florescent light

I have a kitchen ceiling light with four 48 inch florescent tubes. The light has recently just stopped working. It is about 2 years old, from Lowes. It is one of the newer type fluorescents.
Is there a repairable part in this light, or does the whole fixture need to be replaced?
Thanks.
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Might be the ballast. Might be poor lamp sockets. Both might be found at your box store. Check prices vs. replacing fixture, then decide.
Joe
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Or the switch on the wall. Or the breaker in the basement.
One thing sure, four tubes didn't reach end of life at precisely the same time.
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Assuming the light fixture is somewhere in North America/Mexico etc. AND, unlike some European fixtures, is of the type that does NOT use starters. Agree: Unlikely all four tubes fail at once. As suggested by others; sounds like something affecting the whole unit. Bad switch (Note 1), blown fuse/circuit breaker, broken wire somewhere, etc. If it does become a matter of opening up the fixture it may be found that there are two ballasts; one for each two tubes. That is more likely than one ballast for all four tubes. It is unlikely also that both ballasts would 'blow' at once, although it is possible if there was some sort of electrical surge. Or perhaps a bad neutral connection somewhere? Also if does become a matter of repairing the fixture it may be just as well to replace if cost of labour is high? Retain the fluorescent tubes they may have much life left in them. Note 1. Switches that turn on and off fluorescent lights may in certain instances suffer more wear and tear internally because they are (compared to plain old light bulbs) switching an inductive circuit Note 2. We have repaired numerous fluorescent fixtures, including the newer 'electronic types' but it requires electrical knowledge, proper tools and spare parts. More so than any other fixtures, IMO, fluorescent fixtures need to be worked on by someone who knows what they are doing.
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I replaced the ballast and it works now.
I guess I was under the impression that electronic ballasts seldom failed. Guess I was wrong.
Thanks for assistance.
wrote:

Assuming the light fixture is somewhere in North America/Mexico etc. AND, unlike some European fixtures, is of the type that does NOT use starters. Agree: Unlikely all four tubes fail at once. As suggested by others; sounds like something affecting the whole unit. Bad switch (Note 1), blown fuse/circuit breaker, broken wire somewhere, etc. If it does become a matter of opening up the fixture it may be found that there are two ballasts; one for each two tubes. That is more likely than one ballast for all four tubes. It is unlikely also that both ballasts would 'blow' at once, although it is possible if there was some sort of electrical surge. Or perhaps a bad neutral connection somewhere? Also if does become a matter of repairing the fixture it may be just as well to replace if cost of labour is high? Retain the fluorescent tubes they may have much life left in them. Note 1. Switches that turn on and off fluorescent lights may in certain instances suffer more wear and tear internally because they are (compared to plain old light bulbs) switching an inductive circuit Note 2. We have repaired numerous fluorescent fixtures, including the newer 'electronic types' but it requires electrical knowledge, proper tools and spare parts. More so than any other fixtures, IMO, fluorescent fixtures need to be worked on by someone who knows what they are doing.
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Welcome to the wonderful world of Made-In-China...
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On 1/21/2009 8:06 AM TimR spake thus:

True; but if it has a newer electronic ballast, it may shut down all 4 bulbs if it senses that one of them is going out. Might be worthwhile trying new bulbs first.
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My experience with electronic ballasts for fluorescents is that they don't do that. All bulbs going out at the same time is usually (in this order) a bad connection, ballast failure, lack of grounding, or very unfavorable conditions (sometimes including bulb-ballast mismatch).
2-bulb non-electronic ballasts usually have both bulbs go out (or extremely dim) if one bulb fails. The bulbs are in series with each other, though one is slightly bypassed by a small capacitor to assist starting.
- Don Klipstein ( snipped-for-privacy@misty.com)
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On 1/22/2009 5:25 AM Don Klipstein spake thus:

Are you sure about that? I ask because I recently had a problem installing a new ballast in a fixture; I connected it the way I thought it should work, but it wouldn't light what I knew were good bulbs. (I had connected the two leads to each bulb's end together as the old ballast had been wired.) I called the manufacturer's tech support line, and they advised me that I had to connect it exactly as shown on the diagram, because the ballast incorporated a protection feature (I forget the exact name of it now) that sensed when a bulb was about to fail and then shut down both bulbs, rather than allowing them to flicker.
This was a 2-bulb ballast; not sure if this would apply to a 4-bulb fixture, but it certainly seems possible.
--
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- Former President Gerald Ford to his golf partners, as related by
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Nebenzahl wrote:

Take a good look at the wiring diagram on the ballast - it may be different from what you had before.

OK, maybe true, though my experience is that this was typical of 2-bulb magnetic ballasts, and that the 2-bulb electronic ballasts at my workplace do not shut down when either or both bulbs have at least one foot or both feet in the grave.
There might be some new safety feature, but I think the problem that would solve is from the last bulb burning out. In a "pseudoparallel" multiple bulb electronic ballast, when the last bulb is dying, at least one end of the bulb usually gets awfully hot, sometimes cracks from the heat. Sockets from before electronic ballasts became common may be unable to withstand that heat. Bulbs other than the last one, when in the process of burning out, usually have at least one end getting fairly hot, but the last one while in the process of kicking the bucket is the killer.
- Don Klipstein ( snipped-for-privacy@misty.com)
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Be sure to read David's response.
Some units are somewhat sensitive to temperature and if you have the heat turned down in you home and the light is under an unheated part of your home, then you might try just warming the room up.
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