Why a Lamp Holder or Socket May Not Be Working
Don in Nebraska Asks: What could be the problem with a light socket that is not working? How to Repair a Lamp Holder and Why a Lamp holder May Not Work, Here are a few things that I have found that will prevent a light socket or lamp holder from working.
How to Get That Light Socket Working
Electrical Question: What could be the problem with a light socket that is not working?
I have a dual flood lamp motion detector light where only one of the lights work.
- I replaced the lamp on the bad side twice, but only one light is side still not working.
- The other side works just fine.
This electrical wiring question came from: Don, a Homeowner from Lincoln, Nebraska.
See more about Home Wiring for Nebraska
Additional Comments: 1st time using
Thanks for your electrical wiring question Don.
How to Repair a Lamp Holder and Why a Lamp holder May Not Work
Application: Light Fixture Wiring.
Skill Level: Beginner to Intermediate – Best performed by a Licensed Electrician.
Tools Required: Basic Hand Tools and Safe Ladder.
Estimated Time: Depends on personal experience, the light fixture and access to the light fixture.
Precaution: Identify the light fixture circuit, turn it OFF and Tag it with a Note before working with the wiring.
Notice: Replacement parts for the light fixture should be compatible with the type of lamps that have been installed.
Problems with Older Lamp Sockets and Holders and How to Get Them Working Again
- Here are a few things that I have found that will prevent a light socket or lamp holder from working:
- A loose or unconnected wire in the light fixture wiring. Yes, every once and a while a wire can slip out of the wire nut or splice connector. Make a visual inspection and make the necessary repair.
- A depressed or worn out center socket contact. This is the center metal contact inside the socket itself. Some light bulbs have a deeper base that can bend this metal piece down really far back into the socket, while other light bulb bases are not as deep which can prevent the center contact point of the light bulb base from making connection with the light socket contact. This is corrected by turning off the power to the light fixture and gently pull the depressed socket contact up slightly.
- A broken wire or bad connection to the base of the light socket. Every once and a while, a rivet wears out or the robot that makes these sockets sneezes (or something) and a faulty socket is produced. This is also called a lemon light fixture.
- A bad light bulb (but you already tried this.)
The Following will assist you with Light Sockets and Lamp Holders
Installing Motion Detector and Security Light Fixtures
- Installing motion detector lighting fixtures provide security and energy savings and they can easily replace an existing exterior wall fixture.
Be Careful and Be Safe - Never Work on Energized Circuits!
Consult your Local Building Department about Permits and Inspections for all Electric Wiring Projects.
The Safest Way to Test Electrical Devices and Identify Electric Wiring!The Non-Contact Electrical Tester
This is a testing tool that I have had in my personal electrical tool pouch for years, and is the first test tool I grab to help identify electrical wiring. It is a Non-contact tester, [amazon.com], I use for the detection of Standard Voltage in Cables, Cords, Circuit Breakers, Lighting Fixtures, Switches, Outlets and Wires. Simply insert the end of the tester into an outlet, lamp socket, or hold the end of the tester against the wire you wish to test. Very handy and easy to use.
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