Saturday, November 5, 2011

My Lightbulbs Keep Burning Out on Me!

I have been working on a huge, time consuming project that I will hopefully be sharing with you in a day or two.  I'm dying to be finished with it.  In the mean time, I have been having what I thought was a weird, electrical problem.

For some reason, every time I replace a light bulb lately, the bulb snaps and burns out within 30 minutes.  It did this a couple of times with one lamp, and now the light in my office.  So I started to think it must be some kind of electrical problem.

After a quick google, guess what??  It is a very common problem, and a very easy fix!  You can go here Askthebuilder for a more detailed and professional explanation, but I'll give you a quick over view.

In the bottom of each light socket, there is a brass strip.  This strip should be slightly angled up to connect properly with the bottom of the light bulb.

On the bottom of the light bulb, there is a small silver blob made from solder.  If the brass strip is not touching the bottom of the light bulb in the proper manner, the solder melts and the light bulb no longer makes the proper connection.  The light goes out.

The fix?  Simple.  You turn off the power to the light.  You should likely turn off the breaker to the light for extra safety.  I used my fingernail to reach into the socket and gently pull up the brass strip.  Insert a new bulb and voila!  The sockets are all now working again.

How do you prevent this problem?  Screw your bulbs in with the power on.  When the light comes on, turn the bulb only until the bulb feels secure.  Over screwing the bulb into the socket is what pushes the brass strip down and creates the problem.

Thank you Ask the Builder's Tim Carver for saving me from calling my ex husband, the cost of an electrician and the expense of buying endless boxes of light bulbs.  I love a quick fix that I can do myself!


  1. Great tip. Thanks for sharing. Always a good thing when you don't have to call the ex;)

  2. I've never had this problem before but am definitely saving this tip for the future. I'm hosting a giveaway at DIY Home Sweet Home.
    I would love for you to stop by and check it out.