battery backed up Fluorescent lighting

Our office has some battery backed up Fluorescent lighting that no longer work. Each lighting fixture has three 4' Fluorescent tubes. When the red button is pressed, the center tube will light up, so it seems to indicate that power is present. Is the ballast bad or something? How to convert these battery backed up Fluorescent lighting fixtures to be the normal kinds which is on a switched circuit? We want them to be off when power is cut.
Thanks
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On 10/7/2011 6:59 PM, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Open them up, remove the battery backup module and follow the wiring diagram that will be on the ballast transformer
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If I disconnect power to the fixture, will the battery module wires still have 220V on them? I want to avoid a shock when disconnecting the battery module.
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On 10/7/2011 8:07 PM, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Without make and model, I couldn't tell you what voltage it is or how it's wired to the sockets. If you open up the cover plate there should be a wiring diagram to tell you everything you need to know
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If I disconnect power to the fixture, will the battery module wires still have 220V on them? I want to avoid a shock when disconnecting the battery module.
*Yes there will be power coming out of the battery pack once it has been disconnected. Usually there is a disconnect for the battery by means of a wire connection. You may see two wires joined together with factory terminals. Just separate them and it will kill the battery output. It may be near the test button. As RBM stated, look at the wiring diagram on the battery and the ballast.
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*BTW the battery is there to provide egress lighting when the power goes out. This is usually a code requirement. The center tube lighting at half brightness is normal. It is suppose to provide just enough light to exit the building. The battery back up does not light up all of the tubes.
If you want to be able to shut the fixtures off without the batteries activating, you need to provide a separate, unswitched feed to those batteries from the same circuit.
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

No. The battery is (probably) 12v. It's certainly not 220v.
The wires going to the battery will be no more dangerous than changing the batteries in a flashlight.
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Many of them will have a seperate ballast for the two outside tubes. The center tube will have its own ballast with an internal battery. There is usually a connector between two of that ballast wires that will disconnect the internal battery. I do not recall if it will still let the ballast work as a normal ballast.
If not, you will have to replace that center ballast with a single tube ballast, or maybe a newer electronic type that will operate the 3 bulbs and do away with the other two tube ballast.
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My guess is that the center bulb is the only one that is supposed to light up in case there is a failure. The theory is that a single bulb lighting up will provide sufficient lighting for emergency uses, such as to evacuate people, find ddoorways, etc.. So, there may be nothing wrong with the ballast for the center tube. Most fixtures will have a manufacturer's name on them somewhere, ballasts also always have some ID on them. That is where you should start.
The center tube may be run by both a separate ballast and the battery back-up. You mention 220V, are youo not in the USA?
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On 10/7/2011 6:59 PM, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

No concerns about liability or code compliance if you don't repair the emergency lights? Or have you installed other emergency egress lighting?
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Do you own your office ?
Is there a code requirement for the battery backed up lighting ?
Ask your landlord what the possible alternative options are for the back up lighting, those fixtures cost more than standard ones so they wouldn't be there if they weren't required...
Make sure your rental agreement allows you to reconfigure the lighting and then if you were allowed to do so you would have to hire on a licensed electrician to do that work, office type modifications are not DIY projects...
~~ Evan
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