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Beedub

Original Poster:

1,532 posts

111 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
hi guys im fearing the worst at the moment......

over the last week the lights downstairs in my house seem to have started to flicker, every second they slightly dim.... now i cant for the life of me even begin to start to work out the problem.......
one thing i have noticed is even a lamp plugged into the downstairs wiring will also slightly dim every second, sometimes the dimming/flicker will ne faster than other times...... im getting worried my house is going to set fire, anyone else ever had a similar problem and can direct me on where to start to troubleshoot this?


Simpo Two

59,608 posts

150 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
Ask the neighbours if they have it too. Then you know if it's a supply issue or your problem.

Beedub

Original Poster:

1,532 posts

111 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
definatly, i will talk to my neighbours tomorrow, this only happens in the evening..... im not getting this problem in the day, everythink with a normal bulb in has this flicker or dim every second, energy saving bulbs dont have this issue..... even my outside light has this flicker but its much more noticeable with lower light sources like for example and already dimmed light, you can actually see the flicker clearly......

cptsideways

10,655 posts

137 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
My friend had something like this on his 50th birthday BBQ party, we were in the house & strange things were happening to lights, if you flicked a switch you'd get a bang, we all laughed & joked about it.


If I were you I'd get it checked out ASAP!!!!



This was the mess we had to clean up in the morning after my mates Kam's 50th BBQ party, it was a memorable 50th yikes


Flintstone

8,644 posts

132 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
cptsideways said:
My friend had something like this on his 50th birthday BBQ party, we were in the house & strange things were happening to lights, if you flicked a switch you'd get a bang, we all laughed & joked about it.


If I were you I'd get it checked out ASAP!!!!



This was the mess we had to clean up in the morning after my mates Kam's 50th BBQ party, it was a memorable 50th yikes
Well aren't you just a little ray of sunshine? biggrin

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cptsideways

10,655 posts

137 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
Flintstone said:
cptsideways said:
My friend had something like this on his 50th birthday BBQ party, we were in the house & strange things were happening to lights, if you flicked a switch you'd get a bang, we all laughed & joked about it.


If I were you I'd get it checked out ASAP!!!!



This was the mess we had to clean up in the morning after my mates Kam's 50th BBQ party, it was a memorable 50th yikes
Well aren't you just a little ray of sunshine? biggrin
More a flash & a ablaze at the time! biglaugh

Globs

13,131 posts

116 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
If it's just the downstairs lights, it is probably a loose connection in one of the ceiling roses.

Next time it's light:

1) turn on all the downstairs light switches
2) turn off the power. All the lamps should be off now.
3) turn off all the downstairs light switches
4) get a decent stepladder, an insulated small flat screwdriver and check all the connections in the ceiling roses are tight.

You'd be surprised how loose some wiring is!

REESER

35 posts

59 months

[news] 
Sunday 3rd April 2011 quote quote all
we had a very similar experience as stated by the OP.
lights would dim in evening time didn't think much of it thought it was some sort of power surge had this for about 2 months on and off.
Then around November time loss of power to whole house, turns out it was the mains supply in the ground. Western power had to dig up quarter of front garden as cable ran through their under fence out to main rd they had to remake the joint took around 8 hrs to sort out.

fatboy b

6,394 posts

101 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
Globs said:
You'd be surprised how loose some wiring is!
yes

I bought a new house a few years back. When I shut the front door, the lounge lights flickered. I check the switch screws to find that they were all loose. Been in the property about 2 weeks.

Beedub

Original Poster:

1,532 posts

111 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
cheers guys checked again this morning all the lights are back to normal....

again this evening they will be back to this 1 second flicker..... if the problem was house bound wouldnt i get it all the time? Even lamps plugged in do this 1 second flicker on the evening.

This starts from sun fall in the evenings, by morning all lights are back to normal ;-0

Also it maybe of notice we had an all night power cut about a month ago...... About 6 houses were affected, we live opposite clear countryside.

Piersman2

4,025 posts

84 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
Well, if it's only the downstairs lights, it's not the supply to your house, otherwise all the lights would do it.

When you say flicker, I assume you mean dim slightly then back to full brightness rather than off completely then on again?

If it's dimming then full brightness again it sounds like something in your house is drawing the current and making the lights dim as the voltage drops.

It could be that you don't notice this during the day becuase, well, the lights aren't on! smile

Your best bet here is to logically isolate where the problem is.

One evening, whilst the lights are flickering, get yourself a torch ready.

Turn off all the other fuses in the house except the downstairs lights. Does it still flicker?

If not, then the trouble is likely on one of the other circuits, turn each fuse back on in turn and see which one causes the lights to start flickering.

If the lights still flicker, turn them all off. House now in total darkness. Turn one light one. Does it flicker? Turn another light on, does it flicker.

See if you can isolate one light that seems to be causing it.

The fact that you indicate it's a steady 1 sec thing and not random would indicate to me that it's not a bad connection, because that would come and go, not a steady pulse.

Something causing a steady pulse would much more likely be an appliance, like a TV, Stereo, fridge etc... which has a problem with it mains transformer circuitry.

It's easier to locically isolate something starting with everything off than everytheing on.

Will be interesting to see how you get on.

Piersman2

4,025 posts

84 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
Juts noted your comment about lamps flickering too.

That kinda helps to indicate that it's not your lighting circuit or a bad connection in the wiring as the lamps are plugged in to the mains.

Do the lamps upstairs do it too?

Does your house have a separate fuse for lights upstairs/downstairs, and for sockets upstairs/downstairs?

I more srongly suspect you have an appliance in the house causing the issue. Doing what I said above should indicate whether something plugged into a socket is doing it as the flickering should stop when you turn off all the other fuses. When you turn the fuses back on the next trick will be to go round the offending sockets and unplug everything in turn, noting whether the flickering is stopped ot not.

Laurel Green

17,827 posts

117 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
Fluorescent fittings can sometimes cause this - would be my first check if have such.

Beedub

Original Poster:

1,532 posts

111 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
PIersman, everybody thankyou very much for the advice and yes it seems ur right, the flickering is happening in the daytime i just checked, the flicker is a dimming then back to full brightness, every second this flicker occurs, strangely any fitment with a energy saving bulb isnt effected. I have a proper fuse set for lights, sockets, cooker, tonight i will do a full check and report back!!

Thanks guys

Globs

13,131 posts

116 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
Beedub said:
PIersman, everybody thankyou very much for the advice and yes it seems ur right, the flickering is happening in the daytime i just checked, the flicker is a dimming then back to full brightness, every second this flicker occurs, strangely any fitment with a energy saving bulb isnt effected. I have a proper fuse set for lights, sockets, cooker, tonight i will do a full check and report back!!

Thanks guys
Flicker = random
Pulsing = regular

Which is yours?

Energy (CFL) saving lamps work down to about 90V so you may not notice much difference on them.

Beedub

Original Poster:

1,532 posts

111 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
its very difficult to see whats happening up stairs as i have energy saving bulbs in every room, and no lamps ect ect.

T.Vs and the like arnt effected by the surging, but im seeing where your going their MUST be something causing a drain....

it is definatly happening in the day also its just must harder to see whats happening obvious,

UPDATE : the neighbour is also getting the same issue.

Beedub

Original Poster:

1,532 posts

111 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
its a pulsing.....

netherfield

1,300 posts

69 months

[news] 
Monday 4th April 2011 quote quote all
Beedub said:
its very difficult to see whats happening up stairs as i have energy saving bulbs in every room, and no lamps ect ect.

T.Vs and the like arnt effected by the surging, but im seeing where your going their MUST be something causing a drain....

it is definatly happening in the day also its just must harder to see whats happening obvious,

UPDATE : the neighbour is also getting the same issue.
If it's more noticeable in the evenings,could be when other consumers on your line are coming in from work and using more power.

It's possible you are on a main cable which is more or less at it's limit,or the transformer feeding the cable is.

My mate lives out in the wilds,his supply was fine until someone converted a farmhouse and barn nearby,he can tell when the neighbours switch the oven on.

Piersman2

4,025 posts

84 months

[news] 
Tuesday 5th April 2011 quote quote all
Beedub said:
its very difficult to see whats happening up stairs as i have energy saving bulbs in every room, and no lamps ect ect.

T.Vs and the like arnt effected by the surging, but im seeing where your going their MUST be something causing a drain....

it is definatly happening in the day also its just must harder to see whats happening obvious,

UPDATE : the neighbour is also getting the same issue.
Ok, well you won't see that kind of 'brown out' pulsing in anything but a basic filament bulb. Light savers user flourescence and appliances are all designed to work on a range of voltages which would not be effected by a slight pulsing drop of voltage.

So... next door also has the problem?

So it appears it is the supply to the house(s). As stated above, it's out of your hands, probably a faulty transformer in your supplier's grid.

You need to contact then and report it and ask if they will have a look as it's driving you barmy! smile

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