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Thread: Maestro dimmers strobing (not flickering, full on/off cycle!!)

  1. #1
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    Jan 2015
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    Maestro dimmers strobing (not flickering, full on/off cycle!!)

    I have 14 Lutron Maestro MALV-600 dimmers controlling all my recessed and track fixtures. My track fixtures are Lighting Services Inc. (LSI) CX16 (12V, MR16).

    For the first two months I lived here, all was well. Then we had an electrician come in and install two sconces and move four outlets (working on several different circuits). And all heck broke loose.

    Ever since then every single Lutron dimmer I had has exhibited the following behavior: Lights are on. They starting strobing off (hard drop) and the gently coming back up in typical Maestro fashion. Once back on, they shut off again. And repeat. And repeat. It doesn't always happen. I can't really determine why or when it starts. Once it starts, it will continue until the dimmer is turned off. The other M dimmer on same circuit joins in. Sometimes it will continue afterwards, sometimes not. I have videos of the behavior that I can post to YouTube if that helps.

    The electrician is telling me that it's because the dimmers are magnetic and they all need to be replaced. He cannot explain why all was stable until he started working here.

    Can anybody help before I spend a ton of money on new dimmers????

  2. #2
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    Let me add that the ONE dimmer that has not exhibited this behavior is a regular fixture (ie, not low voltage) in a switchplate with 2 low voltage tracks. The two LV tracks will strobe together but the regular fixture dimmer will not. This would support the electrician's theory, I guess.

  3. #3
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    Electrician says he checked all the neutrals but how can I be sure he's right? How does one check that neutrals are not being shared?

  4. #4
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    Did you ever find a solution? I am in the same boat. I am remodeling my kitchen. Everything worked fine for weeks and now all of the sudden I am getting flickering and strobe effects. Some dimmers run LEDs and some run incandescents? Three of the four switches on two different circuits will flicker together. Two on the same circuit almost always are sycncronized together. Any help would be appreciated.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    What bulbs are you using in the fixtures? Are they LED? That sounds like the dimmer is dealing with an under-wattage situation.
    Business Development Associate for Baker Electric Solar

    mbalay@bakerelectricsolar.com

  6. #6
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    Lutron LED support team was *incredibly* helpful, so I know what it is. But I haven't yet found where it is. Search the Lutron site for "common neutral" and read that publication. I'm no electrician, but basically if you have more than one phase of electricity (I do), and they accidentally tie the neutrals together during the renovation, then there is backfeed. The dimmers read it as overload and shut it off, then it comes back on--hence the strobing. For me it's a nightmare because (1) it's intermittent and (2) they changed things in about five different areas, two of which are now behind custom built-ins :( . You need a REALLY good electrician to find it and it's incredibly tedious. A dumb electrician will simply put in a standard switch, beam at you, and say it's the dimmer. It's not the dimmer or the bulb (I've replaced all, several times). The dimmers merely REVEAL the problem, not cause it. Get a smart electrician---I read Yelp reviews to find someone good at troubleshooting. I hate to tell you that i've spent a LOT of money trying to find this, but I have to, because it would come up on a home inspection if I sold my place. My advice is find a good electrician, make him read the Lutron pub on common neutrals, and work methodically through every circuit worked on during your renovation. And please, if you find it's *anything* else, please reply. Good luck.

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