Help! What is this please??

Discussion in 'Electricians' Talk' started by Joanna24, Jul 13, 2019.

  1. Joanna24

    Joanna24 New Member

    E4DEEC3E-CB1F-47E6-8347-2B6A64C6B4B5.jpeg 6C4747F6-D61C-4667-971A-5C60F500D8CF.jpeg 39B34C06-50C6-4EA6-9608-74CEDE9B3487.jpeg 6C4747F6-D61C-4667-971A-5C60F500D8CF.jpeg E4DEEC3E-CB1F-47E6-8347-2B6A64C6B4B5.jpeg 8BE34B7F-0B9F-48BF-9D66-7972EBD91158.jpeg C167EF9E-D977-4699-9B65-BE12ABB7DC4A.jpeg 0A5B24DA-65FD-463D-AAC8-A51E74F12808.jpeg 39B34C06-50C6-4EA6-9608-74CEDE9B3487.jpeg F2EFB7FD-CEBA-4910-A6E8-2D7DD62471F9.jpeg 6C4747F6-D61C-4667-971A-5C60F500D8CF.jpeg E4DEEC3E-CB1F-47E6-8347-2B6A64C6B4B5.jpeg 8BE34B7F-0B9F-48BF-9D66-7972EBD91158.jpeg E4DEEC3E-CB1F-47E6-8347-2B6A64C6B4B5.jpeg Help! I’ve just uncovered this very dangerous box which all the plastic has cracked off and broken (it was covered in electrical tape to hold it together). Can anyone tell me what it is (apart from very dangerous)?

    Our three ceiling lights in the attic have stopped working which I’m pretty sure is because this needs replacing. Also the ceiling lights have those old pins so don’t fit modern ones.

    Is it a transformer box? What voltage do I need? Thanks so much!!
  2. Comlec

    Comlec Well-Known Member

    The damaged part is a transformer
    Input Voltage 240v
    output Voltage 12v
    Maximum output current 5A

    This will support lamps to a maximum combined wattage of 60w.

    If your three lamps exceed this then it is not surprising that it has burned out.
  3. peter palmer

    peter palmer Well-Known Member

    Although it looks like its badly fitted anyway, it will be one of those set of 3 12V downlights you used to be able to buy that all plugged together, they come with 3 x 20W halogen lamps but when one blows everyone just goes down to poundland and buys a new bulb that looks the same but is actually a 50W one, result is transformer stops working, hopefuly.

    The units I described though usually had an electronic transfomer, that is a wire wound one, although it does say eterna lighting on it so is obviously legit.

    Best bet is to swap the lights for 230V GU10 LED fittings and lamps.
  4. Joanna24

    Joanna24 New Member

    57E7C618-8D76-4608-AEDD-88E39625F827.jpeg 19D0B0C9-37F7-4E04-B233-CA8B4BDEAEE6.jpeg Hi, thanks so much for your reply. So I switched the transformer out for this one but it’s still not working.

    I’d like to replace the ceiling lights too but since they are pins I can’t, see this pic:
    5C456F1F-6F2D-4E24-8420-FDB108F071FC.jpeg AF431827-46B7-4610-9CC1-4CDF22E4D962.jpeg

    So I bought these but am unsure how to install as I can’t get into the ceiling, can I install these through the ceiling light hole?

    DA2B8BD3-2973-4684-88A4-FF89E5A45AC4.jpeg D470ABD2-3AEE-41AC-BD9C-F6C591946F44.jpeg

    Any help appreciated!

  5. Joanna24

    Joanna24 New Member

    One set of cables was much thicker and had an earth cable, which I presumed was the 240 voltage main cable, then the other side coming out was only live and neutral, this was much thinner and many tiny copper wires together which kept snapping off. It was hard to tell from the old transformer which way round it should be.

    On a completely separate note, I had two wall lights in the lounge which we were trying to get rid of and an electrician friend cut behind the light switch and taped over. However on the left side there is just one cable and on the right side there are two so he wasn’t sure if the right side was dead. I checked with a screwdriver circuit tester (with a little light in it) and they all seemed to be dead so I buried them in the wall taped up but now none of the main light or bedroom or hallway lights work. I’m not sure if this is due to the transformer in the attic (feels unlikely) or the taping up the wall lights? They have been taped up for the last year though and everything was working fine so maybe it is the transformer in the attic? Any ideas?
  6. terrymac

    terrymac Well-Known Member

    The new light fittings are not suitable for connection to a transformer ,they are mains voltage . If you really want to have them fitted ,some re wiring would be required. By the way ,your bulbs with two thin pins are widely available to fit your existing fittings.
    The electronic transformer you have purchased will only run a total of 60 watts and the combined wattage of your three bulbs must not exceed this.
    With so many rooms that have lights that are not working ,have you checked your fuse board / consumer unit for blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker ?
    The transformer is clearly marked which side the supply voltage should be connected to ,and likewise the output. With all due respect ,I would suggest you engage an electrician .
  7. Joanna24

    Joanna24 New Member

    Okay thanks, yes calling an electrician out tomorrow but just wanted to see if I can fix anything before then. The switches seem to be covered on the main fuse board but I will see if they lift up.

    Yes I was doing some reading so it looks like I don’t need a transformer with the new gu10 light fittings. Do I definitely need some new wiring or could I try just putting the existing cabling through a junction box?

    Thanks again!
  8. Joanna24

    Joanna24 New Member

    Fusebord image here, nothing I can switch apart from the main one?
  9. terrymac

    terrymac Well-Known Member

    Switch off the main switch ,then you can pull out fuse carrier ( one of the 3 with white dots will protect the lighting circuit in question ). Pull out one at a time ,and see if the fuse wire is intact ,I suspect one will have blown. Make sure the power is switched off. As a fuse blows because of a fault ,you should not replace the fuse wire until the fault is removed from the circuit.
  10. Joanna24

    Joanna24 New Member

    Thank you Terry, I would never have known to open the circuit board and replace the fuse wire! Everything is now fixed including the attic lights, which I replaced with the gu10 fittings. Since the previous owner did all the electrics himself, I’m fairly sure he used 240 volt cabling going to them despite the 12volt transformer which is why they work. It’s the standard black and red cabling though there is no earth.
  11. peter palmer

    peter palmer Well-Known Member

    Usually when its 3 downlights with one transformer you get a complete kit including the cable. Usually is a length of twin cable with 3 plugs at various points on it, the lamp holders also have plugs which plug straight into the cable. Like this.


    Is that what you have?

    If so then the cable may only be for 12 volts and not type tested for 230V although it depends on what sort of flex they have used and they have probably just used a piece of general 1mm twin flex, although because its used on the 12V stuff it must be able to carry at least 5 amps which is way more than 3 LED lamps will use, so its just the question of an earth to the fittings, if the lampholder you have purchased has an earth terminal then it should be earthed, if not then I'm sure it will be fine.
  12. Joanna24

    Joanna24 New Member

    Hmm no that photo looks more like what I took away with the pin socket. It’s more a circuit so there are two black and red cables going into each gu10 light fitting, apart from the last one which is only one red and black. There does seem to be space for an earth empire but no earth wire in the cable, could this be a problem?

Share This Page