Instructables

Does anybody know how to fix an economic light bulb from blinking?

I've started changing the light bulbs at home. I want to use economic ones like the one in the picture. The only problem that I have is that when I turn off the light , the bulb starts blinking. I have a power switch similar to the one in the picture. It has a little lamp behind the red dots that goes on when you turn out the light. It helps you find the switch in the dark.
I heard from someone that the blinking is related to this lamp.

Does anybody know how to fix this? without removing the little lamp in the switch

Picture of Does anybody know how to fix an economic light bulb from blinking?
light switch.jpg
lucat1 year ago
I had the same problem, just remove the little light in the switch

thats it
iceng2 years ago
The lamp is a semi-smart DC power supply that is made to work on
different supply voltages.
The dimmer needs to pass a minute current through the a normal bulb to
light the switch to let you find it in the dark.

Combine these two and the little current the switch feeds through the lamp
allows the circuit of the lamp to build up charge enough to believe it can do
its job of lighting, however as soon as it starts to light it depletes the meager
stored charge and the light goes out until it can charge up for another blink.

Very simple very straightforward.

A
ZoDo (author)  iceng2 years ago
Thank you...From what you said I think I understand the problem....but how can I fix this?
iceng ZoDo2 years ago
 You have four ways to fix this, I am assuming you want  the night find feature
  1. Hack the switch, and feed it it's own power.  That's an EE job.
  2. Put an incandescent lamp in parallel with the fluorescent lamp.
  3. Try a newer type of fluorescent lamp.
  4. I bought a three way switch and outlet combination, placed a EL night light into the outlet and wired it so the nitelite was on when the switch was off.  Of course there was no dimming but I find the hall switch Real Easy !
Hope this helps,
P.S. I like your Avatar. . . . .  A
sw+outlet.jpgNitelite.jpg
ZoDo (author)  iceng2 years ago
1. If I hack the switch and suply separate power to the lamp and the switch then I gues the lamp will stay on all the time ( I don't want this) + it's a lot of work to get new wires to the lamp
2. Untill now I've only changed one bulb. This one is for illuminating outside, in our yard. I don't have where to put another bulb (incandescent). If I change the bulbs inside I could mix them because inside I use two bulbs. But then I'll have to match the so that the fluorescent one will emit a warm light like the incandescent one.
3. You could be right, the problem could be the fluorescent bulb...but compared to the incandescent one it costs like 8-10 times more and I can't aford to experiment. Plus the problem started when I've changed the switch. The old one didn't had the little lamp.
4. I don't have space for outlet combination. I just finished renovating some rooms and changed the switches. I've put new matchng ones that were a bit more expensive and I don't want to change then. What you say works but I want to keep it simple.

I'm guessing that the people who made them must have had in mind that some peoples will use them with this kind of switches so there must be a simple solution. I was thinking something like adding a ressistor or reversing some cables...
iceng ZoDo2 years ago
Last idea, try an LED based light bulb.

A
I think for this particular kind of illuminated switch, there is a small current which flows, even while the switch is in the "off" state. Other people have written about this problem, um here:
http://www.google.com/?q=compact+fluorescent+illuminated+switch+problems
I don't yet know if there is a solution, but at least now I know what you're talking about.
lemonie2 years ago

Ask this "someone" who told you that the blinking is related to this lamp.

L