Christmas lights, specifically flasher bulbs

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Old 11-28-09, 11:42 PM
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Christmas lights, specifically flasher bulbs

Quick question, has anyone ever insulated the flasher bulbs on their light strings?

I live in Minnesota and just put up some new lights and installed the flasher bulbs when I tested them in the garage and they worked perfectly, 'flashing' that is. When I hung them outside some worked (flashed) and other strands just stayed lit. I know the flasher bulb has a filament that heats up and bends thus causing a break in the circuit, then cools and bends back to reconnect the circuit. My issue is they worked in the warm garage and now don't outside, and heck it's not even cold out yet. It was 40 F today!

Any ideas on how I could insulate just the flasher bulbs so they generate enough heat to keep the strands blinking?
 
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Old 11-29-09, 09:47 AM
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Did you have a flasher bulb installed one on each string? I believe newer strings carry the power through so if one string goes out the others will stay lit. Event at 40 degrees it may take some time to start flashing. Try waiting a little longer.
 
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Old 11-29-09, 11:12 AM
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Another option would be a flasher at the receptacle.This is basically a flasher you plug in and plug the lights into it which then flashes everything plugged into it.Of course they would all flash at one time but you could use several to seperate the lights.I've never known them to be effected by temperature but doubt they are weatherproof.
 
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Old 11-29-09, 11:27 AM
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Tolyn I tested them all in the garage with a flasher on the first and last socket in each strand (per the directions) and they all worked.

spdavid, that sounds like a good solution. What is one of those things called? I could put multiples on the splitters I have setup and then just build a weatherproof box for all of it to reside in.
 
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Old 11-29-09, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by chetspartan View Post
Tolyn I tested them all in the garage with a flasher on the first and last socket in each strand (per the directions) and they all worked.
I would suspect then the issue is temperature. 40 degrees may not be too cold to us but to the flasher it might be. Sounds like David's option might your best option.
 
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Old 11-29-09, 12:08 PM
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Terminology varies but basically it's called a flasher.Hardware stores carry them and sales help would know what it was.

Note:They go fast this time of year and depending on the store you may have to try and catch them when they get a delivery etc.Don't wait too long because by around mid Dec the warehouses are out of stock.
 
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Old 11-29-09, 02:22 PM
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100W Winker Lampholder Adapt C471/10 by: Cooper Wiring Devices - F.D.

I use these for my lights you can actually connect lights up to 100 watts to these but you must keep them dry or they fail to flash...water wont harm them but they wont work...

also when used with leds they need to have a few watts of regular lights attached inorder to blink because led lights are dc and dont have enough wattage to cause the blinking....you get a really neat effect....the leds will go full bright and then blink to half bright and back to full



warning...not UL listed
what i did personally was i connected one set of lights to the winker then i connected the coil of a 120volt relay to to a plug and plugged it into the winker also.......then i connected a seperate male cord to one of the the relay contacts and then out the other contact into a plug ... white wires just get wire nutted....then plugged that right into the outlet....a heavy relay is a must or you will just destory the contacts
 

Last edited by braether3; 11-29-09 at 02:49 PM.
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Old 11-29-09, 02:46 PM
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[IMG][/IMG]


the relay i used is a 120v coil solid state relay with 30 amps max load which can be plugged

the winker wont function with just a relay it needs a tungsten load
 
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Old 11-29-09, 07:47 PM
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When I hung them outside some worked (flashed) and other strands just stayed lit.
This to me indicates out of tolerance flasher bulbs. Have you tried flashers from the strings that work in the strings that don't work? If they then flash you know that it is a quality control issue. If possible try a different brand from a different store.
 
 

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