on page 25)

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Old 12-07-2008, 11:45 AM   #3
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Yep, but after you go through the troubleshooting, what have you actually done? To me, the material costs are too low to support me charging for my time to deal with a light that might fail an hour after I pack up and leave. Customers don't want songs and dances, they want lights that work.

Supply voltage okay? Check.

Ground okay? Check.

Bulbs okay? Check.

Replace the ballast and the bulbs or the fixture if dealing with an old design.

Oh, my experience with electronic ballasts is telling me the ground isn't as important as it was with transformer ballasts, but I don't know if I trust that as a conclusion. I haven't dealt with very many electronic ballasts yet.
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Old 12-07-2008, 12:19 PM   #4
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Yep, but after you go through the troubleshooting, what have you actually done? To me, the material costs are too low to support me charging for my time to deal with a light that might fail an hour after I pack up and leave. Customers don't want songs and dances, they want lights that work.

Supply voltage okay? Check.

Ground okay? Check.

Bulbs okay? Check.

Replace the ballast and the bulbs or the fixture if dealing with an old design.

Oh, my experience with electronic ballasts is telling me the ground isn't as important as it was with transformer ballasts, but I don't know if I trust that as a conclusion. I haven't dealt with very many electronic ballasts yet.
Totally agree. Why turn an easy part swap into a troubleshooting session. I don't know of any successful electricians that would even consider testing a ballast. Especially when you have one in your service vehicle.

Now, If you just want to learn how to check a ballast? Go for it.
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Old 12-07-2008, 12:38 PM   #5
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Totally agree. Why turn an easy part swap into a troubleshooting session. I don't know of any successful electricians that would even consider testing a ballast. Especially when you have one in your service vehicle.

Now, If you just want to learn how to check a ballast? Go for it.
For typical 2x4 troffers, yes, a total swap is the best and cheapest. But some specialty ballasts costs hundreds of dollars, and it's well worth a small amount of time to diagnose them as the culprit.
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Old 12-07-2008, 12:44 PM   #6
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Interesting. Do you have an example of a specialty ballast? I don't know what you mean by that.
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:01 PM   #7
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i omega 12v dc drivers that retail for about 500 bucks apeice would fall into that catagory - btw do not i repeat do not install them unless the design team makes you and if they do try to get them to warrenty them
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:10 PM   #8
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Interesting. Do you have an example of a specialty ballast? I don't know what you mean by that.
Such as a sign ballast. Last one I purchased was $315.
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Old 12-07-2008, 03:36 PM   #9
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i omega 12v dc drivers that retail for about 500 bucks apeice would fall into that catagory - btw do not i repeat do not install them unless the design team makes you and if they do try to get them to warrenty them
What application would they be required and is there a viable alternative thats cheaper?

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