How to stop a hps bulb flickering
HPS Lights are very common amongst growers and have been the standard in lighting for many years, but they are not without fault. Some growers may have issues such as the hps bulb flickering and making a high-pitched noise. This issue is easy to fix and should be addressed immediately, especially if the grower is using an old-school bulky ballast as they are notoriously dangerous and should be swapped over for a digital ballast right away.
What to check
Firstly, ensure the bulb is screwed in tight to the holder to make a strong connection. If the flickering persists, they should try using a different bulb as this is the cheapest component in the setup and is often the issue.
If that does not work, the grower should try using a spare reflector in case the lamp holder is faulty and causing the issue.
Finally, if those two steps did not fix the issue, the problem will lay with the ballast. This is the most expensive part of the setup unfortunately but the grower should stop using it asap as faulty electrics are the main cause of house fires.
Obviously waiting for three separate deliveries is very time consuming and replacing the light as quickly as possible is crucial. The grower could consider ordering all three replacement parts at the same time (bulb, reflector, ballast) find the faulty component, and then return the other two items.
Below is an image of an old magnetic ballast (known to be dangerous) next to a new digital ballast. Both ballasts will work with all bulbs and light reflectors.