Low Voltage Lighting Transformer Problems

Updated February 21, 2017

Low voltage lighting systems provide a soft, glowing illumination that accentuates a home's exterior at night. However, that lighting can fail if its main component, the transformer, is not working properly.


A transformer converts the amount of electrical current flowing through a circuit, typically from high to low current. In the case of low voltage lighting systems, the main transformer changes the home's 120 volt supply to an easier-to-manage 12 volts.


Like any electrical device, a transformer can develop problems over time. If a transformer is unusually hot, make sure its cooling system is properly functioning, such as fan rotation. Also, the circuit can be overloaded, so verify that the lighting attached does not exceed the power limitations of what the transformer can adequately supply.


A transformer can also stop supplying power. Verify that the internal winding of the transformer is not hindered by debris. If the winding does not function after checking the area, it is possible that the transformer has failed and needs repair or replacement.

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Writing professionally since 2010, Amy Rodriguez cultivates successful cacti, succulents, bulbs, carnivorous plants and orchids at home. With an electronics degree and more than 10 years of experience, she applies her love of gadgets to the gardening world as she continues her education through college classes and gardening activities.