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Old 02-02-2012, 08:53 AM   #1
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


Hi -

I own an art gallery and rigged some light fixtures to light up the walls. Everything looks great other than the fact that the 75w halogen bulbs are burning out too quickly (about 3 months).

I have attached a little diagram to illustrate what I've done. Basically, I've taken 4 (6-bulb) vanity fixtures and plugged them into a regular power strip. I see how this could be too much strain on one power strip, but why are the 2-year rated bulbs burning out so quickly?

Any help would be appreciated!

Al
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Last edited by copper00; 02-02-2012 at 08:56 AM. Reason: Spelling error
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Old 02-02-2012, 08:58 AM   #2
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


Is there a lot of vibration from footsteps, etc. on a floor above?

Is the voltage a little more than the normal 120 volts?

Are the bulbs within the individual socket wattage rating for the fixture?

A slight overload in terms of total watts will reduce the voltage and lengthen the lives of the bulbs (but may cause problems such as overheating elsewhere).

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Last edited by AllanJ; 02-02-2012 at 09:01 AM.
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Old 02-02-2012, 09:12 AM   #3
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


Check the packaging again when you get some. The two year life expectancy is probably not for 2 years continuous use. In an art gallery I would imagine they are on for several hours at a time. The time rating for bulbs is usually based on an estimated hourly use per day (2-3 hours maybe). The other posibility is that the heat from the bulbs next to each other does not allow for adequate cooling which can shorten bulb life.
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Old 02-02-2012, 09:19 AM   #4
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


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Originally Posted by AllanJ View Post
Is there a lot of vibration from footsteps, etc. on a floor above?

Is the voltage a little more than the normal 120 volts?

Are the bulbs within the individual socket wattage rating for the fixture?

A slight overload in terms of total watts will reduce the voltage and lengthen the lives of the bulbs (but may cause problems such as overheating elsewhere).
Hi Allan -

The fixtures are installed inside false walls (I've attached a photo). As you can see, I'm also using flexible arms that I purchased from Home Depot. They are a bit flimsy, so there may be slight vibrations from cross winds or if the wall is touched.

Is there anything I can do at this point other that minimizing all vibration?
Are there bulbs on the market that better withstand vibration. Currently I'm using GE Reveal 75W halogen flood lights for it's clean white light.

Thanks again!
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Old 02-02-2012, 09:23 AM   #5
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


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Originally Posted by danpik View Post
Check the packaging again when you get some. The two year life expectancy is probably not for 2 years continuous use. In an art gallery I would imagine they are on for several hours at a time. The time rating for bulbs is usually based on an estimated hourly use per day (2-3 hours maybe). The other posibility is that the heat from the bulbs next to each other does not allow for adequate cooling which can shorten bulb life.

Well, I this is a big "DUH" moment on my part. I did just read the packaging and it does indeed say based on "4 hour consumer use." I suppose I shouldn't be leaving the lights on 24 hours per day then!
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Old 02-02-2012, 09:40 AM   #6
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


At 24 hours per day each calendar day equals 6 days of use towards the 2 years. 730/6 = 121 days. Three months on the nose.
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:14 AM   #7
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


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At 24 hours per day each calendar day equals 6 days of use towards the 2 years. 730/6 = 121 days. Three months on the nose.

At this rate I'll be spending $300 every 3 months just for lightbulbs! Does anyone know a cheaper source than Home Depot for Reveal bulbs?
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:19 AM   #8
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


Why are you leaving the bulbs on 24/7? Is the gallery open those hours?
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:29 AM   #9
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


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Why are you leaving the bulbs on 24/7? Is the gallery open those hours?

No, just 10am-6pm. The switch is in an inconvenient place, so I'm just too lazy to shut them off most of the time. Now that I've been enlightened, I'll be turning them off before I leave!
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:33 AM   #10
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


Install a timer. No need to access a switch.
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:38 AM   #11
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


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Install a timer. No need to access a switch.

Aaaaahhhh, haven't thought of that...Thank you Jim!
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:13 AM   #12
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Bulbs burning out too quickly


Don't forget the electrical consumption, almost 30 additional kilowatt hours per day (almost 1000 kwh per month) while the gallery is closed when you left the lights on all night.

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Last edited by AllanJ; 02-02-2012 at 11:15 AM.
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