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Old 06-06-2009, 11:47 AM   #1
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


Hi folks after 5 years running the ultraviolet bulb went dark . I replaced it with an exact same bulb it blew right away. At $30.00 a pop I'm a little gun shy to place the second one in. Can a bad ballast blow the bulb and how best to check it. Thanks Mike

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Old 06-06-2009, 01:48 PM   #2
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


Not sure about the ballast (we have a few electricians surfing here who may know) but you CANNOT get finger grease on those bulbs and the socket of it needs to be seated firmly into the holder. Loose connection may have overamped it. They are supposed to be replaced yearly or these lose effectiveness.

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Old 06-06-2009, 02:05 PM   #3
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


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Hi folks after 5 years running the ultraviolet bulb went dark . I replaced it with an exact same bulb it blew right away. At $30.00 a pop I'm a little gun shy to place the second one in. Can a bad ballast blow the bulb and how best to check it. Thanks Mike
They are pretty easy to check. Check the two poles on one end with a ohm meter for continuity and the two poles on the other end the same way. Open or infinite resistance means it is bad. Everything between the two ends is just gas. If the bulb has a gas leak (rare) it will also fail, but most times one end or the other is burnt through.
Did you also change the starter? Always a good idea, they often fail before the bulb does. I tend to buy starters that are matched to the bulb wattage or have a narrow watt rating rather than the universal type starters with a broad watt rating.
If the ballast fails they most often fail open, I really can't remember one causing the bulb to blow, as long as the watt rating on the ballast matches the bulb (or is close).
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Old 06-06-2009, 03:51 PM   #4
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


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bulb went dark
exact same bulb it blew right away.
Seems like you cured the symptom and not the root cause, which I'd guess is the ballast, but for the money and for the price of a starter I'd replace that also. I doubt it can be the wiring, but if some lights in your house are way brighter than normal you may have a bad neutral connection in your load center which is giving you overvoltage.
$30 is riding on your gamble. Place your bet!

A ballast converts the (constant) voltage source of an outlet into a (constant) current source, and I know from experience that if your ballast has become a voltage source it will kill your lamp.
Checking a ballast independent of the lamp is pretty tricky.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 06-06-2009 at 04:01 PM.
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:04 PM   #5
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


If you had that UV light on 24/7 for 5 years.

Don't bother to change it now. They are usually only good for 9000 to 12,000 hours.

Considering a year has 8,760 hours in it. It stopped doing anything effective around 4 years ago.
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:08 PM   #6
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


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Hi folks after 5 years running the ultraviolet bulb went dark . I replaced it with an exact same bulb it blew right away. At $30.00 a pop I'm a little gun shy to place the second one in. Can a bad ballast blow the bulb and how best to check it. Thanks Mike
You don't say where you live, but that can have an influence on your problem.

I sell UV Lamps (lots of them, 106 in 2008), and my biggest problem area is coastal Florida. Most of my burnouts come from that area. There is a higher then average amount of utility power spikes in Florida then we see in other states. Power spikes are the bane of UV bulbs. Beyond this area, and other than an occasional lighting storm hit, the lamps that we sell (Triatomics (BlueTube) have been trouble free.

Depending on the model of light, some are designed for extended voltage ranges. Usually the 24 volt are the problem. We have lights that have a very tight range of voltage around 24 volts. These are usually the more economical lights. Then we have the extended power packs (ballast) that are designed to take up to 34 volts. These usually do not see the burnout problems that the less expensive lights do. And the 110volt lamps are almost trouble free regarding burnout from power spike.

I can't communicate with you because you are a new poster and forum rules, but I would be happy to try to answer any of your questions.

Good luck

Jay
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:12 PM   #7
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


Beenthere is right. ( I missed that on first read). Most 1 year bulbs are replaced between the end of the first and second year. A two year bulb, between the 2nd that 3rd years.

A 4 year old bulb is just light and very little UV activity is happening. You need to consider a UV lamp like a filter and set up a reasonable exchange timing and budget accordingly.

Just because there is a light on, does not mean anyone is home
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:16 PM   #8
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A 4 year old bulb is just light and very little UV activity is happening.
Could the old bulb have clobbered the ballast, which in turn clobbered the new lamp?
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Old 06-06-2009, 04:20 PM   #9
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


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Could the old bulb have clobbered the ballast, which in turn clobbered the new lamp?
I think something (power spike) has made the ballast unstable and that is what send the proper juice to the bulb. Regardless of which came first, the chicken or the egg, expecting 4 years out of a lamp is not realistic, but since there was a new bulb introduced, I would suspect the power supply (ballast)

Also, $30 is really cheap for a replacement lamp in the 254 NM range (necessary to do any significant UV damage to viruses, mold and bacteria. Make sure that whatever you are using is effective, or it is all for not.
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Old 06-06-2009, 09:03 PM   #10
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


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If you had that UV light on 24/7 for 5 years.

Don't bother to change it now. They are usually only good for 9000 to 12,000 hours.

Considering a year has 8,760 hours in it. It stopped doing anything effective around 4 years ago.
That's funny. Cause i sell a brand that comes with a three year warranty on the bulbs!

Sanuvox.
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Old 06-06-2009, 09:11 PM   #11
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Ultraviolet bulb blown


The newer ones are coming with longer life spans then the older ones had.

5 years ago, they were just coming out with 2 year ones.
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Old 06-06-2009, 09:28 PM   #12
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The newer ones are coming with longer life spans then the older ones had.

5 years ago, they were just coming out with 2 year ones.

No, you were right the first time. Even though the units i sold had a three year warranty on the bulb they still recommended annual changing.
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Old 06-06-2009, 10:00 PM   #13
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When I first started installing them. They were all one year.
Then because of how hard it was to sell something that needed a tube change every year.
They started coming out with the 2 year ones.
But, even those became hard to sell because of the cost of the replacement tubes.
I don't even try to sell them any more. Unless someone has health issues. Or there air handler is in a cool damp location its self.

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