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Florescent fixture problem #45701 12/05/04 03:16 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 30
ameterguy Offline OP
I had an electrician install 5 2x2 troffer fixtures in my cellar drop ceilings, these use two u-shaped 34 watt bulbs. (The fixture are Liothonia lighting, sold at Home Depot.) The fixtures are on three different circuits, two circuits have two fixtures and the third circuit has one fixture.

The fixture are all acting up, delayed starting, up to 10 - 15 seconds or they do not come on at all. The electrician has checked the wiring and remade all the wiring connections, resat the bulbs, etc.

What should be checked next? What can I have my electrician do next?

Any help would be greatly appreciated


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Re: Florescent fixture problem #45702 12/05/04 03:54 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 186
NJ Wireman Offline
Well lets see a couple of things.

#1 is the basement heated?

#2 Are the fixtures new or used?

#3 What else if anything is one each of the circuits?

#4Are the ballest humming or getting hot?

Re: Florescent fixture problem #45703 12/05/04 04:44 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 914
Electric Eagle Offline
Try new bulbs.
Check the grounding.
Are the correct bulbs being used? They make U shaped bulbs in T8 and T12?

Re: Florescent fixture problem #45704 12/05/04 06:01 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 30
ameterguy Offline OP
NJ Wireman,

The basement is heated.

The fixtures are new, been in use 3 - 4 wks.

The fixtures replaced the existing pullchain fixtures that were originally installed in the cellar ceiling, when the house was built. Two circuits are on bedroom receptical circuits and the third is on the living room receptical circuits.

The ballast are not humming, but they get a little warm. Electrician said that was normal.

Electric Eagle,
The Electrician verified the grounding at the fixtures and in all boxes all the way back to the panel. All was tight, but he replaced all connections anyway.

I verified the bulbs are correct, but I have not tried replacing them. I will try that this week.

Do you think the bulbs are the problem? Or could it be the ballasts? (I will try bulbs first, as there are cheaper.)


Re: Florescent fixture problem #45705 12/05/04 06:15 PM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 803
mxslick Offline

If you're using the green-ended "eco-friendly" bulbs, that's most likely the problem. The very low mercury content makes them hard-starting. Replace 'em with standard tubes.

Stupid should be painful.
Re: Florescent fixture problem #45706 12/05/04 06:53 PM
Joined: Oct 2001
Posts: 172
watthead Offline
Get some sylvania lamps. Call lithonia and tell them you heard that would solve the problem and see what they say. I am not usually not brand loyal on fluorescents, as any of the big three (GE,Philips,Sylvania) will do. In certian cases with the u-bends the sylvania just work better.

Re: Florescent fixture problem #45707 12/05/04 07:04 PM
Joined: Sep 2001
Posts: 806
NJwirenut Offline
The U-bend bulbs usually have a foil tape strip that runs along the inside of the "U". If this strip is damaged or missing, the lamps can be hard starters. The strip should be grounded by contact with the retaining clip that holds the closed end of the "U".

Re: Florescent fixture problem #45708 12/05/04 08:53 PM
Joined: Dec 2003
Posts: 886
hbiss Offline
Talked about this before. I pulled my hair out over this same problem. The solution was new lamps from a DIFFERENT manufacturer. The ones giving me problems were Phillips, brand new right out of TWO different cases. Problem went away with GE.


Re: Florescent fixture problem #45709 12/05/04 09:03 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 914
Electric Eagle Offline
Thread Jack:
What do you guys do with your old tubes? Until recently I didn't know that they contain mercury so I just tossed them. Now I don't know what to do with them.

Re: Florescent fixture problem #45710 12/06/04 12:17 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 156
kinetic Offline
What do you do with the old ballasts as well? I never knew about either until recently but where are they supposed to end up?

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