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Thread: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

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    100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Hello all,

    I'm having a light problem in our IGP. It's a 100W bulb fixture..The bulb went out suddenly other night. I figured a bulb burnt out so I replaced it, sealed it back up and submerged the fixture (no air bubbles), then turn on and NOTHING ! So I got another bulb (thinking maybe it was just bad), repeated the same steps and got the same answer..NOTHING! Next I figured I better text the circuit. I pulled the fixture, removed the bulb and tested the inside socket. I'm getting 12 volts at the socket. So I'm all good there also. I cleaned the inside of the socket, I get a good reading but once the bulb is in I get nothing.

    NOW..looking into the fixture I see a gel type material around the socket. Mine kinda looks brownish yellow and I was told that it should be transparent to a degree and not burnt looking. Could that be the problem ? Do I need a new fixture ? and why would I get a 12v reading at the socket if it was bad ?

    Also.. If I got to replace it, Id like to install one that has multiple color lights. I suppose LED. Any suggestions and best place to shop ?

    I know it's a lot and I really appreciate any and all help.

    Thanks again
    Darrell

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    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Electrical is not my strong suit, but perhaps a bump will get you an answer. Welcome again to TFP!
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Thanks Patrick, Yes electric not my strongest suit either.. Reason why I'm baffled. Also being electrical parts start to get expensive. So I don't wanna waste $$ where it's not needed.

    Thanks again

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    gtemkin's Avatar
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    First of all, are you certain the bulbs you got are 12V, not 110V items?

    If they are the correct bulbs, you could have a bad 12V power supply that opens up (turns off) with any significant electrical load like a bulb, but still shows 12V when using a meter, which measures voltage without loading down the circuit.

    If you want to verify, and eliminate the socket from the equation, you'd have disconnect the wires from the power supply and temporarily hook up some short wires and touch them to the bulb contacts. If the bulb doesn't light, it's likely the power supply is not working or you've got an incredibly streak of bad luck with new bulbs. If the lamp does work, then it's likely an odd socket issue. I remember someone on this forum saying some of the sockets include a thermal protection device. It would be odd, but if tests indicate it's the socket, it might be due to that protection device, although I can't image how since most thermal protection devices are simply fusible links.
    21K gal 16' x 40' in-ground pool built 1959, old school with Jacuzzi bronze pump, American Products 24" Sand Filter & Americana Multiport valve, Jandy Lite2 millivolt heater, Coverstar cover, and classic Kreepy Krauly.

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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    gtemkin, Thanks for the reply. Yes the bulbs are correct as they read 100W 12 volts flood (from local pool store). I just checked both bulbs by connecting wire/clips to the car battery and the bulbs..both work (light up). Sooooo... I guess it could be the housing socket. It's not taking a load. Also I stated earlier that there's a semi-hard material that's brownish in color on the inside of the fixture around the socket. I was told this should be transparent in color.

    Thanks

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    gtemkin's Avatar
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Clever to use the car battery. Now that you determined the bulbs are correct and functioning, you haven't yet determined if it's the socket or the transformer. Suggest you do the same test on the bulbs by direct connecting them to the transformer. Not saying it couldn't be the socket but it wouldn't be fun to replace the socket, only to find the transformer bad (sensitive to load). Clear epoxy's do commonly yellow with age, which may or may not indicate any issue there.
    21K gal 16' x 40' in-ground pool built 1959, old school with Jacuzzi bronze pump, American Products 24" Sand Filter & Americana Multiport valve, Jandy Lite2 millivolt heater, Coverstar cover, and classic Kreepy Krauly.

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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    You need to put the bulb in the socket, turn on the light and check the voltage at the transformer itself. I really feel as though the transformer is bad. Your meter doesn't draw any current to operate, that is why you are reading a voltage without the bulb being in place. What is happening is the voltage is collapsing once you put the bulb in. The brown substance you are referring to in a contact aid and it will turn colors with age but it should not keep you from making contact. If you will notice you will find the same type substance when you change a bulb on your automobile as well.

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    dumbcluck's Avatar
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    I agree with mr. Electric.
    I may be a Dumbcluck but with s name like mr electric he must be right.

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    gtemkin's Avatar
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mrelectric View Post
    .....The brown substance you are referring to in a contact aid and it will turn colors with age but it should not keep you from making contact. If you will notice you will find the same type substance when you change a bulb on your automobile as well.
    I'm not sure, but I believe you're thinking the brown substance is some kind of grease (either silicone dielectric or zinc loaded conductive), but I think the poster was asking about the clear potting compound (epoxy or polyurethane) that embeds the socket in the housing (installed by the manufacturer). He was seeing a darkening of that material and was concerned it indicated a degradation which caused his lamp to fail.

    By the way, leaving everything hooked up and checking transformer voltage when loaded is the simplest way to verify the transformer, as you suggested.
    21K gal 16' x 40' in-ground pool built 1959, old school with Jacuzzi bronze pump, American Products 24" Sand Filter & Americana Multiport valve, Jandy Lite2 millivolt heater, Coverstar cover, and classic Kreepy Krauly.

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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Thanks guys, yes I was referring to the clear potting compound which retains the socket. Just talking to the someone at the pool store in which they suggested it might be bad due to it's color. They stated that it should retain a clear look for the most part. As far as the transformer.. It's also brand new....that was the next thing I did after the bulb change didn't work. I remember checking the volts at the transformer and I was getting 12v reading. Raining here now but as soon as the weather breaks I'm gonna check again, maybe I didn't have the light on (under a load) at the time I checked.

    Thanks again... stay tuned

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    Divin Dave's Avatar
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Thank you Mrelectric for helping out!
    Very much appreciated!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mrelectric View Post
    You need to put the bulb in the socket, turn on the light and check the voltage at the transformer itself. I really feel as though the transformer is bad. Your meter doesn't draw any current to operate, that is why you are reading a voltage without the bulb being in place. What is happening is the voltage is collapsing once you put the bulb in. The brown substance you are referring to in a contact aid and it will turn colors with age but it should not keep you from making contact. If you will notice you will find the same type substance when you change a bulb on your automobile as well.
    Divin Dave,
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    Ok, here's where I am and what I've got. I've double checked my wiring with the transformer. Wired up properly from the incoming wires from the home panel. Testing at the transformer: when the light switch is off, I get a "0" volt reading on my ACv meter. Turned on I get a reading of "13" volts. So the transformer is working properly under a load. I also went ahead and checked the wiring at a junction box, near the pool light. Where the pool light fixture cord makes it's connection to the wires from the transformer. I'm also getting the same readings on and off load. Now I'm believing it's in the fixture.. agree ?

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    gtemkin's Avatar
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    Re: 100W Pool light stopped working and wondering if fixture is bad ?

    As long as there was a bulb in the fixture, I'd agree.
    21K gal 16' x 40' in-ground pool built 1959, old school with Jacuzzi bronze pump, American Products 24" Sand Filter & Americana Multiport valve, Jandy Lite2 millivolt heater, Coverstar cover, and classic Kreepy Krauly.

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