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Thread: life of a metal arc lamp

  1. #1
    DIY Member tregg's Avatar
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    Default life of a metal arc lamp

    What is the longest you could expect a mercury or metal halide lamp to last? A person I know showed me a lamp in his lot that he says has been on since he took over the property in 1996. The photo switch is not working so it never shuts off. It looks rather dim but it's on. And he says two other parking lot lights with working photo cells are burned out.
    "PULL LEMULE"

  2. #2
    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    I have one that was installed pior to 1995 that is still going strong.

    I have installed them and they not last a month

  3. #3
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Like many things electrical/electronic, some of them don't last as long if you turn them on and off, but can last a very long time if just left on.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    Average life expectancy may be 20,000 hours. That means some last longer. Continuous on probably adds a lot of hours to the life expectancy.

  5. #5
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    There is a light bulb in a fire station in California which has been burning non-stop since about 1910. It was only turned off once to move it to the new station.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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    Electrical Contractor/Instructor jwelectric's Avatar
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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Just a comment, but have you ever had a lightbulb die except when you first turn it on? I suppose if you had a big surge it might go while on, but almost 100% of the failures occur when the initial surge is applied. this applies more to incandescent bulbs rather than arc types, but they often die then, too.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  8. #8
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    The bulb will probably die before we quit yakking about it!

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