Premature Bulb Burn Out / Help!

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by MEXANDME, Nov 21, 2009.

  1. MEXANDME

    MEXANDME LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 396

    I have a customer where I am having premature bulb burn out problems with both MR16's and PAR36's.

    Some facts:

    All standard lights.....no LED's.
    Bulbs are Ushio 5000 hour MR16 /4000 hour PAR36
    Job was installed in July of 2009
    Lights are on dusk to dawn
    Vista MT series transformer
    All transformer connections are good and tight
    All wire connection and good and solid using King connectors
    All voltage reading are between 11.1 and 12.0 volts
    There are 13 lights and I have lost 14 bulbs since July / 12 MR16's &
    2 PAR36's
    Transformer is grounded
    Transformer is plugged into a GFCI
    Wire is Superflex

    Any thoughts / suggestion?

    If the customer is having Power surges or power spikes ( ans I have no idea whether or not they are), could that be a potential cause?

    Thanks / Regards,

    Ros
     
  2. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,170

    Problem 1: sounds like your voltage is too high.
    Problem 2: Your using Ushio bulbs. Use GE
     
  3. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,180

    Ushios seem to like mid 11v the best. The 200 GE lamps I put in the field this year seem to be doing well in the upper 11v range

    Like yourself I considered power surges We put in panel gaurds on alot of jobs but one thing I would consider doing first is double checking it with a different meter with fresh batteries. You could easily be off .3v on your readings and cause short lamp life.

    Had another system eating lamps. One day I watched one of thier kids smack the fixture with a plastic bat. Mystery solved
     
  4. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,170

    Ahh, Yes. The true nemesis of bullet lights. Thats pretty funny I experienced the same thing with one of my clients also.
     
  5. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,102

    I would install a main panel mounted surge supressor / filter there. (intermatic PanelGuard) and see how it goes. Transients, Spikes and Surges can wreak havoc on the filaments of incandescent lamps.

    I have found that Ushio lamps are more susceptible to voltage & current issues than GE lamps are.
     
  6. MEXANDME

    MEXANDME LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 396

    James,

    Would you recommend a good on-line supplier of the GE bulbs? I cannot buy in large volumes......I only use about 250-300 bulbs per year.

    Thanks / Regards,

    Ros
     
  7. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,102

    Sorry Ros, I cannot help you there. Perhaps some others on here will be able to. I buy all of my GE lamps from a local distributor. You will find that GE constant color precise MR16 lamps do cost more than most others, but they are absolutely 100% worth the extra cost.

    Would you paint a portrait for a client using 2nd grade paint?
     
  8. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,180

    for that low of a quantity I would just pick up as needed from the local lowes so you didnt have to carry a large stock. Charge your clients accordingly for the more expensive lamps.
     
  9. quackgrass

    quackgrass LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 253

    could this be a polarity issue by chance?
     
  10. MEXANDME

    MEXANDME LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 396

    Quackgrass.....No loop feeds.

    Regards,

    Ros
     

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