Repair or replace old swimming pool lights

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tstephens3956
Pool Newbie
Pool Newbie
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu 13 Jun, 2013 11:16
My Pool: 18,000 gallon indoor gunite lap pool, sand filter, Whisperflow pump.
Location: Indianapolis

Repair or replace old swimming pool lights

Postby tstephens3956 » Tue 18 Jun, 2013 16:27

I have a gunite indoor pool which was built 1997. I have two old underwater halogen lights which keep leaking and attempting to replace the o-ring while replacing the halogen lamp bulb is no longer working. I had a pool contractor come out and look at replacing these but the general approach is to pull out the power supply cord and the fish through a new unit. The problem is that the way these were installed resulted in a very long power supply cord (~30 ft) so this contractor was not sure the approach would work. Does anyone have a suggestion of how to either repair or replace these under these conditions. :crazy:


TSH Tech

Repair or replace old swimming pool lights

Postby TSH Tech » Wed 19 Jun, 2013 01:52

It's the same if it was a short cord pull. I've had some difficult long runs on pool light repairs, longer than 30 feet, but not longer than 100 feet as that is the maximum cord length they are sold.

What makes the long cord pool lights difficult is the blasted bonding wire that gets in the way of the fish tape and of some gawd-awful reason, a previous owner tried to fix a conduit leak by stuffing epoxy or silicone in the conduit. Here's a few tips;

- On long runs, sometimes it's best to pull out the pool light cord and the bonding wire all together. Then, with the help of an assistant, feed the new cord and the bonding wire all tied together into the pool light conduit.

- A few bottles of conduit lube stuffed down into the gang-box help wire pulls go a little easier.

- Sometimes the cord will 'hang up' trying to pull the old cord out, don't use excessive brute force or the cord will snap making the lighting repair an instant nightmare. Pull it in short jerking motions, pour lots of conduit lube down the pipe. You may want to use a shop vac blower to help push the lube down the pipe. When air bubbles come out of the light fixture from the shop vac, then you know the lube is making its way down the pipe coating everything along the way.
(One pool light job was so bad, it took us 3 days to finally get the cord out because the cord had seized to parts of the pipe over the years.)

Difficult pulls like the above require cool heads and patience. Eventually, a stubborn cord will come loose and out. Bursts of anger and attempts to use brute force may snap the cord making things worse.

Upgrade Recommendation
The new L.E.D. pool lights last longer and save you money by not spinning the power meter too fast. New changes in building code for pools have enabled 12-Volt powered L.E.D. lights to be run down into the water without bonding wire, as 12-Volt power is not harmful. The 120-to-12Volt DC converter is installed at the pool pad and the power is run to the gang-box down to the light, effectively making cord pulls much easier minus the thick bonding wire. Something to think about.
tstephens3956
Pool Newbie
Pool Newbie
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu 13 Jun, 2013 11:16
My Pool: 18,000 gallon indoor gunite lap pool, sand filter, Whisperflow pump.
Location: Indianapolis

Repair or replace old swimming pool lights

Postby tstephens3956 » Wed 19 Jun, 2013 13:14

Great advice. It is nice as a consumer to know a little bit about this from an experienced practitioner. My plan is exactly to replace the old halogen lights with LEDs for exactly the reason you point out.

Thanks,
:thumbup:

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