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Discussion Starter #1
OK I'm back to the electrical section of this board. I keep burning up my relay for my KC slimlights. Thought I just got a bad one the first time then the second went out 2 weeks later. Here is the situation. Power to the relay from the distribution center. Relay is grounded all wires are fine condition. Get power to the switch. I have the white wire hooked right back to the original 12v power for the relay. Works for 2-3 weeks then the light dont work but the switch still has power. What could be wrong. THe only thing I can think of is that I have the white going right back to the original power for the relay. Directions say to hook the white to any 12v power source. So where am I screwed. I want the lights to work when the car is off so I thought that was the esiest way. ANy body please help!!!
 

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Okies I'll try and help. I've got the KC Titanium 135watter slim lights.
My relay is the KC 3300 and wiring is as follows from the relay.

Red- Lights relay# 87
Green- switch relay#86
Yellow (20 amp fuse)- Batt to relay#30
Black-ground relay#85
White- (3 amp fuse) to switch hooked up to batt.

It's how they said to do it in the instructions so I did it that way and they turn on when ign is off.
I haven't had any problems with the relay at all lights didn't work once and it was poor ground.

Hope it helps.




Mo
 

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Discussion Starter #3
So you have the white mounted to the same battery terminal. Do you have it coming directly off the battery or from the power Dist center??
 

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Yeah both are connected to the battery. I went this way because that's what i'm used to running my old lights.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Replaced my third relay this weekend and tore everything out and followed the directions to the word. Used all new grounding points too. Only time will tell, the relays thus far last me 2 weeks or so. I'll report back then.
 

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What I have learned is the lame car parts relays cannot handle more than 75% load for long periods. Get 2 relays and run power from the switch to both relays. Remember the relays are 30amp/300 watt, so that is pretty heavy usage for 2 lights per relay.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Ok so while I was tinkering with them I noticed this: While both of the lights were ungrounded one still worked. So could it be possible that during the manufacturing of the light the ground is somehow attached to the outer shell of the light and grounding itself. but how would that effectively burn out my relays.

Lothos: I agree that the relays are crap but i have not used the lights longer than 5 minutes at a time.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
And whats the opinion on the cheap lights from like Kmart and Meijer that have no relay at all. how long will the switch last with full power to it. I ask because I was thinking of adding the cheapies for lights in the back of the Jeep but I dont want to pay $$$ and have huge lights back there. Opinions always welcome. THe kit I was looking at are pilot lights.
 

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Dig, (hat turned sideways) It's been a while so I may be wrong here but, with a live wire grounding, could pull more amps through the relay causing it to burn out quickly? And I say it could be possible for some contact to a ground from the fact. I always check mine when I install em just to make sure the connectors are covered enough so while wheeling it can't vibrate and hit ground.

As far as the lights w\o relays, when I had them I kept overheating the cheap switches and kept replacing them. So I went back to relay for them.

Sounds like your on the right track to gettin them lights to work for more than 5 mins..


Mo
 

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Discussion Starter #12
And again they died at the 2 week time period. I am about to call KC and have them send me new F'ing lights. THis is ridiculous. The only thin I can think of now is to put rubber washers between all the lights mounts and washers to isolate from a ground. I have had electricians (two now)take a look at them and they cant figure it out either. I have had it!!!!
 

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Any chance your relays are mounted close to a heat source? If so, the varnish on the coil winding could be melting and causing either an open or shorted condition in the coil.

Another possibility is that you have a rather large inductive load on the same branch and when it is turning off, a momentary rather large negative voltage is being felt across the coil which will cause excessive current flow, which will also melt the varnish.

Or as you have stated, if you have cheap relay contacts, they will melt or come apart when heavily loaded and this splatter may fall against the varnish and melt it that way.

Good luck and some coil resistance measurements and pictures of the contacts would help to diagnose.

Ken
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Ken, It is mounted on the firewall just to the right of the battery when looking from the front of the JP.

I could take pics but it is set up like everyone elses, thats what I dont get. I think I will demand a new set from KC. and have it installed so I can keep complaining to the installation people until they fix it. I 'll try the rubbe isolators first though as they are only like 10 cents a pop.
 

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Dig, ya still havin probs with them cottenpickin lights??????????? let me know, I wanna know wtf is going on.. if they still mesin up get them new ones and come here and I'll put em on fer yas :)
I swear GET OUT OF MY HEAD!!! I got ma relay mounted right next to the puter on the firewall about a 6" wire length away from the batt.


Mo
 

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I think that would be a good first place to start - new higher current and temperature rated pair of relays - then a check to make sure all of your connections are solid.

The relay coil shouldn't draw very much current so the coils should really not fail unless they exposed to over temperatures.

The contacts on the other hand will have anywhere about 11-13 amps for a single 150W Lamp all the way to about 22-26 amps for a single 300W lamp - this is for a single relay controlling a single lamp.

If you have one relay controlling both lamps, these values will double and you will be pushing the contact rating and they will start to deteriorate. What happens is the contacts become burnt from high current transcients caused by turning on/off and when this happens, they start to increase in resistance. This will cause the contacts to get hotter each time, less voltage will go to the lamps, and a downward spiral towards failure will occur.

So, to solve this once and for all, buy the best relays you can afford, or find, that are rated about 1.5 times the current you are drawing and have one relay drive each lamp - this should fix your problem if it is a contact issue.

Good luck again.

Ken
 

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Discussion Starter #17
ok talked to KC today and they have no idea why this is happening. they are going to send me a new $3 relay though :) anyway I said that I have just about had it and I am going to rip it all out and send it back to them. They said they would happily take a look at it and diagnose the problem. Anyway- the lights are only 100 watts each and the relay is supposed to 40 amp. So I dont think it is a problem with amperage. He said that the relays fail when they get wet and mine hasnt. He also said to ground everything to the negative side of the battery to avoid any problems with grounds. SO I will try one more time before getting a refund and buying PIAA or something else.
 

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Man Dig, I can only say this... You have more patience than a rooster in a full hen house..


Good luck on them there lights.



Mo
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks but it must only be in the text cause I'm a good bit pissed off at this whole scenario.
 

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I hear you and good luck!! Been doing this for a lot of years and theory always assumes some sort of ideal model, and reality is, manufacturing and real world tolerances are no wheres near what we expect. They probably started buying their parts from a new low bid vendor in China and the quality control there is sub-par. Good luck again!!

:)
 
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