Low Voltage Yard Lights Not Working
Why do my low voltage yard lights turn off 2 or 3 hours after turning on?© By: Dave Rongey
Problem with Malibu Lights
David in Washington asks: Why do my low voltage Malibu lights turn off 2 or 3 hours after turning on?
- Well, I’m stumped! I have a simple, low-voltage exterior lighting arrangement. It ha been running perfectly for perhaps 8 years (or longer).
- There is a 45-watt transformer with an integrated photocell. This maybe a Malibu unit, I can’t recall. This is powering two 20-watt spots. The unit turns on when it gets dark, it lights our house address and one tree until dawn, then it turns off.
- Lately I’ve noticed it kicks on as usual, but then perhaps 2 or 3 hours later, it shuts off. If I go outside to the unit and unplug it, reset the outlet, then plus the transformer back in, it’ll think about it a moment, then both spots will pop back on. but 2 or 3 hours later, I’ll notice they’ve shut back off.
- It seems like if there was a short in the line, the lights would shut off immediately once power hit them, instead of running for a few hours first?
- If the transformer was on the fritz, it seems like the lights wouldn’t kick on at all. Similarly, if the photocell has gone bad then why are the lights popping on at dusk and staying on for awhile before kicking off?
- Help! My gut tells me a new transformer would probably solve the problem, but I hate to buy something if I can fix what I have.
Additional Comments: People like you reaffirm my faith in humanity. Thanks in advance, even if you can’t help me. I really appreciate what you are trying to do.
Thanks for your electrical wiring question David.
Electrical Problem with a Malibu Yard Light
- Application: Electrical Problem Low Voltage Lights.
- Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced – Best performed by a Licensed Electrical Contractor, or Certified Electrician.
Electrical Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools, Voltage Tester, and appropriate Safety Gear.
- Estimated Time: Depends on the personal level experience, ability to work with tools, install electrical circuit wiring, and the available access to the project area.
- Electrical Safety: Identify the electrical power source to the Dusk to Dawn Light, turn it OFF and Tag with a Note before working with the electrical wiring.
- Electrical Wiring Parts and Materials: Electrical parts and materials for the Dusk to Dawn Light should be approved for the specific project and compliant with local and national electrical codes.
- Electrical Codes and Inspections: Installing or changing home electrical wiring should be done according to local and national electrical codes as adopted in Seattle, Washington. A permit and inspections may also be required.
Electrical Problem a Malibu Light in a Front Yard
This electrical wiring project is about Electrical Problem a Dusk to Dawn Light in the Front Yard of a New Home.
Outside Low Voltage Light Problem
- David, From what you have described, there may be a few things to do before buying unnecessary parts.
- Problems like this may be solved by going through a process of elimination to reveal the problem.
- For Example:
Start by using an extension cord to supply power from a different outlet.
- This way you could find out if the problem is with the GFCI Outlet or not. If so, then the GFCI Outlet will need to be replaced.
- Testing each component individually will allow you to get to the cause of the problem.
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