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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    8

    Default Out Side Yard Lights

    Good Evening
    I have three out side mercury vapor 175 watt yard lights which I have bypassed the balance and put in a mogul blub adaptors to be able to except the standard light blub in stead of the large base like the mercury vapor. I am using 60 watt yellow incandescent blubs but I would like to go to the yellow compact fluorescent bug lights which only uses about 14 watts in stead of 60 watts per light. The problem I am running into is that the yellow compact fluorescent bug light have a balance in them and if I leave the photo cell hooked up like they are now it will shorten the life of the compact fluorescent blub by quite a bit I am being told that it is because the photo cells do not come on right away like a standard wall switch would. Is there any way around that with out having to disconnect the photo cell and put in a switch in its place? Would a timer work or all timers not instant on like a switch would be.
    To me it would be a lot of work to bypass the photo cell and put in a switch and when you are no home the lights would not be on unless some turned the switch on.
    Any help you could give me would be greatly appreciated
    Russ

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    The deep South
    Posts
    459

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Who told you that about photo cells ?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,775

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Photo cells do come on slowly unless there is a sudden change in ambient light however the lamp is not connected to the photo cell. The photo cell is connected to to an associated control circuit with a set or adjustable bias. The bias sets the point at which the circuit turns on the switch to the lamp. The switch may be mechanical or solid state but it is either on or off never slowly on or slowly off.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,775

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    First you would need to see if you have an electronic switch or an electro-mechanical switch. Some electronic switches will not work with CFL's or shorten their life. Or purchase CF L's that are rated for photo cells and electronic switches. You should not use a CF L's in a totally enclosed fixture like emergency exit lights because of heat damage to the CFL. You should also leave CF L's on for at least 3 hours at a time. Turning them on and off for short periods of time also shortens their life. If you use a timer use one with a mechanical switch. If you have a mechanical or electro-mechanical switch it is no different the an on/off switch.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Thanks Jack
    Where can I find or purchase some yellow CF L's that are rated for photo cells and electronic switches.
    Russ

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,775

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Russ, my apologies, I meant to say CFL rated photo cell or electronic switch not photocell rated CFL. If you know the model number of your photo cell you can check to see if it's CFL rated. Or use the photo cell to operat a relay to energize the light.
    Jack
    Last edited by JLMCDANIEL; 06-27-2008 at 02:13 AM.
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Good Morning
    Your help was very much appreciated for your knowledge on compable photocells with CFL

    I think I have found just what I need on the web site below

    PRECISION PHOTOCELLS ARE DESIGNED TO OPERATE WITH ALL
    COMPACT FLOURESCENT BULBS.

    http://www.precisionmulticontrols.com

    Thanks again
    Have a Great weekend
    Russ

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,775

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Good luck, by the way you didn't say where you are located. You did take the operating temperature range into consideration aslo, didn't you?
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Hey Jack
    Sorry have been away for a few days (Texas) 77447
    No I did not take the operating temperature range into consideration. Is that a big factor?
    You know I have another question I don't know if you can help me or not but I will give it a try. How and what kind of an in line meter would I use to be able to measure the Watts or Kw on my A/C unit only.
    I would like to know how many Watts or Kw my A/C unit unit uses in a 30 day peroid.Is there some sort of a inline meter that will only measure the A/C unit alone with Watts of Kw ?
    Thanks
    Russ

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,775

    Default Re: Out Side Yard Lights

    Over heating can shorten the life of a CFL and they have limited starting temp range in cold climates.

    I have seen cheap home use power usage devices but they are for 120 volts. All the 220 volt power usage devices I seen are commercial units the run several hundred dollars. Maybe someone else on here is familiar with an economical unit. 220 volt units have to be hard wired so they are usually not available for non commercial use.
    Jack
    Last edited by JLMCDANIEL; 06-30-2008 at 01:55 AM.
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

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