LED pannel stays dimly lit when earth is connected

Thread Starter

PeteB9

Joined Apr 6, 2021
2
Hello all, I installed an LED light yesterday and found that it stays dimly lit when turned off using the supplied IR remote. When turned off at the wall the dim light goes. I had a feeling it might be because I connected the earth to the metal framework by attaching the wire to a nearby screw so I removed this and the dim light goes! Question is - why is this happening? Is there some sort of electrical leak in the earth or does this compete a circuit and the LEDs are sensitive enough to pick up the low current? More to the point, is this normal? Shall I leave the earth connected or should I say - the lights are over 2 meters from the floor and a simple solution is just to keep the earth disconnected?

The attached picture is of the light with the earth disconnected, just to show the wiring.
 

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Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,263
There's a chance the IR Remote is not made for LED circuits. I have LED's on IR motion detection switches mounted on the wall. Walk in and lights go on. Leave room and five minutes later lights go off. The problem experienced here is that there is insufficient load to turn the lights fully off. By adding a single incandescent bulb (INC) into the circuit my lights work fine. Completely off when they're supposed to be. Remove the INC and lights never go completely off.

I made a video about dimming LED's with a common light dimmer switch. It shows how a single INC makes a big difference. As to why grounding or not makes a difference in your setup - I don't know why what you're experiencing is happening. It's possible the LED's are not meant to be grounded. But to be sure - I DON'T KNOW THAT FOR SURE.

Here's that video:
 

AlbertHall

Joined Jun 4, 2014
11,504
The electricity compant came to change the supply cable to the house. When it got dark all the fluorescent lights (LEDs hadn't been invented then) were showing a faint flickering when switched off. When I checked, the live and neutral were swapped which means that the lights still had a live connection even when switched off, hence my suggestion above.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,263
the live and neutral were swapped
Been there myself. Only, it was one of the home owners before me who damaged a line and wired it back together - black to white and white to black. That meant half the outlets in the bedroom were wired backwards. When I set up the small room for an office, plugging the computer into one outlet and the printer into the other - oh, forgot to mention the previous owner changed from 2 plug outlets to three. To make them look good they jumped neutral and ground together. White and Green.

So my computer was backwards and case hot (not case ground). The printer was hooked up normally (as normal can be when someone does something stupid like jumping neutrals and grounds together. When I went to plug the communication cable from the printer into the computer I got a shock and a good bang as case hot met case ground (neutral actually).

There's no accounting for what others have done before you. Maybe I'll post some pictures of the wiring I pulled out of the garage. Flying taps (Western Union's) AND even though there were ground wires present, they were ignored. Can't fix stupid. Can only rip it out and start over and work to code.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,263
In the third picture you can see the ignored ground. I bent it out to illustrate it. You just never know until you tear into it.
IMG_1633.jpegIMG_1635.jpegIMG_1636.jpeg
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,263
I remember seeing an episode of some home renovation thingy where the guy was mixing concrete (no aggregate) with local soil then putting it in a pressure ram to make bricks. The moisture in the ground, not sopping wet, not bone dry, reacted with the concrete to make some really nice bricks.

But I think we're wandering off topic.
 

Thread Starter

PeteB9

Joined Apr 6, 2021
2
Thank you for your responses - I have a feeling AlbertHall might be right - I'll double check this tomorrow. Also you're both absolutely right about not trusting previous wiring. When I first moved in to this property I had a few new sockets installed and the electrician said that for some reason the previous owner joined two rings together on the first floor so if you turned off the breaker for say the upstairs light, they’d still be live because the upstairs sockets weren’t turned off. Weird and dangerous. I believe it was all fixed but just incase I still turned off the main breaker when installing this. Second issue is that the previous owner only used black cable for most of the house so the 50/50 chance I took for the wiring seems to be wrong.

Also Tonyr1084, that sounds and looks terrifying. I would have thought that’d trip an RCD but I know they’re not standard everywhere, especially older buildings.

As for bricks derailing things, honestly that’s pretty interesting haha. I’ve heard of similar things with 3d printed liveable structures – i.e. reconstituting the local ground and letting moisture wick up and harden the building further.
 
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