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intermittent lamp then failure. halogen pin burnt


wyntech

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hi, we are a small school and my work is primarily sound. We use a small portable light rig (x2 showbar 4 dimmers) on stands for school plays.

 

during a play, early on in proceedings, one of the lamps became intermittent and finally gave out. We suspected loose wires but all checked out ok.

 

I found the halogen bulb could be pushed a tad further into it's housing in the lamp body and that one of the pins showed burning on one side.

 

would partial insertion cause a sort of 'arcing' and burning with consequent failure? or should I be suspecting something else

 

Halogen 575W 240V

 

cheers in advance

 

steve

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Arcing between pin and holder is actually a fairly common failure mode in fixtures. It's important not to put a lamp with damaged pins into another fixture with a good holder, since it will then suffer arcing damage too.

 

The fix is to replace the lampholder and replace the lamp with a new one.

 

Resist the temptation to "salvage" the lamp with damaged pins since it will inevitably get used in another light and damage it.

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The lamp holder gets hot and sometimes the springs weaken on the contacts, then both sides of the contact burn. Replace the lamp AND the holder, the holder will destroy all subsequent lamps with increasing speed. Use a hammer to prevent either the burned holder or the lamp being re-used as the fault is cyclic a burned lamp will burn the holder which will burn the next lamp.

 

Prepare to replace all the similar holders of similar age.

 

Check that any cooling slots (etc) are clear as general overheating is the usual start of this.

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There are also those who dont realise that many lamps have asymetric size pins. An attempt is made to put it in the wrong way round that widens the narrow hole. Either the unit limps on until the smaller pin arcs away or when a bulb is put in the right way the hole is too large anyway!
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Yes, the cause could be old age, lamp inserted wrong way round, lamp not inserted fully, or wrong type of lamp tried/used.

 

No matter what the cause, both the lamp holder and the lamp should be replaced. Replacing the lamp holder is fairly simple, but cant be recomended for the complete novice.

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