There’s no doubt that light bulbs are a simple, yet profound and often overlooked electrical invention. Without light bulbs, humanity would still be stuck with candle light after sundown. Most people don’t notice the significance of light bulbs until one blows, leaving them in the dark.
Unfortunately, sometimes light bulbs in certain fixtures can blow far too quickly, or even immediately, leaving you in the dark far too often. If you have a few problematic light bulb fixtures in your house, learning more about what causes the problem can help you keep the lights on for longer.
Can Faulty Wiring Cause Light Bulbs to Burn Out?
Blaming faulty wiring for blowing light bulbs won’t help you solve your problem. Faulty wiring is vague and undescriptive. To say that faulty wiring is causing your light bulbs to blow isn’t any more helpful than to blame bad weather. To solve the problem, you need to know where the faulty wiring is so it can be fixed.
If you already got an electrician out to look at your problem and you were told faulty wiring was the issue, but the electrician was unable to tell you where the wiring problem is, then chances are your problem isn’t caused by wiring at all.
Sometimes the reason behind your blowing light bulbs can be simple, other times it might require some investigation to get to the root of your problem. Regardless, don’t assume your light bulbs are blowing due to “faulty wiring” and simply leave the problem to persist. If faulty wiring really were the cause, it might pose a risk, which you’d surely want to know about.
Causes for Light Bulbs Burn out Too Quickly
There are some common causes for light bulbs burning out too quickly and some of them are surprisingly simple to fix.
Bad Light Bulbs
Sometimes the reason why a light bulb burns out quickly isn’t so much about your home’s wiring or the light bulb fixture. Often, bulbs burning out are just poor quality from the start. Buying a different brand of bulb may solve your problem.
This can especially be the case if you find that light bulbs in your house burn out quickly, but inconsistently. In other words, you might replace the same light bulb twice within six months, only for it to last up to a year the next time you replaced it. Assuming there’s no difference in the type and brand of light bulb you bought and that light bulbs across different fixtures show no consistency in how long they last, inconsistent bulb quality could be your problem.
LED bulbs are a high quality bulb alternative that can last much longer than traditional bulbs or compact fluorescent lights.
Before you rejoice, however, there are other underlying problems that could manifest in a similar way that aren’t quite as simple to fix.
Too High Voltage
Another problem that can have symptoms similar to bad light bulbs, is if your light bulbs are getting too much power supply. American homes typically receive 120v power supply, however, the 120v power supply isn’t as consistent as you may think.
It often happens that some homes receive a slightly higher voltage. Most appliances have no problem running on a power supply that’s a bit too high, but light bulbs can be sensitive to changes in voltage.
To identify this problem, you’ll need to measure the voltage at different electrical outlets in your house, especially in areas where your light bulbs often blow. If the voltage consistently reads higher than 120v, this is most probably your problem. Don’t worry if you don’t know how to test the voltage of your electric outlets, or if you don’t have the equipment. You can hire a qualified local electrician – it’s quick, easy and should be relatively cheap if measuring voltage is your only requirement.
Switching to 130v globes can solve your problem if it’s only in certain areas of your home. On the other hand, if you’re constantly replacing light bulbs everywhere in your house, calling your electrical provider might be a smarter choice.
Light Fixture Vibration
When light bulbs are often exposed to fixture vibration, it can shorten their lifespan. Examples of light bulbs that are at risk for high fixture vibration include light bulbs attached to ceiling fans, garage door openers or below rooms with lots of activity (such as children’s rooms or indoor gyms).
Buying light bulbs that tougher is the easiest way to get your bulbs to last. Rough service bulbs, 130v bulbs and LED globes are all great options for difficult light fixtures.
Light Bulbs are Overheating
Using light bulbs with the wrong wattage for a fixture can cause your globes to overheat. This is because your globes will heat up unevenly, which leads the them burning out prematurely.
Light bulbs in closed fixtures are also at higher risk for burning out quickly, as there isn’t enough ventilation in a closed fixture to keep the bulb cool enough.
Switching to a lower bulb wattage, as well as using bulbs that are approved for use in closed fixtures could solve your problem. Alternatively, you could replace your fixtures so all of them are the same, in which case you can buy the same light bulbs for any place in your house.
Faulty Light Fixtures
In some cases, your blowing light bulbs have nothing to do with the globes you use or your power supply. Your light fixtures might be the problem. Especially in cases where one specific bulb in your home keeps burning out constantly, or even immediately after installation, the fixture is most likely to blame.
Screwing a light bulb into a fixture too tightly can permanently damage the socket. Even if you know how to change a light bulb the right way, without using too much force, if any other person has ever screwed a light bulb too tightly into one of the light fixtures in your home, it could be permanently damaged.
Seeing as excessive force can damage your light fixtures, you should also exercise caution not to use too much force whenever you’re inserting a new light bulb. Learn how tightly your bulbs need to be screwed in so they’re not too loose or tight.
Poorly Installed Fixtures or Wiring
While faulty wiring is a vague and often isn’t the problem with your light bulbs that burn out immediately, there are cases where poor connections can problems. When your either fixtures or wiring aren’t properly connected and there are wires that are half loose, you might find that some of your light bulbs burn out within a matter of days.
Worse yet, poorly connected wires are a danger, as they can lead to electrical burns in your home. If you’ve explored some other options and your have reason to suspect that your light bulbs burning out could be the result of loose electrical wiring, you should contact an electrician to help you fix the problem as soon as possible.
What if My Circuit Breaker Trips?
Tripped circuit breakers and blown fuses are normally caused by a short in an electrical circuit. This could be because of a defective plug or light socket. Whatever the reason, you shouldn’t reset the breaker until the underlying problem has been fixed, so calling in an electrician to help before proceeding is the best thing to do.
When to Call an Electrician?
It’s frustrating when your light bulbs burn out at a faster pace than you’re able to replace them. On top of this, the underlying reason why your light bulbs are burning out could also pose a risk for an electrical fire.
If you’ve explored options such as installing 130v bulbs, or your problem seems to be unrelated to basic causes such as vibration, overheating due to closed fixtures or a bad brand of bulb, then calling an electrician is your best option. Especially if you find that a single light in your house is burning out on a regular basis, perhaps even monthly, this may be cause for concern.
A qualified, licensed electrician can help you replace damages fixtures, fix loose wiring and test the voltage supply to your home. For electrician services in Miami, you can contact Miami Electric Wizards today. We are a qualified electrician company who will help you get to the root of your problem.