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bgraham34

Led Failures

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I have just about finished testing my strings for the upcoming season. I was amazed that I have had 18 strings that either have completely failed or half the string is out. About 8 of them were from vendors that I purchased here in the last two years. The others were purchased at Walmart or other stores. I only have about 125 - 150 strings in total so the failure rate is pretty high.

Is anyone else experiencing high failure rates?

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10% does seem a bit high.

I'm guessing that there are so many factors relating to string failures. Weather exposure, strain(pulling/hanging/handling), what the string is made of, method of manufacture, and 'luck'.

I guess I'm one of the lucky ones,so far (fingers crossed-spit 3 times)

I've only had one string failure in last 3 years. The string (C6LED-60) was from Big Lot's and bought about 3 yrs ago. I used it to give my 30ft palm trees a candy cane effect so they get a lot of strain from one end and lots of exposure to weather.(coastal southern Calif so not that severe) I did get an 'LED-Keeper" so it should be an easy fix.

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What Color are they? Various or one color? I seem to have the most failure issues with the blue LED's for some odd reason. If they are the sealed lights you should be able to cut and splice halves together to create one working set, just keep track of the polarity of the section if you go this route.

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Sounds like a job for the LED keeper!

Saw this thing in action at C3 in Chicago. Pretty darn awesome. You can get 'em at 1000bulbs.com

Edited by vkjohnson

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For those who have the LED keeper, can you tell me if it will find the LED that still is lit but the whole string is faded? I have a blue LED set of 70 that are not as bright as the other sets I have.

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For those who have the LED keeper, can you tell me if it will find the LED that still is lit but the whole string is faded? I have a blue LED set of 70 that are not as bright as the other sets I have.

I have found a LED that caused this problem once using the LED Keeper 'E' model. Plug the string into AC power along with the LED Keeper 'E' unit.

Now find the approximate center LED's and pierce the wire between 2 of the LED's. Now take the switch on top and move it to either + or - and notice if the left or right side of the string gets slightly brighter, if not try the other position. If a section gets slightly brighter then the bad LED is on the other section, mark this position with a clip. Move to another part of the section that did not get brighter and do it again. Did the LED's on the side with the clip get brighter? If so keep moving down the section until you get the other remaining section to finally get slightly brighter, you will have to move the +/- switch to the other position.

It is the same as finding a open LED, once you can make the other LED's turn on or get slightly brighter and not one, you have found the LED with a high resistance. If this does not work and you can make all the LED's go slightly brighter, then your problem might be an inline resistor or diode in a module.

Now the string I tested did not have and modules, just the LED's in series.

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Keeper, It had to of had modules? maybe not in line ones, but there had to be some in the plugs or something, as an LED can't run on just AC when its a DC powered component. But your explanation with the LED keeper sounds great, I need to get myself one of those :)

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Keeper, It had to of had modules? maybe not in line ones, but there had to be some in the plugs or something, as an LED can't run on just AC when its a DC powered component. But your explanation with the LED keeper sounds great, I need to get myself one of those :)

If enough LED's are in series you do not need either a diode or resistor. My recommendation is you should have at least a diode (!n4004 to !n4007) with a minimum of 400 volt PIV in series with the LED's. Why? the PIV of LED's is around 5 volts each. not much more than the 2.0-3.6v volts forward voltage of LED's. This would help prevent the Damaging the LED's.

What is PIV? It it the "Peak Inverse Voltage". that means if some noise or reverse spike(s) are on the line, it will help suppress these spikes from getting to he LED's.

This could be a lengthy topic but I did not want to go to deeoly into this.

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I just ordered my LED keeper. I can't wait to use it since god knows how many sets I either gave away or turfed.

How many LEDs should be the maximum required before adding a diode? Does that mean that all my sets of 70's should have a diode added inline to prevent breakage? If so, would that prevent them big time form early breakdown?

Also, I just read that it would be offered at Canadian Tire which is too late for me since I got it on ebay from this seller http://www.ebay.ca/itm/LED-Keeper-/181001785071?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2a248c0eef

Now I see that would be the yellow b or e version, I can't recall. Will it be as good as the green version? I understand this one that I ordered has 9v battery to run it. I hope it is just as good. What is the main difference between the two?

Edited by BigDPS

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I have a problem with half the lights out, I have tried the led keeper on some strings (2 or 3) and its lighting them up a bit but only the last, so i replace the 2nd bulb because that seems to be the bad bulb and test again at the 3rd bulb and it doesnt light up the 2nd or 3rd. I think it is those modules (if you call those the green round things built into the line) they are the home depot home accents holidays brand and I am not sure how else to fix them. I have unplugged and even cleaned the contacts inside the socket and another problem I have on GE leds from lowes are the LED works in the LED KEEPER but not in the socket, even with tight connections. Is there a way to fix that without using the "cut the bulb out method" as I dont want to use my 2 splicers already.

most importantly, the LED Keeper is a great tool so A++++++++

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Nearly all my LEDs are bought at local stores, and for the most part I've had very few problems with any of them.

The only true exception is icicle LEDs...one type was particularly bad - 4 out of 5 sets had failures from 1 season's (other type was only one failure). I've since fixed them all, but what a pain finding the 1 or 2 bad LEDs in a set :(

I've never seen a LED Keeper, just the regular incandescent-mini LightKeeper .. guess I'll have to pick one up after xmas

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I just got my LED Keeper today. I guess the splicers have a 323ohm resistor that would replace the LED if one was burnt. I might just solder one if I run out of the 2 splicers.

Edited by BigDPS

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I have had three kinds of LED string failures: 1) Strings purchased from SAMs have dissimilar metals between the LED bulb (steel) and the string socket (copper), after one season of wet weather here in Florida and months in the attic they all failed due to rust; 2) rectifier failures on strings purchased online from a vendor that no longer exists, it could have been rain but I suspect poor design, nearly all Blue and Green strings failed; 3) The best performance I have comes from strings purchased from Creative Displays; I had one rectifier fail, the string was replaced at no charge. I put strings in our trees using a commercial lift that I rent but I pull them down using a pool pole for leverage. About 5% of these strings get pulled apart before they release from the tree. The replacement cost for failed strings is lower than renting the lift a second time.

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