A checklist by Finland’s Illuminating Engineering Society (IES)

The Illuminating Engineering Society of Finland’s collaboration group of product suppliers has prepared a checklist of measures to be taken if luminaires fail to switch on or to function appropriately in a system equipped with a ballast. The checklist is as follows:

      1. Check the power supply to the luminaire. Check the voltage by measuring it. In a luminaire equipped with a dimmable electronic ballast, check the voltage in the control circuit if possible (analogue 1–10 V DC). Remove the control circuit, and check whether the lamp comes on at full brightness (100%).
      2. For safety reasons, disconnect the power supply for the following inspections. In a luminaire equipped with a dimmable electronic ballast, also the control circuit must be disconnected.
      3. Check that the lamp efficacy and type match those specified on the rating plate. At the same time, check that the efficacy of the luminaire’s ballast corresponds to the value stated on the rating plate.
      4. Check that the lamps are properly screwed or pushed into their sockets.  At the same time, check the lamp sockets to ensure that there is proper contact between the socket and the lamp (the sockets must be properly fixed to the luminaire). Remove any dust, dirt, and grease when necessary. Note that with luminaires there are some restrictions as to the angle at which certain lamp types may be mounted.
      5. Replace any lamps that fail to light up with new ones that have been verified to work (even a new lamp may be faulty), and switch on the power. In luminaires with two lamps, both lamps must be changed.
      6. If the lamps still fail to work, turn off the power and check that there are no loose cable connections. Also, ensure that there is no insulating layer between the connections’ contact surfaces. Loose connections are usually evident because of blackening or soot.
      7. Check that all the connections correspond to the instructions printed on the cover of the control gear. Note that the connections for safety light systems differ from those for other lighting types.
      8. Disconnect power to the control gear for about 20 seconds before switching it on again Electronic ballasts have been designed to disconnect when they sense a defective lamp or a break in the lamp circuit (see item 5). For ballasts, the situation appears the same if the lamp has not been turned to the right position in the lamp holder (see item 4) or if there is a bad contact in the lamp circuit (see items 4 and 6). Ballasts from some manufacturers are not able to sense that a lamp has been replaced with a new one until the power supply has been disconnected and reconnected.
      9. If the lamps fail to work properly after all these checks and measures, contact the company that supplied or installed the luminaires. Provide the company with details on the luminaire type designation, the ballast type designation and batch number, and the lamp’s code markings.
      10. If the luminaires’ control system does not function properly, contact the company that supplied or installed the controlled system. Provide the company with information on the control system type and components, the luminaires in the system and the type designations for the faulty luminaires, the ballast type designation and batch number, and the lamp code.