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LED light causing phone line static

tcleveen's picture

since adding recessed LED lights in a kitchen remodel I get annoying static on all my phone lines- all house jacks affected and even when connecting as a test,  an old push button dial phone, as I was wondering if the answering device base that supports satellite phones elswhere in the house was going bad. But no, simply turn off the LED lights and no static on the line.so  I'm getting interference. How do I go about getting rid of the line noise?

Presumably the LED "ballasts" (post #207418, reply #1 of 20)

Presumably the LED "ballasts" (voltage regulators) are causing the noise.  This should not be -- the devices are supposed to meet fairly stringent noise standards.  If there are multiple regulators, try disconnecting one at a time to see if one particular unit is at fault.

Also, look for any jury-rigged phone wiring in the house.  Phone wire is supposed to be pretty immune to noise pickup, but a poorly-installed piece (or, eg, a piece of lamp cord used for phone wire), near the wiring to the lights, could be partly at fault.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

Actually the old "JK" Telco (post #207418, reply #2 of 20)

Actually the old "JK" Telco station wire was like doorbell wire, untwisted and it is a great antenna.

I still agree, these should be shielded better. Is there an FCC approval number on them? U/L sticker?

These days there is a lot of offshore stuff coming in without any certification (or bogus stickers)

Greg

ok there's 4 new LED lights (post #207418, reply #3 of 20)

ok there's 4 new LED lights and I'll see if any one is the problem. Don't believe it's a phone wire issue as none of the underhouse phone wire is all that old and is occupying the same space as it did prior to this kitchen remodel, No static problem before recessed lights were added in kitchen a few months ago. The lights are embedded in the ceiling but the distance from the cans to the nearest phone wire is probably at least ten feet but the cans are in the ceiling and the phone wire comes up from the crawlspace so they're really not all that close together, but I suppose ballast interference can even go through walls to affect a phone connection. But the static is on all phone jackseven those  way down the other end of the house. But maybe the fact that the answering device base is the closest of any of them to the LED's would mean interference pick up could happen right there and transfer on to all the other phone lines as well.

tc (post #207418, reply #4 of 20)

Any low voltage lights added (under cabinet for instance)?

How bout cell phone chargers?

Are these lights on a dimmer?

 

 

Static for sure on a radio-my drill charger.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


all interesting questions. (post #207418, reply #5 of 20)

all interesting questions. Flourescent under the counter lights, phone charger way down the end of the house, and the LED's are on a dimmer. Unplug charger and turn off flourescents has no effect on the static but turning off LED lights clears up about 75% of static, and static seems to change based on where the dimmer togggle is. Clearly the LED's are causing static on the phone line and I guess I can always have them off when on the phone but I just wondered if there was anything to be done with the LED's to suppress the interference short of always turning them off when the phone is in use.

tc (post #207418, reply #6 of 20)

Try removing the dimmer and bypass it (scotchloc the switch legs or replace with a non-dimmer switch.)

Eliminate the possibility it's the dimmer.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


I just replied and didn't see (post #207418, reply #7 of 20)

I just replied and didn't see this post.

 

Check where the phone line runs. Does it sit right on the LED cans or near the wiring? Moving the low voltage wiring farther than 12" from the cans and wiring will likely fix it. 

It should be easy to move the low voltage wiring in the attic, presuming that's where it's picking up the interference. 

Hi Tcleveen,   I skimmed (post #207418, reply #8 of 20)

Hi Tcleveen,

 

I skimmed the replies and didn't see this, so if it has already been said please forgive me. 

 

I would guess the problem is regular Romex near a low voltage wire.

You are supposed to keep normal home wiring 12" away from low voltage (e.g. coax, phone) to prevent interference. I'm not a low voltage tech nerd, but there are plenty that can probably tell you why. 

Also any wiring that crosses should be at a 90 degree angle (also, idk why). 

 

I would guess that during the install the phone wiring was already there and the romex for the cans was grouped with or near it. 

 

It could be other things (e.g. phone wire connections got loose when someone in the attic crawled on them), but it's one thing you can check. 

thanks for the ideas. The (post #207418, reply #9 of 20)

thanks for the ideas. The phone wire comes up from a crawlspace and other romex wiring is in the attic, so not much chance for that interaction. Preity much think the dimmer on the 4 led lights must be sending a frequency static out and somehow getting picked up by phone system. Lights off -no static- lights on full most static ,so I'll live with it and make sure the lights are simply not on when making or receiving a land line call (not effecting cell). Just as soon not get rid of the dimmer effect in the kitchen as the led lights are too intense on full, so I'll live with the inconvenience and not change to a simple 2 pole on/off switch.

tc (post #207418, reply #10 of 20)

Have you determined that for those bulbs, you have the proper and recommended dimmer?

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


no I haven't. Maybe I can do (post #207418, reply #11 of 20)

no I haven't. Maybe I can do that via the internet- used a higher price kutron dimmer and figured there wasn't that many options but I'll see about your suggestion.

I assume you meant a............. (post #207418, reply #13 of 20)

Lutron dimmer?

If you go to the Lutron site, they have various classifications of what their dimmers will operate.

or

 

My suggestion-contact customer service there at Lutron-via phone or email and have your info ready-type of can, type of bulb........brand, model etc.

They've been a big help in my work matching ballast/low voltage/LED lamps with the proper dimmers.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


good plan and coincides with (post #207418, reply #14 of 20)

good plan and coincides with what I was going to do nex-t thanks for the advice

tc (post #207418, reply #15 of 20)

Don't forget to post your results, might help someone else.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


fadio frequency static on phone line (post #207418, reply #16 of 20)

Lutron acknowledges that their dimers put out a radio frequency that can be picked up by a variety of electronic devices including wireless in house phones. They recommend a coil that reduces the emmissions but creates a sound all of its own that needs to be baffled which is a curious solution. Link: 

The static that you are hearing on the phone line is Radio Frequency Interference. Here is a great resource explaining RFI and ways to reduce it. http://www.lutron.com/en-US/ResourceLibrary/360484.pdf. The static would not go away with a CL dimmer. Inside of our dimmer, the actual dimming is controlled by a Triac. It turns the lights off and on 120 times per second. This causes a vibration, which causes the RFI. There are RFI chokes available for sale, although not by Lutron. Electronics stores should have these

Whelp (post #207418, reply #17 of 20)

Didn't help you much in the "here's a free fix", but at least the problem is narrowed down.

Let me know if you do in fact  get this figured out in a reasonable manner.

 

sorry I couldn't have been of more help.

A Great Place for Information, Comraderie, and a Sucker Punch.

Remodeling Contractor just outside the Glass City.


http://www.quittintime.com/

 


That kinda sucks -- they (post #207418, reply #18 of 20)

That kinda sucks -- they admit that the dimmers are "noisy", but don't supply a solution.  You can go to Radio Shack or maybe a place that sells computer parts and get snap-on ferrite "chokes", but they're generally bulky and not apt to fit inside the dimmer box.

If you do get them, ideally the chokes should be placed on the hot/neutral pair feeding into the dimmer and on the hot/neutral pair feeding out.  Of course, the wires are likely not divided up that way, so whatever way works.

And, if you get so motivated, write a letter to the FCC to complain about a likely Part 15 violation.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville

LED Interferance (post #207418, reply #19 of 20)

I found that LED bulbs cause garage door openers not to function. I should say that I really like LED bulbs as compared to CFL's. But when I replaced the CFL's in a garage door opener (Genie) I noticed that my remotes would work only if the LED bulbs were off. So when the door was down and the lamps off, the remote works fine. But when the lamps are on, as they stay for a minute or two, or any time you cross the safety beam, the remotes would not work. Once the lamps shut off after the time out, the remotes worked fine again. I think the lamps create an interferace at the reciever. This is a rolling code type unit.

I have to tell you it took me a while to figure this out. As soon as I took the LED bulbs out of the opener, all worked fine again. 

I've got one LED in my GDO, (post #207418, reply #20 of 20)

I've got one LED in my GDO, and I haven't noticed this problem.


Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.  --Herman Melville