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Old 04-09-2012, 12:51 AM   #1
budm
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Default Inverter tester using old CFL

Do not throw away those broken CFL (14Watts or smaller), you can use them for testing your LCD monitor inverter circuits without buying spare lamps for testing.
You can solder the wires directly to the connectors on the inverter board or you can get the correct connectors but then you have to have more than one type.
I tested it out on my lamp tester board as you can see in the pictures.
I open up the lamp assembly using small hack saw just enough for me to crack it open, just be real careful.
Enjoy!
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Last edited by budm; 04-09-2012 at 01:19 AM..
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Old 04-09-2012, 01:05 AM   #2
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Cool, I will provide this link in rev 0.4 of the 2 seconds to black guide sometime in the future.
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Old 04-09-2012, 01:08 AM   #3
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

How do you remember where the REV0.4 is? Is there a place in this forum that how to are kept?
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Old 04-09-2012, 01:42 AM   #4
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Quote:
Originally Posted by budm View Post
How do you remember where the REV0.4 is? Is there a place in this forum that how to are kept?
There is no formal tracking or process controls on this site as far as I know. I just keep my own thread and keep adding to the end of it and keep my own version control.

A bit unsophisticated, but is works okay.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:04 AM   #5
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Looks good definitely a good idea for someone wanting to do a one off monitor repair. If you could even take out the lamps inverter board then solder the lamp directly to the bottom of the bulb fitting and glue the base back on. That way you could mount a bulb holder to you inverter tester board.

Retiredcaps any chance you could link to your 2 seconds to black in you signature then it will be easier to point people in the right direction
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Old 04-09-2012, 09:08 PM   #6
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Nice experiment. I too was thinknig about trying the same thing but that experiment always got delayed or left for other projects.
Definitely good to know, though. I guess this will go on my "to-build" list now. Last month, we had a CFL light die in the house and I took it appart. Bad solder joints on the driving transistors (13003's) killed one of them. The CLF bulb probably still works, though. So looks like I have all of the parts needed .
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Old 04-10-2012, 12:59 PM   #7
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Best regards

A nice experience.
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Old 07-15-2012, 07:17 PM   #8
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Update with T5 4Watts lamp
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Basic LCD TV and Monitor troubleshooting guides.
http://www.badcaps.net/forum/showthr...956#post305956

Voltage Regulator (LDO) testing:
http://www.badcaps.net/forum/showthr...999#post300999

Inverter testing using old CFL:
http://www.badcaps.net/forum/showthr...er+testing+cfl

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TV Factory reset codes listing:
http://www.badcaps.net/forum/showthread.php?t=24809
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Old 02-21-2014, 08:18 AM   #9
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Budm wrote in another thread:
Quote:
Originally Posted by budm View Post
Thanks for the follow up. So what kind of 5W CFL lamp did you use? T5 type?
Yes, I scavenged a 4W T5 bulb from an old Coleman Powermate. I should've gotten 6 more of those along with 7 pairs of alligator clips. The monitor that I was troubleshooting had problems in two inverters at the same time. That's why this single bulb when connected to them one by one would still result in the two seconds to black.

Since we are on this subject.

A while ago I took apart a non-working fluorescent bulb with a spiral tube like in the OP. The bulb was merely a week old and the tube looked brand new w/o any dark spots, so naturally I suspected the electronics. The circuit was comprised of several discreet components and I tested every one that had a p-n junction - they all checked out fine. Next I took apart an identical brand new bulb - fortunately this particular type had the easy to open snap-in cases. I swapped out the tubes with the electronics. After that they both lit up fine.

In this particular bulb (picked up on HD sale: $2.97 per pack of 4, Soft White 2,700K) the spiral tube pins are simply inserted into the two pre-tinned eyelets in the PCB. The pins on this tube were dark of oxidation. My guess is the pins gradually lost contact with the soft tin in the eyelets and the bulb stopped working. I scraped the pins with a knife, reinserted the tube into the circuit and the bulb fired right up. In the hindsight I should've taken apart 3 or 4 dead ones that I had tossed into trash a few weeks ago. I bet they were fine as well.

Yesterday I finally received that $8 CCFL tester from China. Below is a picture of the 4W T5 bulb connected to this tester in front of the newly repaired Dell monitor.
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Old 07-15-2012, 08:57 PM   #10
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

It's the hot Chilli Powder that makes everything work
Cool stuff
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Old 07-17-2012, 04:47 PM   #11
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

OK. I have 13w and 23w CFLs but no 14w.
Does the wattage matter if all I'm using is the top half?
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Old 07-17-2012, 05:01 PM   #12
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

That will be too big (the 23W), 14w or smaller as shown will work. I did not try with other 13/14W with big body (such as used for under counter lights) yet to see if it will light up. Your 13W CFL twisted bulb should work.
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Old 08-21-2012, 12:50 PM   #13
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Would the inverse also work ? Like, using a bulb inverter circuit to test the lcd lamps ?
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Old 08-21-2012, 12:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

The inverter for the HOME CFL is made for driving CFL with starting filaments, it does not use the high voltage (1500~2000V) for starting the Ionnization like CCFL does, CCFL does not have filament.
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Old 08-22-2012, 07:45 AM   #15
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Oh, ok. Thanks.
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Old 12-20-2012, 12:51 AM   #16
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Would this bulb work?
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Old 12-20-2012, 01:04 AM   #17
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Way too big even though it is the same wattage. I tried many shape and size and so far the curly one with 10~14W seems to work well.
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Old 12-20-2012, 01:31 AM   #18
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Wow, thanks for the quick reply. Looks like I will have to sacrifice a new bulb in the name of science. From the pictures I surmise that you don't need hook up to screen to test. Do you have to have a signal coming from the computer? Looks like that was not connected as well. Also, do all of the leads have to be hooked up to bulbs (mine has 4 leads for 4 bulbs?)?
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Old 12-20-2012, 01:57 AM   #19
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

I force the bl_on line on mt tester board, you will have to have your monitor connected to the running PC but you do not need to have the screen T-CON connected.
You have to have 4 working lamps, if one failed or not connected, the inverter will go onto shutdown mode.
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Old 12-20-2012, 02:13 AM   #20
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Default Re: Inverter tester using old CFL

Quote:
Originally Posted by budm View Post
I force the bl_on line on mt tester board, you will have to have your monitor connected to the running PC but you do not need to have the screen T-CON connected.
You have to have 4 working lamps, if one failed or not connected, the inverter will go onto shutdown mode.
I was afraid of that. So I might need to make as many as 4 test bulbs? Or I could try hooking 3 up to LCD with 1 test bulb and hope only 1 CCFL is bad in my monitor and keep trying until lamps stay lit.
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