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Old 03-04-2006, 09:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Blown ballasts

OK, I went from one lamp out to 6 in one session. It's pretty upsetting.

So here's my dilemma. I'm a newbie and learning daily. My build out electrician was awesome. Real sharp guy. But he screwed me! I gave him the bed specs. and stressed the point of voltage at the bed etc. He reassured me we were within the voltage limits. When he came back to install the outlet plates and do the final details - I again asked him to please double check - just to be sure - he seemed mildly annoyed but I saw the meter out and on one of the beds.

Since then, I have set up the beds and have been open a few weeks now. I had set up a day that I would have additional coverage and help to fix/replace the lamp out in two beds. But the day before the above happens, I went from one lamp out in one bed to 6!!

I called the bed disty and they suggested getting an electrician out to double check the voltage and to fix the beds. They said this is a common issue with too much voltage. Well...

Guess what? The new electrician says the max draw at the outlet is 239 volts! The bed requires 215-230.

So for you electrical savvy folks out there, would 9 volts really crush the ballasts? I'm guessing an obvious YES!

Also, (please forgive me here) are the ballasts those circuit boards I see hidden under the covers? They look to control two lamps. These boards have many little circuits and relays etc. - should I expect these to be around $20 each?

But ultimately, I have complete trust and confidence in the original electrician, but how could he get it so wrong? I just don't understand how this happened and pretty upset that these beds that have so few hours are in need of repair.

BTW, I should have buck boosters in-store by Tue-Wed, I believe. The plan is we get these installed right away before I lose more beds. I really need to be impressing these folks but here I am with lamp outages and beds down. Very frustrating!

Thanks for listening & replying.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Re: Blown ballasts

I don't get this. If you have used a real electrician, there shoudl be no problem. xyz bed uses a certain reaker, and yxz bed uses another. Not rocket science. I have never blown a ballast in my units in 8 years.

If you are getting too much voltage, you might wanna get a "buck" booster.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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Re: Blown ballasts

P.S. "buck" meaning bringing the voltage sown to the proper level, and boost meaning bringing it up to the proper level.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Blown ballasts

Either you're in a building that has atypical primary voltage at 240 3 phase, or maybe you got sold buck/boost transformers for your beds? What is the make model(s) of your beds that you are haveing problems with?
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Re: Blown ballasts

Yeah, what he said, or not, but maybe.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Blown ballasts

Most commercial buildings in the US have 3 phase 208 (usually reads around 212v). If she has 240 goint to the bed, especially if it's a smaller single phase unit, then either someone boosted the voltage with a transformer (buck/booster), or this particular building has 240 3 phase coming in, and needed to be "bucked" (reduced) after the panel.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Re: Blown ballasts

I don't have buck-boosters now. I was told by the first electrician that we were within the 215-230 requirements. Wrong.

The new electrician says we are at 239 volts. Too high for the bed.

Like I was saying, I should have buck-boosters in my store by Tue-Wed.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:34 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Re: Blown ballasts

I am 3 phase 240v.
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Old 03-04-2006, 10:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Blown ballasts

Well there you go. Sue the first guy, marry the second guy, and give me some points.
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Old 03-04-2006, 11:01 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Re: Blown ballasts

So 9 volts would blow ballasts? Based on my problem - I'd say yes. Or maybe it was a surge - explaining why the others were unaffected?

Also - the circuit boards I mentioned are they the ballasts? I won't be doing the replacement this time but it would be nice to learn a few things along the way so maybe by the time the warranty is up, I can do a few things for myself.
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