I may have written about this before but i don’t remember if i did so here goes anyway.
This are some of the Frequent Asked Questions i get from customers.I will start with the #1 question i get more often .
Q. When i turn on my sign it flickers for a split second and then turns off.
A.- The transformer has a safety circuit inside that does that because it senses that there is something wrong with the neon and it shuts the transformer off . (It could be a broken neon section , a shorted wire or a burned up section , burned up section means it died of old age or of natural causes.
Q.- I bought a neon sign just a year ago and it stopped working can you fix it.
A.- Send me a picture of your sign and i will let you know.
after getting the picture by E-mail i find out it’s one of the neon sign sold on E-bay directly from china , so i have to tell the owner that i can’t fix those signs because they are made with a very small diameter glass that does not exist in the US.
Q.- How long does a neon sign last
A.- Neon Signs or Neon Beer signs made in the USA can last up to 15 or 20 years if you do not keep them on 24/7 , if you do then they won’t last more than 10 years , first thing to go is the transformer.That goes also for any neon sign , neon signs even the very well made ones with good quality have a limited amount of years of life but eventually do go out, a very well made neon sign can last up to 20 years but that same sign if it’s on 24/7 will only last 10 years , i have seen store front signs on 24/7 even in the day when it is not needed , and the neon will still last for years but less years than if they would have turned it off when not needed.
I always recommend a timer , you can find timers at Lowes or Home Depot for beer signs.
If you buy cheap neon signs from china then they can stop working any time , but if they work for 3 years you are lucky.
Q.-How can i paint my sign, the original paint is falling off.
A.- You can not paint it or retouch it , trying to do so would be worse than what you have,.
The manufacturers in their efforts to reduce their production costs came up with the idea of doing all the signs with either clear glass for red sections and then painting them from the outside with red paint or using white glass and painting it yellow or green or purple , that way they are using the least expensive glass and getting the same results as if they had made the neon with real red glass or real green or yellow glass which is more expensive. One reason the paint falls is because some people put the sign outdoors and the humidity and sun will make the paint flake and fall , the painted beer neon signs are not meant to be outdoors.
Q.-My neon sign is starting to smell funny and it’s humming a lot
A.- That is because it has an older transformer (Metal box and heavy) and in the inside of the transformer it’s filled with tar and once the transformer starts to die out in some cases it will heat up and start to melt the tar inside and some of it evaporates and that is the smell you get , sometimes the tar starts to come out of the transformer and drip and make a mess , the excessive buzzing sound also indicates that there is something wrong with the transformer, if you are experiencing this best thing to do is to turn it off and replace the transformer with an electronic one.
Q.-Can i send you the whole sign so you can repair it?
A.- No, it will break even more in shipping, just send the broken section taped to a piece of cardboard and bubble wrap it .
Q.- My sign broke and i tried to glue it together but it didn’t work,can you fix it?
A.- Once a neon section breaks the gas escapes and the inside phosphorus powder comes loose and most of the time the section is not repairable that is why 90% of the time i make a new neon section instead of trying to repair an old damaged neon section.
Q.-What is the best company to ship a neon sign ?
A.- Greyhound , if you have to ship a complete neon sign greyhound buses is the best company because they do not have this hub places where all the boxes are sorted out in conveyor belts, all the boxes are only hand handled, but there is still a risk.
Q.- What is the best way to ship a complete neon sign.?
A.- You have to use strong cardboard boxes and box the sign in a box that is exactly the size of the sign, you also have to put foam in between the neon to try to make it not move at all.Then you put that box inside another box , the outside box has to be at least 3 inches larger than the inner box on all sides and you fill the space with bubble wrap (Large one) enough to make the inner box not move (Do not use peanuts type of filling). Sometimes what breaks a neon sign in shipping is not that somebody or something hit the box, but the sudden change in direction, like when being sorted in a conveyor belt by the sorting arms or a fall from a truck, in other words the G forces that makes all the neon move inside and eventually break it , that is why it’s very important to try make the neon as immovable as possible .
This are just some of the questions i get i hope this info. will be of use to you