Is it safe to leave a bug zapper unattended?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by fleabag, Jul 28, 2009.

  1. fleabag

    fleabag Banned

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    I was wondering if it was safe to leave such a high voltage device running 24/7 outside on a patio in an "attempt" to get rid of/control a midge infestation in our yard. I'm also questioning whether it is even worthwhile to be running it even during the daytime.
     
  2. guyver01

    guyver01 Lifer

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    for a minute there, i read that as "midget" infestation

    i was like.. WTF???



     
  3. Sea Moose

    Sea Moose Diamond Member

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    those things shouldnt be left unsupervised, fire hazard
     
  4. DrPizza

    DrPizza Administrator Elite Member Goat Whisperer
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    minimal fire hazard. Just don't let it get clogged with bugs. And, don't leave it in contact with or above a surface which is flammable.

    edit: and I've never heard of one being a fire hazard. I just googled it after Sea Moose mentioned it. Drive around at 3 in the morning at times of the year when the bugs are bad & you'll see hundreds of the things left on.
     
  5. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    LOL they would only be a fire hazard if used indoors where combustible fumes/vapors could accumulate and an arc could ignite them. The HV transformer is current limited so it can run with its secondary shorted continuously and not be a problem. The primary winding also has an embedded thermal fuse as well just as any class P electromagnetic fluorescent ballast has. They are no more of a hazard than a fluorescent fixture when installed and operated as instructed in the owners manual. They would not be UL/CSA listed if this were not the case.
     
  6. Sea Moose

    Sea Moose Diamond Member

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    damn your superior juicy supple brain
     
  7. DrPizza

    DrPizza Administrator Elite Member Goat Whisperer
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    But I think that bugs are flammable if allowed to accumulate in sufficient quantities, say 4 or 5 years worth.
     
  8. Sea Moose

    Sea Moose Diamond Member

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    why is everyone picking on me tonight
     
  9. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    If any surface goes untouched for that long whether its bugs or dust there are far more concerns than bugs I'd be worrying about. When properly used OUTDOORS birds will take care of the remains of moths that don't get completely ablated to oblivion. :laugh:

    There must be a real bug problem up there in NY and the EMF from all those zappers going 24/7 is interfering with my sarcasm radar. ;)
     
  10. Fritzo

    Fritzo Lifer

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    A fogger and watering your grass with pesticide would be a lot more effective.
     
  11. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    Pest control operators, extension agencies, and entomologists all agree on the (relative) ineffectiveness of the electronic insect lantern. Yet sales remain strong. The invention is ingenious that anyone from a child to a triple PhD can see the same thing - the lightning in a bottle effect and pests getting killed on the spot. Some people sit outside and watch the sparks and hear the sizzle knowing their money spent is working. :laugh:
     
  12. rh71

    rh71 No Lifer

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    how safe with infants around?

    Damn the houseflies... damn 'em.
     
  13. fleabag

    fleabag Banned

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    Well my concern with the contraption is that if there is a gust of wind causing it to fall or if someone watering managed to direct the stream of water from a hose directly into her patio/into the zapper.
     
  14. BoomerD

    BoomerD Lifer

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    Unless you have some mega-zapper designed to kill deer and bears, your bug-zapper probably isn't "HIGH VOLTAGE."



    If a gust of wind can knock your killing device down...you've done a poor job of installation...Mine has been outside in 60+ MPH winds and hasn't fallen off the hook...and it's been there for years.

    If someone directs a stream of water into your zapper...be sure to take lots of video and post on youtube for PROFIT! :D


    I don't know where you live, but in MOST places in the USA, all exterior outlets are supposed to be connected to a GFCI outlet/breaker, so water into the unit won't do anything.
     
  15. Fritzo

    Fritzo Lifer

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    There's a lot of products out there. Some are safer than others. The fogger is probably the safest.
     
  16. DrPizza

    DrPizza Administrator Elite Member Goat Whisperer
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    Why do you think there are sparks when bugs land there?
    http://home.howstuffworks.com/bug-zapper.htm


    Also, bug zappers are completely worthless for killing mosquitos. However, as the OP is interested in reducing the midge population, his zapper is ideal for that application.
     
  17. fleabag

    fleabag Banned

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    Do these bug zappers work during the day time? I was thinking that the sun's UV rays and light would outshine and attract the insects far more than the bug zapper would, making the bug zapper only good for at night.
     
  18. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    Bug zappers should be on a GFCI. If you were to hose it down the leakage would be sufficient to trip the GFCI. Even without a GFCI you would not get shocked unless you foolishly touched it.

    These units can definitely be effective against mosquitoes - just not in stock forum. Provide an attractant for mosquitoes nearby and they will be eliminated.

    Since the blacklight blue lamps are the attractants these devices should only be operated in evening (starting around dusk) through the early part of the morning. 24/7 use is not necessary and just wastes power and lamp life. Installation of a photoelectric switch so the unit runs only during the night time is recommended.

    Avoid units with a killing grid voltage below 3600VAC. Better units are over 4500 volts and the best ones are close to 6000 volts. Current is limited to 9mA so higher voltage units produce more heat (i²R) which means the grid wires stay cleaner. It's still a good idea to disassemble the unit at the end of the season for those in temperate climates to thoroughly clean the wires. NEVER use steel wool or a brillo pad as it will damage the anodizing/galvanizing protection and the wires will rust. Rusty wires will really impede the effectiveness of the unit!
     
  19. imported_weadjust

    imported_weadjust Golden Member

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    I have one on my screened in porch. It's been on 24/7 for the last five years. The bulb usually has to be replaced once a year. I clean it when I change the bulb. No problems here.
     
  20. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    You only need to relamp every other season if unit is run "dusk to dawn" scheduling. ;)
     
  21. Pacfanweb

    Pacfanweb Lifer

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    I left mine on from about April to November last year. Did fine.