Vakkotaur (vakkotaur) wrote,

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"No user-serviceable parts inside" Ha!

or: Repair Beats Recycling

There were two "burned out" CFLs on the shelf. I managed to miss the recycling day by exactly a day (I kept asking the folks who should have known and kept getting 'idunno' replies, yeah government-level competence makes itself felt yet again) and did not feel like having them there another six months waiting the next event, not did I feel driving all over the place to dispose of them.

I had sent the LED bulbs back under warranty (and I have yet to see any results of that), but these were CFLs and had outlasted the warranty. Also, I'm not sure I still had the receipt and such showing the purchase. I plan to be much more paranoid about recordkeeping for light bulbs in the future. So if I don't chase all over the place to find someone to the things, I don't send them anywhere, and I don't leave them on the shelf, then what?

Repair. After all, these are not incandescent bulbs with a broken filament. They're fluorescent and it was pretty obvious that the circuitry in the base was what failed. The base had that peculiar 'something electronic got too hot' smell. I bungled the first bulb in trying to get the thing apart and wound up cracking the glass envelope. Nothing spilled, so everything is now in a zipped plastic bag. I'm not sure what I'll do with that one. I'd like to give it to some of the ignoramuses at the city office - they well and truly deserve it.

I did manage to get the second bulb base apart without breaking the glass envelope. After a while I managed to get fair if not decent access to the circuit board. It wasn't obviously charred and a big capacitor wasn't bulging. One 330k Ohm resistor didn't look right. It was darker than it should have been and had a spot that looked rather... boiled. I replaced it. I did a quick test and the bulb lit up after a moment. After reassembling the base, I put the repaired CFL back into service where one of the LED bulbs had been (and I had left the socket empty) in the office.

Now one bulb is back to being useful and the office is a bit brighter again. And I know how to get CFLs apart and have at least a chance of repairing any further burn-outs.

Tags: cfl, lighting, repair
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