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How To Safely Remove A Broken Light Bulb

By Dave Rongey - Summary:

Here is the Process for Safely Removing a Broken Light Bulb

Process for Removing a Broken Light Bulb

Question: The light bulb in my refrigerator burned out and when I tried to twist it out it broke and I can’t get the whole bulb out.

Background: Carol, a Homeowner from New York, New York

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical question Carol.
Carol, here is the process to remove a broken light bulb:

Removing a Broken Light Bulb

Here is the Process for Safely Removing a Broken Light Bulb

  1. Unplug the refrigerator to disconnect the electrical power source.
  2. Use a leather gloves or a heavy towel or wash cloth to carefully remove the base of the light bulb.
  3. If the glass of the bulb brakes off then you may try using a potato by pressing it into the base of the light and carefully unscrew the light bulb.
  4. Be sure to throw away the potato which may contain broken glass.
  5. If the light bulb base is really stuck in the socket, that’s when I use a small screw driver and needle nose pliers to gently separate the bulb base from the light socket, then repeat the methods above to twist the bulb base out of the light socket.

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2 Responses to “How To Safely Remove A Broken Light Bulb”
  1. Dave Rongey says:

    Hi Caroline,
    Wow, that does sound like quite a challenge, here are some suggestions:
    A small amount of lubricating spray may help, however the spray should be non-conductive and clearly approved for electrical use. Use the spray sparingly, and with the refrigerator unplugged. Use a cloth to clean up any excess spray.
    The plastic covering over the lamp should have clips that are molded in on each side at one end, usually near the lamp socket. Gently squeeze this area slightly to remove the cover.
    Be sure to replace the bulb with a heavy duty Appliance Bulb specifically for refrigerators, which will be sure to last long so you don’t have to do this very often. When your finished plug the refrigerator back in and check the light.
    I hope this helps, and Be Careful!

  2. caroline says:

    Refrigerator light bulb is in a terribly awkward position on the “ceiling” of the interior near the door.The light bulb is in a plastic “cage” and the bulb part pointed toward the door hinge. Trying to grab bulb and turn it is a back breaking challenge. Can I spray the bulb with WD40 at it’s base? I can’t figure out how to get the plastic cage off. Any suggestions? Thanks.