Optrel Solarmatic Comfort welding helmet

I have two Optrel Solarmatic Comfort auto-darkening welding helmets. One has been used quite a bit and is about 3 or 4 years old. The other one has hardly been used at all and is only about 1 year old. They are both stored in clear plastic sweater bags when not in use in my garage. They both work flawlessly during daylight hours. After dark it is another story. I think I have plenty of light for working at night but both helmets refuse to darken reliably with the lighting that I have. I have 4' fluorescent lights in the ceiling. I have tried putting them directly under a halogen work light but even that did not work.

Has anyone else with one of these helmets had this problem? Do I need to add a bunch more lights or what?

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I have used an Optrel Solarmatic for a couple years. It works fine in light and dark ambient light conditions. I'm not a solar powered auto-darkening helmet expert, but I believe the solar chip is powered from the arc flash, so it shouldn't have anything to do with the lighting in your shop. Sorry can't be of more help.

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