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Old 07-10-2013, 09:50 AM   #1
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Ballast replacement


My 20+ year old 4' - 4 tube dining room ceiling fluorescent fixture has been lighting intermittently lately. I replaced the bulbs but still sometimes it lights and sometimes it doesn't light at all. None of the wiring has been disturbed since I put this fixture up over 20 years ago so I suspect the ballasts may be going on it. It uses 2 Advance R2S35-4-TP ballasts which I cannot find anywhere. Is the Advance R2S40TP ballast the proper replacement? The first 2 photos are my fixture, the next 2 photos are the R2S40-1-TP ballasts that are both Mark II energy savers. I guessing they are the same ballasts? The oak fixture itself still looks new and I would hate to have to replace it.
Thanks,
Larry
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:38 AM   #2
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Ballast replacement


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Originally Posted by Larryh86GT View Post
My 20+ year old 4' - 4 (T12) tube dining room ceiling fluorescent fixture...
(currently) uses 2 Advance R2S35-4-TP (magnetic) ballasts which I cannot find anywhere.
Look for a current production T8 electronic ballast.
Get some tombstones too.
Follow the schematic on the ballast.


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Old 07-10-2013, 11:07 AM   #3
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Ballast replacement


If you must stay with T12, you will need and most likely can only get electronic ballasts.
I have several 96" fixtures in my basement and each one that goes out, gets a new electronic ballast.
The wiring is NOT the same. So you must look at the new electronic ballast and use the diagram on it.

However. How do you know you have a bad ballast or ballasts?
It is very rare to see both ballasts go out out the very same time.

I would check all the connections including the connections you cannot see. The tombstone connections.
Since each ballast is present for two lamps and you have four lamps, how do you know which ballast it is? Or if its a ballast issue at all?
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Old 07-10-2013, 11:38 AM   #4
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Ballast replacement


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Originally Posted by J. V. View Post
If you must stay with T12, you will need and most likely can only get electronic ballasts.
I have several 96" fixtures in my basement and each one that goes out, gets a new electronic ballast.
The wiring is NOT the same. So you must look at the new electronic ballast and use the diagram on it.

However. How do you know you have a bad ballast or ballasts?
It is very rare to see both ballasts go out out the very same time.

I would check all the connections including the connections you cannot see. The tombstone connections.
Since each ballast is present for two lamps and you have four lamps, how do you know which ballast it is? Or if its a ballast issue at all?
I don't know for a fact that the ballasts are bad, just assuming they are as I have not touched any of the connections or wiring in the fixture. Just now I turned the fixture on - 1 side (2 bulbs) went on dimly, then about 15 seconds later all the bulbs lit correctly. Would this be a connection issue? Would someone explain why go to a T8 ballast vs staying with a T12? What are the tombstone connections? They sound omminous. When I am more educated I will have my electrician do the fixing.
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Old 07-10-2013, 12:10 PM   #5
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Ballast replacement


Tombstones-

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Old 07-10-2013, 12:13 PM   #6
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Ballast replacement


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Originally Posted by Larryh86GT View Post
I don't know for a fact that the ballasts are bad...
The point is that the fixture is TWENTY years old. If you're going to keep using it then it's worth fixing up which means opening it up and 'touching' everything inside it... making that time & effort worthwhile means going the next step to updating the HIGHLY inefficient ballasts and tubes even if the ballast wasn't as old as it is.

Tombstones are the fittings the tube mounts to.
At 20 years they too will be brittle.

Open that youtube link above.
It's not all that hard.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:03 PM   #7
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Ballast replacement


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Originally Posted by TarheelTerp View Post
The point is that the fixture is TWENTY years old. If you're going to keep using it then it's worth fixing up which means opening it up and 'touching' everything inside it... making that time & effort worthwhile means going the next step to updating the HIGHLY inefficient ballasts and tubes even if the ballast wasn't as old as it is.

Tombstones are the fittings the tube mounts to.
At 20 years they too will be brittle.

Open that youtube link above.
It's not all that hard.
Thanks, I have watched the YouTube link. My tombstone fittings look to be all intact (and I am learning new things after all these years of changing fixtures, bulbs I never knew they were called tombstone connectors - and I don't mind learning a bit more so lets keep going here) , there's no breakage anyplace, all the bulbs fit in correctly. When the lights do finally all go on after they have been on awhile if I turn the fixture off then it back on the lights come back on right away. Does this sound like the ballasts are bad rather than a wiring or connector issue? If I went with the T8 ballast would I have to replace the tombstone connectors or just the bulbs? Could I replace my 2 T12 ballast for just 1 T8 ballast for 4 bulbs? I was hoping to stay with the T12 bulbs as I have a supply of them to use and they are somewhat pricey but I could use those up on the other 3 T12 fixtures I have in the house. But if I did stay with T12 that brings me back to my original question of what the replacement ballast I should use? Is the R2S40-1-TP Mark III energy saver ballast the correct one?

Last edited by Larryh86GT; 07-10-2013 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:10 PM   #8
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Ballast replacement


When I've replaced out of production ballasts, I took the old ballasts to an electrical supply house to help me find the correct replacement.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:20 PM   #9
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Ballast replacement


Upgrade your fixture to T8 lamps and use a single electronic ballast.

http://www.homedepot.com/p/GE-4-Lamp...5#.Ud1159h2mBI


More efficient and quieter.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:22 PM   #10
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Ballast replacement


w
Quote:
Originally Posted by rjniles View Post
Upgrade your fixture to T8 lamps and use a single electronic ballast.

http://www.homedepot.com/p/GE-4-Lamp...5#.Ud1159h2mBI


More efficient and quieter.
The T8 bulbs will fit the old connectors? Just plug and play after changing the ballast?
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:29 PM   #11
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Ballast replacement


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Originally Posted by Larryh86GT View Post
w

The T8 bulbs will fit the old connectors? Just plug and play after changing the ballast?
Yep! Good to go.

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