Checking the electronic ballast

Hello everyone!
This is no longer relevant, but it is possible for someone to use a simple method of checking the performance of electronic ballasts without connecting fluorescent lamps to it. Especially if you have several hundred luminaires for maintenance, it is not always convenient to keep fittings on the desktop (as the body of a fluorescent lamp is sometimes called) to check the electronic ballasts. It can be checked for operability (for example, after repairs or just checked for operability), using a small transformer and a 12V 10W incandescent lamp.
Do not forget that this work on checking the functionality is performed when the electronic ballast is connected to a 220 V network and all elements are at the potential of the network, since they do not have a galvanic isolation! Observe safety precautions and use a 220V 95 W incandescent lamp included in the power cord break as a fuse! It will not save you from being electrocuted, but it will prevent a colorful fire show! Most likely with burnt-out plugs or knocked-out machine guns, under joyful exclamations (or rather obscene language addressed to you ….) indignation from the family … , in order to better understand what to solder and what to connect to check the electronic ballast itself …
Perhaps your electronic ballast is the most common and the circuit will be something like this
 Checking electronic ballasts The task to check the electronic ballast means:
1- Do not connect anything anywhere!
2- Make a visual inspection for burnt, torn off tracks from the legs of the elements and the presence of all parts in their places.
3- Check the fuse and PTC thermistor (if any!) With a multimeter. Further – all the semiconductor parts: diodes, transistors and the only difficulty arises when checking the DB3 dinistor, it does not ring out with a multimeter from the word at all! But as a rule, it rarely burns out! Then you check the resistors, very often in my practice there was a break in the R1 470 kOhm – 1 MoM resistor in the start circuit on the DB3 dinistor.
4- Check the electrolytic capacitor (s) C2 for a loss of capacity, this is usually expressed by their swelling, but some dastardly condensers dry out and at the same time do not visually give themselves away .. Then check the film high-voltage C9, C11 (usually from 630V up to 1200V) in the lamp starting circuit. They are often short-circuited.
The rest of the capacitors, as a rule, remain alive, but it is also advisable to check them for at least a short circuit.
5- If the choke winding is clearly burnt out, then as a rule there is an interturn circuit in it and this choke must be replaced or rewound – for fans of sadomasochism … ..
After checking the parts and replacing the burnt ones, you need to make a transformer. The easiest way to do this is from a choke from such electronic ballasts. It is necessary to find a choke with the maximum free space between the winding and the core. Disassemble it (you can heat it up to 150 degrees with a hairdryer and carefully, with gloves, disassemble it.) And insulate the I winding, for example, with thermal tape. Then you wind the II winding of 10-20 turns of enameled wire with a diameter of about 0.5 mm and insulate it again. Putting it back together, the core can be glued. I just wrapped the halves of the ferrite with black cloth tape so that they would not crumble, it is enough for testing.
Then you solder the I winding according to the diagram, shown in red!
Checking electronic ballasts Solder a 12V 10W incandescent lamp to the secondary winding.
Look for the absence of solder snot on the board and errors in installation. Remembering the safety measures, you supply 220 V power to the electronic ballast through the switched on 220V 95 W lamp into a break in the network wire. Highlighted in red.
Checking electronic ballasts
If everything is working properly, then the 220V lamp does not light at all, and the 12V lamp shines about 2/3 of maximum brightness. This is matched by the number of turns of the secondary winding.
So in this case the autogenerator is working, it remains to check the choke (I) for interturn closure … To do this, you need a choke, and if there are two, then each choke in turn (first connect one, check – disconnect! Then connect the second, check – disconnect! ). Connect the tested ECG choke parallel to the I winding of the transformer, shown in blue.
Checking the electronic ballast If the choke is working properly, then the 12V lamp should light up one and a half times brighter, and the 220V lamp should not burn. If there is a turn-to-turn circuit in the choke, the 12V lamp will go out and the 220V lamp will light up either at 2/3 incandescence, or at full incandescence. In this case, the choke is interturned and must be replaced.
After you have made sure that the electronic ballast is working, you can put it in the lamp. As practice has shown, in 99 cases out of 100, electronic ballasts checked in this way are guaranteed to be working.
Some difficulties arise when checking electronic ballasts of the FINTAR brand.
Checking electronic ballasts They are sharpened to work simultaneously with two lamps and a homemade transformer cannot provide the necessary load to confidently start the generator. It is necessary to solder a 470 kOhm resistor in the D14 trigger circuit in parallel to the D13 diode. Highlighted in red on the diagram
 Checking the electronic ballast This will ensure the start of the autogenerator, but perhaps the 12V lamp will flicker a little. This is quite enough to check the operability.
And we check the throttle according to the same principle as described above. Highlighted in blue on the diagram.
 Checking the electronic ballast I am not claiming that this method is the only correct and correct one. It's just a possible option for checking the electronic ballast after repair right on the table without installing it in the lamp. It's more convenient for me and I decided to share it with everyone.


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