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Thread: Test button required?

  1. #1
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    Test button required?

    Installing 6'' cans with emergency ballasts. No apparent test switch. Is one required by nec or life safety? What code is applicable?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by billdozier 78 View Post
    Installing 6'' cans with emergency ballasts. No apparent test switch. Is one required by nec or life safety? What code is applicable?
    You sure they will not have a test switch supplied with the ballast? I have never seen one that didn't come with some kind of test/power indicator light that many times is nothing more then a combo red lighted push button on a wire made to plug into wires out of the ballast?

    I have at times just used a red lighted push button in a wall plate to allow access for testing by a FM at a lower hight where the fixture was over 15' up.

    But most FM's (Fire Marshals) will require a means to test them monthly if they are for egress, they will also have to meet the required foot candles on the floor of the egress route.
    Last edited by hurk27; 07-18-12 at 08:42 PM.
    Wayne A. From: N.W.Indiana
    Be Fair, Be Safe
    Just don't be fairly safe

  3. #3
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    The wires are there. The lead wants to install a 4 sq with push button switch in ceiling adjacent to the light fixtures. I would imagine the test button would be in the can trim. But have not seen trim or cut sheet. Most emergency lights I have worked with have the test switch integrated into the actual fixture. Have you guys ran across this not being the case before?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by billdozier 78 View Post
    The wires are there. The lead wants to install a 4 sq with push button switch in ceiling adjacent to the light fixtures. I would imagine the test button would be in the can trim. But have not seen trim or cut sheet. Most emergency lights I have worked with have the test switch integrated into the actual fixture. Have you guys ran across this not being the case before?
    To the above in red:

    Yes in most cases where instead of a manufacture designing the fixture with the EMG ballast already installed at the factory, you might have a supplier who orders a low cost can and installs the ballast themselves so they can make more money, or if you order the ballast separately from the cans, but even then they should come with the test button/charge light, while most I have done are linear fluorescent fixtures where we add install the button in the end of the fixture, for cans we just put it through the trim or like you said in a cover in the ceiling tile, but in cases where the ceiling is too high then we bring it down to a wall box and put it in a cover but up out of easy reach.
    Wayne A. From: N.W.Indiana
    Be Fair, Be Safe
    Just don't be fairly safe

  5. #5
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    In my experience, I have never come across a can light supplied with an emergency backup ballast include an integrated test switch within the fixture.
    They have always come with an external means for the test button. Usually it is just a cut in type box that you install next to the fixture.
    The Man Prayer: I am a man ... I can change ... If I have to ... I guess.

  6. #6
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    I have never faced such a problem either....pretty strange

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    Last edited by Dennis Alwon; 08-10-12 at 05:43 AM. Reason: delete link

  7. #7
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    Never saw this in a can light. I've seen lots of troffers and a few flourescent strip lights with em ballasts. They all had a test button on the belly pan, accessible through the open lens.

    I do not like these. They are very troublesome. I have replaced a lot of the ballasts & found it's better to replace em and main or the main will go out a few weeks later.

    I like wall pack em lights. They give better light, IMHO and are easier to work with.
    Yes, I'll be happy to do a first class job for less than anyone else and take a dollar a week for 10 years.

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