Breather Valve - Explained

Breather Valve - Explained

The History

Moisture in lights used to be a concerning sight as it was a sign that the seals on the lights had failed. This was due to the lights being glued together as a way to achieve a waterproof seal. With the globes or LEDs inside generating heat, the air inside would also heat up and expand, putting pressure on the glued seal. Eventually, through use and duty cycles, the pressure inside would cause the seals to fail, compromising the waterproofing and so moisture would start to appear. 

The Mechanism 

To battle the internal pressure and ensure our lights last a lifetime, we have equipped each one of our lights with a breather valve. A breather valve is a small device that allows hot air inside the housing to be vented out, keeping the atmospheric pressure inside the light, equal to outside. 

Condensation 

During the process of venting hot air out, cooler, more dense air will be pulled into the housing. With cooler air being prone to containing moisture, condensation may occur when the temperature on the outside of the lens is much lower than the temperature inside the light. If this occurs, there is no need to worry about the condensation coming in contact with the electronics or LEDs, as the water particles will only condense on the front lens where the temperature difference exists. 

The Solution

As the breather valve is designed to vent out hot air, once the moisture inside the light is heated up, it will turn to a gas form and be vented out through the breather valve. Sometimes in more humid and wetter environments, the condensation may build up more or take slightly longer to vent out, so we have a few effective ways to speed up the process of removing the condensation. 

 

Step 1. 

Locate the breather valve on the unit. 
Using a flat head screwdriver, unscrew the breather valve and place it on a clean surface, making sure to avoid contaminants on the thread or O-ring. 
With the breather valve removed, more air will circulate through the light and will help the moisture turn to gas form again. You can also turn on the lights to generate some heat which will also speed up the process of venting the condensation. Reinstall the breather valve once complete. 

Step 2. 

Remove the breather valve as mentioned in Step 1 and place the driving light in direct sunlight on a dry day. The heat from the sun will help the moisture evaporate and heat up the air inside, increasing the air circulation. Once cleared, reinstall the breather valve again. 

If you have tried the above processes and are still unable to clear the condensation, we are here to help! Please send us an email with some photos, or feel free to get in contact with our team at  (03) 9071 2990