11 Jan

Troubleshooting Your Outdoor LED Sign

Troubleshooting Your Outdoor LED Sign

Does troubleshooting your LED sign sound way too complicated? Don’t worry, it’s really not that bad!

In fact, many of the most common LED issues stem from one root cause—power. If your LED sign isn’t getting enough power, you can run into all sorts of problems.

Let’s go over some of the most common power failures and how they occur to give you a better understanding of your sign and why it might not be running at 100%.

You should verify the power supply immediately if any of the following occur:

  • The sign is using a generator
  • The sign goes blank, and you’re unable to communicate with it
  • The sign is using any sort of portable power
  • The sign is still not working after standard troubleshooting
  • The sign is using multiple circuits with some appearing blank

Voltage Issues

Electrical devices are all set up to operate on particular voltage ranges. A vast majority of these devices are meant to work on either 120 or 230 volts, with an operating range of plus/minus 10%.

Running a sign designed for 120 volts on 230 volts is a bad idea, and vice versa—we’re talking about major damage.

Some indicators of voltage drop include:

  • The sign being located very far from its power source
  • LED sign components work briefly but fail over and over
  • LED components or the sign itself drop off at random intervals

Voltage drops off as it travels through wires, meaning less power is available for your sign.

Wire size also plays a role with voltage issues. Smaller wires can cause damage to your sign, causing a voltage drop, melting and overheating. Look out for:

  • Melting or discoloration in your wires and connectors
  • Undersized extension cords that aren’t fit for commercial use
  • Voltage drop between the sign and its power source

Another common voltage issue is loose connections, which happen when electrical connections in your LED sign become looser. These can occur during installation or servicing, and can cause excess heat to build up. Look out for:

  • Signs only working in warm weather
  • Signs flickering off and on
  • Power measured on the terminal side but not on the sign

Your sign’s main power source can also run into issues, such as with a break in the power line or a problem with your power panel (either in your building or sign). Check for:

  • Tripped breakers
  • The sign is blank on both sides, with zero communication

Finally, we have breaker amperage. Your breaker interrupts the flow of electricity from a circuit as protection against shorts and overloads.
LED signs draw a specific numbers of amps, and using the right breaker is critical. If your sign exceeds your breaker’s limit, your breaker will trip.

Troubleshooting Made Easy

LED signs might seem incredibly complex, but many of the problems you might run into during the life of your sign can be solved with few quick steps.

Your power supply’s health is important for the health of your sign, so make sure everything is squared away on the electrical side of things before you start tearing out your hair.

About Daniel Soriano

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About MEGA LED

Mega LED Technology is a leading USA manufacturer of programmable LED signs. From our humble beginnings in 2006, our company has expanded leaps and bounds by staying committed to our goal: to provide the highest quality products at the most competitive prices while delivering unrivaled customer service and support.

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