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Why New Light Bulbs May Not Work


By Dave Rongey - Summary:

Light Fixture Sockets, New Light Bulbs and Home Electrical Wiring

Light Fixture Sockets and New Light Bulbs

Electrical Repairs Question: I have 5 Keyless Porcelain Lamp holders that I use for outdoor lighting inside a glass block enclosure. I have been using regular standard light bulbs each 25 watts without problems for the last 9 years. Recently two of the light bulbs went out. I replaced it with brand new bulbs but none of them are lighting up. they are all good bulbs, lighting up on other lamps. I tried using one of the existing bulbs from the other existing ones that are not burned out and those older bulbs are lighting up. So the sockets are all working fine. But none of the new bulbs are working in any of the sockets.

Any help would be great. I have even replaced the socket, new bulbs don’t light up but existing ones do?

Background: Bill, a Homeowner from Los Angeles, CA

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical repairs question Bill.
Bill, one factor may be that there are some light bulbs that have a slightly different design to the base where the center connection is not recessed down as far. Another condition may be that the center metal connection down in the socket is bent down so far that it will not make connection with the light bulb. This can be adjusted with the circuit off and using a small screw driver to carefully bend the connection terminal upwards. Be careful and do make sure the power is off before making this adjustment.  I should point out that porcelain key less lamp holders are not rated for outdoor use and because of this they may be experiencing deterioration from being exposed to moisture.

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