What Size Light Bulb Is Safe For Fixtures?
|By Dave Rongey - Summary:
Light Fixtures Light Sockets Lamps and Light Bulbs: Guide for Selecting the Right Size Light Bulb, CAUTION: Installing the Wrong Size Light Bulb Can be Dangerous!
The Wrong Size Light Bulb Can Be Dangerous!
- An over simple question to ask here, but places on the internet have incomplete or wrong answers.
- I have an existing light fixture with five “standard” base lamp sockets. Each socket says 660Watt 250Volt.
- I know what it means when a single sockets fixture says 60W/125V, but I’m unclear on what this means and in particular I need to know what the maximum watt bulb I can use in each socket is.
- Obviously it isn’t running at 250V, and it seems clear that whatever the 660W means it covers all the sockets not just one. Does it mean I could put up to a 132W bulb in each socket?
I feel fairly safe just putting a 60W bulb in each one, but we’d actually like more if possible. This is a chandelier kind of fixture, and the bulbs are the small globe-type bulbs, 14W CF bulbs put in by the previous owner – the light is inadequate and even after being on for a while, these flicker too much. I understand there are more expensive CF bulbs that are better, but this light gets turned off and on a lot, so I’m leaning towards going with incandescent. Thus the desire to know about maximum wattage.
Background: Ed, a Homeowner from Amherst, Massachusetts.
Thanks for your home electrical question Ed.
Light Fixtures, Lamps, Light Sockets and Light Bulbs
Guide for Selecting the Right Size Light Bulb
- Light Socket Rating
- The printing on the socket is what the socket is rated for, and I would only trust that if the socket had a UL stamp on it.
- Light Fixture Specifications
- Just because the socket has its rating listed you still need to see what the light fixture manufacturer specifies for the type and highest watt size light bulb that is allowed.
- Light Bulb Size
- Installing the wrong size light bulbs can be dangerous because of the amount of heat that can be produced from the light bulb.
More about Light Bulbs and Light Fixtures
- An informative series about do-it-yourself lighting for the home that will reveal several options for improving your home lighting. This guide will help educate you about several options and styles available for your next home improvement project.
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all projects.
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