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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    Question CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    Just bought a house and the previous owner had one of those timed light socket adapters screwed into the light socket on his garage so the light would automaticaly come on at dusk and turn off at dawn. I put a CFL bulb in there and it does nothing but flicker! I can take the adapter out, put the CFL back in and it's fine....Also when the CFL is in the adapter if I put my hands near where it screws in to the socket the flickering stops. Take my hands away and it starts again. Can you tell me why it might be doing this? A regular bulb won't do this, just the CFL and only when plugged in to the adapter...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    These sensors and also regular dimmers are for the ordinary old fashion light bulbs only, not for CFLs.

    If you want your light from dusk to dawn, install a regular bulb. Also, make sure the photo eye faces the light source.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    Thanx, I wonder if they do make them for CFLs, because the whole purpose of using one if it was going to be on all night was to conserve energy, thus why I took out the regular bulb and replaced it with a CFL in the first place
    Would suck if I can't use it with a CFL because I have never seen a sensored light before and thought it was very neat! Thank you for the info
    Last edited by DayC; 02-11-2012 at 01:47 AM. Reason: typo

  4. #4
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    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    They must make them. I've never used one myself, but go to lighting places or supply stores and get one.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    1,387

    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    Howdy i understand why regular CFL no work in a dimmer- dim-able CFLs readily available. But why a photo cell wired ahead of the fixture would affect a CFL? Does a photo cell not turn power on an off like a switch?
    Any an all of my comments are just my opinion and not to be confused with facts.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    251

    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    I think it depends on the type of relay used in the photocell. I forget the different types.

    ON my post light out front, I don't have any issues with a CFL... although this spring I'm going to switch to a LED because I've heard LED"s don't put out UV spectrum light so they don't attract bugs, or at least a lot less. The only issue I've had is that it won't turn on below 15F. But that's because it's not rated specifically for outdoor use.
    1925 Two-Story Stucco Beaux Arts Neoclassical

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    4

    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    See, that's another problem...Finding a CFL, or even an LED for that matter that is rated for the cold! Talked to a hardware guy and he assured me that a CFL could be used....Until he read on the box of several motion sensors/dusk to dawn etc that infact CFLs can not be used. He at least thanked me because he learned something new! lol...So...Do you think a dimable CFL would work? But again finding one that is rated for the cold weather...*sigh* Might just have to go for a motion sensor light instead of the dusk to dawn ones because if I can't find a CFL/LED to be on all night I'll settle for an *old fashioned* light bulb in a motion sensor

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    I have an outdoor flood lamp cfl in a motion detector fixture & it works fine,except in the cold it is very dim until it warms up. Okay in the summer, spring & fall, but not in the winter. I suspect a cfl that is dimmable would work. Or look for an outdoor rated lamp, since outside lights are often on motion detector or timed circuits.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    That's right...until they get their act together, use the incandescent bulbs.

    I stocked up on those, to last me for a while.

    I remember when the code for 1/2" anchor bolts and washer was changed from round washers to square washers. Trouble was that nobody had square washers for sale. This stopped my construction back then for a week...even the inspector was frustrated.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    4

    Default Re: CFL bulb flickers in a timed light socket

    At last...I finally have an energy efficient light bulb that works with the dusk/dawn adaptor!! I ended up getting a dimable LED and voila! It is equivalent to a 40w. No flickering like the CFL, gives off the perfect ammt of light and it is -10c right now and it's still working fine! Whew!

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