Chandelier pulses before turning on.

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  #1  
Old 09-28-14, 03:43 PM
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Chandelier pulses before turning on.

Hi all, I'm having a strange issue with a chandelier and could really use some help as this is for a nursery for a baby that is literally one week away.

I'm located in the U.S. and I purchased a chandelier that is ordinarily used in Asia. The seller assured me that they would attach the proper transformers to allow for use in the U.S.

Here is what the wiring looked like inside the chandelier:



In case it's hard to read, the transformers have the following printed on them:

ZHT Electronic Transformer
Model: WTL06-120
Input: AC110V-130V 50/60Hz
Output: AC12V 120W (50-120W)

Neither the small white connector in the chandelier nor the wires leading into it indicated a hot or neutral, so I just randomly chose a configuration and plugged it in. (I also tried the reverse and get exactly the same results.) From my ceiling junction box, I have only a single wire for hot and single wire for neutral. (The junction was recently installed by an electrician.)

Here's my problem. The chandelier works great. But, about 40% of the time, when I turn it on, it slowly pulses about 5 times before powering on. 10% of the time, it pulses 1 or 2 times, then turns on. 50% of the time, it just turns right on. (It is connected to a Luttron dimmable switch.) This happens regardless of whether I gradually increase the intensity or just turn it on full blast. It also happens if I had the last setting to a dim setting and attempt to turn it on.

Is this because of crappy transformers? Is this something I can fix? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

 
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Old 09-28-14, 03:59 PM
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Try it with a non dimmer switch. I'm guessing LED bulbs and dimming LED bulbs is more art then science.
 
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Old 09-28-14, 05:39 PM
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They did indeed attach the proper power supplies for use in the States but did you specifically ask for dimmable ballasts as what you received may not be able to be used on a dimmer.

Once you've tried them with a standard switch you'll know for sure.
 
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Old 09-28-14, 06:46 PM
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Argh. I did not ask for dimmable ballasts. It didn't even occur to me that I needed that. I will say that, even without the proper ballasts, the light does indeed dim, quite nicely actually. It is just not reliable. Is it dangerous to dim the light without dimmable ballasts?

More importantly, can I source proper dimmable ballasts here in the US? Can someone point me in the right direction?
 
  #5  
Old 09-28-14, 07:02 PM
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They are actually halogen bulbs. There are twelve G4 bulbs. I'm trying to find a dimmable ballast so I can dim the thing.
 
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Old 09-28-14, 07:07 PM
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Old 09-28-14, 07:37 PM
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Last question: Is it safe to use my setup on a dimmable switch? Is there any potential risk?
 
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Old 09-28-14, 07:40 PM
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Yes... it is safe to use your light on a dimmer. The light may not track the dimmer properly but there shouldn't be any adverse problems.
 
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Old 09-30-14, 11:29 AM
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Thanks to everyone for the help. I tested a regular switch, which solved the problem.

Just to be clear, these are G4 halogen bulbs. The switch is a Lutron that gradually turns on the light to the previously set brightness, and then allows you to dim accordingly. Because I want to utilize dimming, I'm going to try another Lutron switch that is something like a hybrid in that it has a conventional "on/off" switch, but also has a tiny dimmer slider on the right. We'll see if it works!

The left switch is the one I have. The right switch is the one I'll try next.

 
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Old 09-30-14, 11:51 AM
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The problem is you are "dimming" the transformer not the bulbs (directly). You need a dimmer for a lighting low voltage transformer. You might try a ceiling fan speed control if you just want to experiment. (The speed control will start at brightest not dimmest.)
 
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Old 09-30-14, 01:07 PM
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Edit: Never mind. I think I know which one I need.

Does anyone know which of these would be the right fit? I don't understand why some switches are 150W and some are 1000W. Some are designed for CFL-LED, but also accept Halogen according to the description.

Search Results for¬*lutron diva¬*at The Home Depot
 

Last edited by eyc908; 09-30-14 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 09-30-14, 01:53 PM
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Old 09-30-14, 09:41 PM
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The problem here is that the electronic transformers that came with your fixture are not transformers. They are switching power supplies and require a certain voltage to work properly. When you reduce the voltage below that point unwanted things will happen.

Your bulbs are halogen but not the power supplies so a halogen dimmer won't necessarily cure your problem either. You'll need to try different dimmers and stay with the one that works the best.
 
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Old 10-01-14, 09:44 AM
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@PJmax - thanks for the help. I am going to try one of Lutron's 300W Electronic Low Voltage dimmers and will report my findings.
 
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Old 10-03-14, 05:48 PM
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Crap. Crap crap crap. I thought I knew what I was doing, but I have no idea. I thought I had a neutral because I saw three wires going into the switch, but now I'm completely confused. Can someone help me decipher these wires?

Green = ground
Black = hot
Orange = fixture

That much I think I know. Is it possible that one of the remaining lines is the neutral? I guess the only option is the white (with three wires) or the red (with two wires).

 
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Old 10-03-14, 06:20 PM
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The white connection is the neutral.

You've found a dimmer that requires a neutral connection ?
 
  #17  
Old 10-04-14, 07:45 AM
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Yes, I found a dimmer with a neutral line. Someone recommended to me to try this dimmer for electronic low voltage setups:

Lutron DVELV-300P-LA Diva 300-watt Single Pole Electronic Low-Voltage Dimmer


I used the white lines for the neutral line and it seems to be working just fine. My only concern is that when I touched the white lines, it sparked. When I touched them again, they sparked again. Despite that the fuse was shut off for the room I was working in, I realized that the white lines were connected to the fuse for the second bedroom. I shut that fuse off and connected everything.

Maybe I don't know what "neutral" means, but I assumed it wouldn't be hot like that. Hopefully, I didn't wire this thing incorrectly.
 
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Old 10-04-14, 12:47 PM
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It sounds like you were in the middle of a multiwire branch circuit. That's where one neutral is used for two circuits.... and the two circuits are on opposite legs of the 240v service.

You turned the one circuit off but the second one was still live which meant that there was still a load on the neutral until you shut the second circuit off.

If the dimmer is working then it would appear it wasn't damaged.
 
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