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How do I find a short in dawn to dusk lights?

Discussion in 'Equipment & Supplies' started by Alison, Jul 29, 2018.

  1. Jul 29, 2018
    Alison

    Alison Chillin' with the herd

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    Hello:

    I have three dawn to dusk lights out in the farm yard. Recently they have been shutting off, power back on, shut off, power back on, etc. all night. I suspect there is a short somewhere, but 1) how do I figure out where and 2) then what do I do? I had an electrician come out and he said he didn't think there was a short. Honestly I don't think he really looked and I don't want to pay him to come out again until I know what the issue is.

    Thanks!!
     
  2. Jul 29, 2018
    greybeard

    greybeard Herd Master

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    Line voltage or solar/battery?

    Either way, the usual cause is light from the bulbs being reflected back to the light sensor and turning the thing off but low voltage (which causes high current) makes the overload trip then resets, then trips/resets etc etc can also cause it. If all 3 lights began malfunctioning at the same time, and nothing has changed in regards to other light affecting the sensor, I would suspect voltage problems unless something new has happened in regards to how much artificial light is being seen by the sensors..

    Another problem comes if the lights have a ballast. They can overheat and trip off..been pretty hot lately.
    1. Place a piece of black tape over each of the light sensors and see if the lights work correctly.
    2. Check incoming voltage to the lights.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2018
  3. Apr 10, 2019
    Rammy

    Rammy Herd Master Golden Herd Member

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    Biy a new one and replace it.
     
    B&B Happy goats likes this.
  4. Apr 11, 2019
    greybeard

    greybeard Herd Master

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    Could get expensive to replace 3 of them and the likelihood that all 3 failed at the same time is very low.
    (9 months have passed since Alison's query. I suspect it has been resolved one way or another)
     
  5. May 20, 2019
    goatboy1973

    goatboy1973 True BYH Addict Golden Herd Member

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    You need a new photocell and while you are at it, go ahead and replace the bulbs. Just unplug the photocells and a bulb and take it with you to Lowe's or Home Depot and show it to someone in that department so that you get the correct replacement. I had the same problem and it was the photocell and the bulb. It hardly ever is a voltage issue. If you installed all 3 lights at the same time then this is probably why all 3 had issues at the same time.