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lights not working PLEASE READ HELP!!!

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by perfectlawncare, Jun 22, 2008.

  1. perfectlawncare

    perfectlawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 120

    Hey guys I put in a 1100 watt system with all cast bullet lights 35w and I used a Pantech 1200w trans. The lights came on 1st night no problem and the 2nd night the didnt. So i switched out the trans with an MDL 1200w trans and a new timer and this time they worked for 2 nights and they stoped working. Both times the program was lost in the timer. Now my elec guy who put in the recep jumped it from a furnice under the house all on a 15amp circuit but the circuit never trips so I am lost... Should I 1 put the trans on a sep 20amp circuit 2 replace some of my bulbs to 20w to lower the load or 3 put in a 1500w trans. All my home runs are ran with 10ga wire. PLEASE HELP this customer is so pissed.. Thanks guys for your help..
  2. extlights

    extlights LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 439

    Are you using a photocell also or just a timer? If the breaker isn't tripping anywhere (meaning the main panel, the outlet, or on the transformer) and you're simply just using a timer I would think that your timers went bad. Sounds like it should be a pretty easy fix.
  3. klkanders

    klkanders LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 848

    Some questions for you,
    How many 10ga home runs?
    Distance of each home run?
    Distance to first fixture on each run?
    Number of fixtures on each run?
    Amp and voltage readings?
    Do you happen to have a diagram of how everything is laid out?
    Do you actually need 35w lamps?
    1200w trans at 80% is 960 watts
    1500w trans at 80% is 1200 watts

    The answer to some or all of these questions should lead to an answer.
  4. perfectlawncare

    perfectlawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 120

    i replaced 2 timers should i go to an analog one. i ve never replaced the photo cell
  5. perfectlawncare

    perfectlawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 120

    4 home runs

    all readings check out

    no i dont need all 35w thats why i was thinking about switching to 20w bulbs

    60 ft is my longest home run
  6. extlights

    extlights LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 439

    4 Homeruns on 1100 watts? Anyway.....I still think it's a timer or photocell problem. If you haven't checked the photocell you might want to try that. We've had a lot of photocells fail prematurely over the years.
  7. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 6,462

    30 lights on 4 home runs???! am i adding that properly? When you bypass the timer are they coming on? if so its the timer. what brand of timers are you using? or the fact that your using only 4 runs for that amount of lights.
  8. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    time out... back up Jason.

    He pulled you a recptical to run a 1200w trans (10amps) off the furnance line which is rated for 15amps ? soooooo what happens when that furnace and the lights come on at the same time ? so a 10a draw for my stuff I ALWAYS get a dedicated line.

    Are you sure there is nothing switching the line and your line voltage is ALWAYS hot ? Simple thing to do would be bypass the photocell and set your timer for 2 min ahead and see if the lights come on.

    Anyways your numbers are not accurate. You got 31.4 lights @35w to add up to 1100 ? Or do you have 1050w?? Whats your primary amps ? Your incoming voltage ??? If the voltage falls flat on its face for some reason your relay wont be closing inside the trans.

    im willing to bet the prob is in the line voltage. Is there some kind of thermal protector around the furnace wiring ? Sounds like its time to find a new electrician. Again primary voltage ??????

    I think the client is pissed because you and I have discussed what you charge and he should be expecting and should of gotten a nice system that operates like it should.
  9. klkanders

    klkanders LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 848

    Sorry it took me so long to get back. I see others have stepped in.
    I agree your system should have its own dedicated GFI.
    Check the line voltage as Billy stated and or run system without timer and photocell to narrow it down.
    Too few home runs for that many fixtures and wattages. I believe the max is 288 and you were at 280?
    It would be a more efficient system with more home runs and or lower wattage lamps.

    Keep us posted on the outcome!
    Good Luck!
  10. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    Im still scratching my head about not needing 35w but you installed them anyways.

    I didnt even do the math til just now about how many watts you had on your lines. This system needs to be reinstalled from the breaker panel to the lamps. Sorry to break it to ya but the system is unsafe as described.:nono::nono:

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