12 volt bulbs blowing.

While waiting for a 3k system to be installed on my roof, I've bought a small kit from www.solartechnology.co.uk consisting of a relativly small 10W panel, 2 12v low energy bulbs - 9W and some cable. I also bought a 12 v caravan battery ( the company who supplied the kit advised a caravan battery to be the best) from halfords size 110ah I think it is. Big thing.I am having problems with the bulbs blowing - and at 13.99 a time they ain't cheap ! The first bulb I set up came on for a few mins, then died. I replaced it with the other, and this has now been working for up to an hour at a time, although there is still after 2 weeks a slight smell of burning, and the bulb gets very hot - much hotter I think than the 240v energy saving bulbs I have around the house.I sent the failed bulb back, and the company changed it no problem.I put this in, and it too came on for a couple of mins, then died. I wondered if there could be too much voltage coming from the battery.I have a multi meter, and put it across my bulb sockets. 12 volts on both of them, so I guess that rules out over powering ( I guess that wouldn't be possible anyway on a car battery - or can it indeed chuck out more than 12 volts ?) I am not sure what else to do. Could it be another faulty bulb, or what else should I try please ? Thanks to all. www.chrisreardon.co.uk Daily Net Radio Show Monday - Thursday 4pm - 5pm UK TIME
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A 12 volt battery needs more than 12 volts to charge it. 13.8 volts is the usual charging voltage for automotive batteries and car lamps are designed to cope with that. ( They are noticably dimmer when the engine isn't running). Domestic bulbs are designed to work at 12 volts and 13.8volt working would shorten their life, but not a dramatically as you describe.
What type of charge controller does the panel have?
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The panel is only 10 watts, so does not have a charge controller. Interestingly, if you put the meter across the battery - you get 12 volts.If you put the meter across the output of the panel, you get about 16 volts - BUT if you put the meter across the battery while the panel is connected to it - you get 12 volts. the battery must somehow even things out.

www.chrisreardon.co.uk Daily Net Radio Show Monday - Thursday 4pm - 5pm UK TIME
Weekly Talk Show at : www.unitedkingdomtalk.co.uk at www.offshoremusicradio.com
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It will until it's fully charged. Without a charge controller, it will then attempt to overcharge the battery. Most SLA batteries will start degrading quite quickly when this happens -- electrolyte dry out, and/or battery swell and split. They do have a catalyst to recombine the hydrogen and oxygen, but I don't think they are designed to handle the volumes generated by over charging gassing. There may be SLA batteries specially designed for this purpose.
--
Andrew Gabriel

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Andrew Gabriel wrote:

True, but with a 10w panel and 2 bulbs, or a battery reading 12v it sounds like its not getting as far as fully charged. And it'll only be used short term. Also absence of any controller is ok longer term if charge rate is less than C/?, where I cant remember ?, but 10 or 20 iirc.
NT
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snipped-for-privacy@care2.com wrote:

If the output of the panel is 16volts and the voltage of the battery is 12volts then the 4 volts is been lost in the wiring which is acting as the "charge controller". But I am very surprised to find that a lead acid battery under charge is only showing 12volts.

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writes:

Did the OP meant 16v across the cells when _not_ connected to the battery? If so then the 4v would be lost in the internal resistance of the cells plus that of the cable, not just in the cable. Phil
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Fit Lad Berkshire wrote:

Bad batch of bulbs. Not really anything else it can be, unless youve got them in enclosed fittings. Odd that youre only getting 12v at the bulb sockets, your batteries must be half flat, or the wiring too thin.
NT
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Yes. I too think it's a problem with the bulbs. Why do you think I should be getting more than 12 volts from the sockets ? I am getting the same connecting directly to the battery. It is a 12v battery.
On 23 Sep 2006 13:26:24 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@care2.com wrote:

www.chrisreardon.co.uk Daily Net Radio Show Monday - Thursday 4pm - 5pm UK TIME
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Fit Lad Berkshire wrote:

12v lead acid batteries arent really 12v batteries, 13v batteries would be a closer description. So what the bulbs will do on 13.2v I dont know, but it sounds like theyre a bad lot.
NT
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Fit Lad Berkshire has brought this to us :

Perhaps the lamps are designed for an actual (or exact) 12v, as would be supplied by a transformer - rather than a batteries 12v?
A fully charged 12v battery, not actually being charged at the time of measurement, should show around 12.6v with no load applied. A battery charging towards the end of its recharge cycle should show around 14.4v. A fully charged battery on a maintenance charge should measure around 13.8v. A modern charge controller system should be able to switch itself automaically between the recharge and maintenance charge cycle.
How accurately are you able to measure the voltage - the numbers after the decimal point are important?
--

Regards,
Harry (M1BYT) (L)
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Harry it's just an old multimeter I have. I set it on 25v setting, and the needle goes just under half way across. I have now ordered a couple of caravan lights to see how they go. It says they are tolerant 12 - 16v. www.chrisreardon.co.uk Twice weekly music & talk show Monday & Tuesday 4pm - 5pm UK TIME at : www.offshoremusicradio.com (or catch the podcast of the same shows at : http://chrisreardon1.libsyn.com/ ) Weekly Talk Show at : www.unitedkingdomtalk.co.uk
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Fit Lad Berkshire wrote:

fit a regulator on the output anyhoo, DC-DC convertor should do you know the bulbs are being fed by a regulated supply then, What is the voltage at switch on, does it surge?
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No surge mate. Where would I get such a regulator ? Do you know of a site in the UK I could order one from if the caravan lights don't work ? www.chrisreardon.co.uk Twice weekly music & talk show Monday & Tuesday 4pm - 5pm UK TIME at : www.offshoremusicradio.com (or catch the podcast of the same shows at : http://chrisreardon1.libsyn.com/ ) Weekly Talk Show at : www.unitedkingdomtalk.co.uk
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Fit Lad Berkshire wrote:

Sommat like this would do the job, this will only supply 30watt but if you call the RS helpline (usually very good) they might point you in the direction of a higher power version :-)
http://rswww.com/cgi-bin/bv/rswww/searchBrowseAction.do?D %20dc%20convertor&Ntt%20dc%20convertor&Nr=avl%3auk&Ntk=I18NAll&N=0&Nty=1&name=SiteStandard&forwardingPage=line&RE99021&callingPage=/jsp/search/search.jsp&BV_SessionID=@@@@2021311741.1159175154@@@@&BV_EngineIDciaddiljejmdecefeceefdffhdglf.0&cacheID=ukie
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Fit Lad Berkshire wrote:

Big guns here !!
http://www.powerstream.com/dc-buck-boost.htm
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