06:33PM | 09/11/05
Member Since: 08/19/02
29 lifetime posts
I have a 150-watt high pressure sodium security light that mysteriously began cycling on and off about a month ago, after about three years of faithful operation.

Thought the photoelectric cell might have gone bad, so I replaced that.

No improvement.

I suppose my next move will be to try a new bulb, but these things are supposed to last much longer than this one's been in service.

Do these things have some kind of ballast or starter that might have gone bad?

Any ideas on what's causing this on/off cycling?


09:14PM | 09/11/05
Member Since: 04/12/05
15 lifetime posts
Yes, these lights have both a ballast and an ignitor (or starter). And this sounds to me like a bad ignitor. If you open up the fixture, the ignitor is probably a black cylinder a little larger than a 35mm film container, with three wire leads (if memory serves correctly, it's been a while).

Good luck!



05:51AM | 09/12/05
Member Since: 05/03/05
79 lifetime posts
One of the tattletale signs of a bad lamp in an HPS fixture is the cycling of the lamp.

Average life of the 150W hps lamp is 24,000 hrs. This is an average! Some last longer, some don't.

If the ignitor goes bad the lamp will not light at all. Same with the ballast. Some of the "cheaper" fixtures have the ignitor as part of the ballast. I have found that sometimes it is more economical to replace the fixture than to do the repairs after replacing a bulb.


06:26AM | 09/12/05
Member Since: 08/19/02
29 lifetime posts
Yeah, I think it's the bulb, whose behavior seems to fit the consensus here and on another board.

The lamp is a Regent from Lowe's. I've had a number of these and they've all performed well.

And actually, the bulb is closer to four years old than three.

Thanks, guys -- appreciate your help.


02:29PM | 02/05/16
1st thing to try from what I read is to change the bulb. It's called end of life cycling and a common occurrence.
If that doesn't fix the problem, hey, you have a spare bulb, money not wasted. Put the old bulb back in and try other more difficult things like transformer or starter or replace the fixture. (wisest choice). Some fixtures might be able to be purchased without the bulb to save some money. I have two of the HPS lights and a spare bulb would be good to have, even for just testing.
This is the common sense approach I am taking.
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