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ANYONE KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT ELECTRICS?
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In our kitchen and dining room we have 18 x GU10 50w 240v lamps and they are constantly blowing. Sometimes bulbs are only lasting a couple of weeks before being replaced again.

Sometimes when a bulb blows it trips the breaker for that circuit (they're the only thing on that circuit) but not properly, the breaker ends up a couple of mill off the on position and needs to be switched off before being switched back on again.

We also have GU10s in our en-suite and I've had to replace 1 bulb in there in 6 years vs 2 or 3 a week downstairs.

We also get through bulbs a lot in the living room, again bulbs can blow after days or a couple of weeks.

Any ideas as to what the problem is likely to be?

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Out of step with the forum.

They got hot and blow, try replacing the next blown bulb with a gu10 led and if that lasts, replace them all.

They doubt use the halogen ones anymore.

Yeah, I considered that but the £150 it would take to replace them all buys a lot of normal GU10s even at the rate we're replacing them. Also, I don't want to be blowing expensive LED bulbs with some underlying electrical issue. IYSWIM.

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Out of step with the forum.

NotoriousREV said...

Yeah, I considered that but the £150 it would take to replace them all buys a lot of normal GU10s even at the rate we're replacing them. Also, I don't want to be blowing expensive LED bulbs with some underlying electrical issue. IYSWIM.

Thats why I said buy one :lol:

Asda were selling them for £3.50 and they are similar money in the electrical wholesalers.

Also the led's are way more efficient and will pay for themselves in energy.

I bet with 18 50w halogen bulb you don't need a microwave in the kitchen :lol:

I bet you use the downstairs lights far more (& for longer periods of time) than you do your on-sweet lights, hence them lasting longer. G10 bulbs are notoriously sh1t for lasting a decent amount of time too.

And the trip thing is a PITA. All new circuit breakers do this, which is a genius idea to switch ALL the lights off when ONE bulb blows. It makes finding & fitting a replacement so much easier at night time.

Do what Carlos says. If the new energy saving or LED bulb blows as fast, call a sparky & get it tested.

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Cheers,

Gwaredd

steelesigns.co.uk

We had GU10s in the kitchen in my old house. Installed when we had it extended, I replaced an inordinate number and decided then they were rubbish; they just get too warm.

Slightly concerning that your RCD only partly trips though. Is the board old?

The lower voltage spotlights which use a transformer seem to be much more reliable. I've only replaced a few in the 7 years I've now been in this house.

Whereas the GU10s in other rooms seem to always be blowing.

Updated November 11, 2012 at 8:57 PM

Whe we first moved into our previous house (newbuild) it blew bulbs for fun. Oddly after 5yrs or so it seemed to calm down and rarely ever blew any. :?

HTH :P

I replaced all our GU10s with halogens. They blow just as frequently, the light is awful, and they cost 4x as much.

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Knackered old hairdresser's sh1tter

Jobbo said...

Slightly concerning that your RCD only partly trips though. Is the board old?

The tripping like that is perfectly normal with some makes of mcb (garo is the first that comes to mind but there are others), it just shows that it has tripped as opposed to being switched off indicating a possible fault that may require attention before restoring power so won't just go back until it has been reset by pulling down first. In your case there's no fault just the arc inside the lamp as it blows that causes the trip.

Is there a dimmer switch controlling the lights ? A dimmer can actually help lamp life significantly especially the rotary type that have to be turned from fully off to turn on every time instead of the push-on type as there is no sudden jolt in voltage compared to the instant on-off-on of an ordinary switch, it's the on-off that wears the lamp more than the hours of use (if they were never switched off they would last years).

Also the low-voltage versions of the lamps tend to last a lot longer and the lamps are usually a lot cheaper to replace when they do go. The initial cost of putting in the transformers and lampholders may be prohibitive though.

Updated November 11, 2012 at 10:28 PM

One of my previous houses had low voltage lights on transformers, and a visiting Sparkie told me the problem was because "they're from Ikea".

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Knackered old hairdresser's sh1tter

Si_ said...

One of my previous houses had low voltage lights on transformers, and a visiting Sparkie told me the problem was because "they're from Ikea".

Funny thing about that is that they probably cost more in ikea than in a proper trade shop despite the lower quality.

Generally though transformers (even cheap ones) rarely give trouble in my experience unless they are installed by someone who doesn't really know what they are doing and leaves them sitting pretty much on top of the red hot lamp where they overheat and burn out pretty quick, they should be about 6-8 inches away ideally.

Updated November 11, 2012 at 11:04 PM

Surely if an RCD trips, it should trip to off, not to an intermediate position? I've never seen an RCD with a mid position.

My GU10 bulbs didn't trip the RCD when they blew; not sure that's a good thing...

Jobbo said...

Surely if an RCD trips, it should trip to off, not to an intermediate position? I've never seen an RCD with a mid position.

My GU10 bulbs didn't trip the RCD when they blew; not sure that's a good thing...

How old is your RCD? AFAIK, It's only the more modern ones which trip out when a bulb blows.

At that house, it was about 5 years old - I have a new one now fitted a few weeks ago and it doesn't trip either. No GU10 bulbs here though.

Updated November 12, 2012 at 9:05 AM

My GU10's don't trip the RCD. My old Ikea spots did sometimes when being switched on, and sometimes when the bulb blew.

I reckon we're averaging 6 months per bulb in the kitchen. I've tried low energy, I've tried LED. I've gone back to Halogen because they're cheaper, and give a better light.

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Knackered old hairdresser's sh1tter

I'm so bored, I've just worked out that I have 49 light bulbs in and around the house.

These are made up of 7 different fixings.

I'm very, very bored.

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Romantic BDSM

Gloucester's answer to Eddie Jordan

Jobbo said...

Surely if an RCD trips, it should trip to off, not to an intermediate position? I've never seen an RCD with a mid position.

My GU10 bulbs didn't trip the RCD when they blew; not sure that's a good thing...

No, and to be slightly pedantic i presume it is an mcb tripping and not an rcd which is only there for earth leakage protection.

Like I said earlier it's not very common there are only a couple of brands that do this and it is an indicator of a fault. If you switched off the breaker by hand as opposed to a fault causing it to trip it will go straight to the bottom position and will also push straight back to the on position. However if something caused it to trip itself (either an overload or a short circuit) it stops halfway down and cannot be reset until it has been pushed down to the off position first. It's to make you acknowledge that there might be a problem that may require investigation before just resetting it, (I've replaced a lot of breakers over the years where people just kept resetting them under short circuit or faulty conditions and wore the breaker out, I've even seen people use Sellotape to hold the switch in thu on position ! ) as one of my instructors used to say "trip switches have made electricians lazy" because with the old style boards where you had to replace fuses, nowadays people just reset the mcb and hope for the best rather than making sure that the fault had been cleared before replacing fuses.

FdEoin said...

No, and to be slightly pedantic i presume it is an mcb tripping and not an rcd which is only there for earth leakage protection.

You're absolutely right, and I appreciate pedantry so I'm glad you corrected me. Not being a sparky myself I'm a bit lazy with the abbreviations :oops:

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