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I’m working on a bunch of pole lights that are 400w metal halide. The voltage is 480v. The old ballasts had an igniter with em. The new ones do not have an igniter, just a cap. The new ballast kit and lamps I’ve got are both m59. I wired one up and it trips the breaker immediately. Checked for ground faults on the ballast already nothing is faulted to ground. Any suggestions?


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Wrong input voltage on the ballast? Wrong label?
 

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With out picture its hard to tell. 480v is generally special order as no one wants to make them so i would check the label first.

The other typical problems include

1/ bad wire up the pole (you moved this around wiring in the new ballast)
2/ mis-wired as people forget common on 480v is a phase (happens more often on a photo cell)
3/ lamp holder shorted to ground

p.s why trip the breaker when fuses and fuse holders are cheap and make troubleshooting in the future so much easier.
 

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This post reminded me of my favorite code question:
What is the minimum height of a high pressure sodium luminaire with a 480 volt ballast in a parking lot?
 

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This post reminded me of my favorite code question:
What is the minimum height of a high pressure sodium luminaire with a 480 volt ballast in a parking lot?
So what is the answer?
 

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Any suggestions?


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Yeah. Next time, don't assume :)

You wired it up and the breaker tripped. That means the fault was existing.
When a breaker trips you first find the source of the fault. Often it is a ballast but, even if you narrow it down to one pole, there are still a few other opportunities for the wiring to be bad.

PS. I ALWAYS hated 480V light poles. You are often (usually) working on them alone and hot and I don't like the idea of dealing with 480 volts installed by who knows who, inside a steel enclosure, right at eye level, 20 feet off the ground, standing in a little bucket. Simply opening the cover and pulling on the wires can cause you to at least schit yourself.
 
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