These components could include an improper lamp, ballast, capacitor or starter (if applicable). All components must be compatible. Check the lamp description and the labels on the ballast, capacitor and starter.
Remember that although mercury lamps operate at the same wattage as metal halide, a mercury-rated ballast will not start and operate a metal halide lamp due to the differences in required starting voltage.
In addition, operation of metal halide or mercury lamps on high pressure sodium ballasts will result in over-wattage operation, causing early lamp failure.
Ballast and/or Starter Location
The ballast and/or starter may be located too far from the lamp. Too great a distance can result in an excessive voltage drop in the wiring or excessive capacitance between the leads, which will reduce the amplitude of the starting pulse below that required to ionize the gas. Check the labels on the ballast and the starter to determine the maximum permissible distance. Remember that wire size and type of conduit and wire used will affect the starting distance. See Universal Lighting Technologies’ catalog for additional information.
Auto Shut-Off Starters
In the event of lamp failure, a standard starter will continue trying to start the lamp. This may reduce the life of the starter and the ballast. To prevent a starter-induced ballast failure, Universal Lighting Technologies offers a line of automatic shut-off starters. When the lamp becomes inoperative, the Auto Shut-Off will pulse for approximately 10-12 minutes and then deactivate if a lamp arc current cannot be initiated. To reset the starter, simply interrupt the power to the ballast momentarily. For this reason, Auto Shut-Off starters are not recommended for use on unswitched circuits.
The voltage required to start HID lamps increases as the temperature decreases. Ballasts are rated for starting down to a specified temperature. Check the ballast label.