Why do light bulbs blow ?
Help! My light bulb has blown and fused all my lights!
We've all been there; you walk into your house after a hard day at work, go to switch on the main light and phut, darkness!
Don't panic! When filament or incandescent light bulbs go to that lightbulb graveyard in the sky, they tend to trip out today’s modern circuit breaker fuses and 99% of the time it is just a question of resetting it, replacing the bulb and light is restored.
There are a variety of causes for light bulbs to blow and detailed below are just a few:
Cheap unbranded lamps – buy branded quality light bulbs such as Crompton, GE, Osram, Sylvania, Bell and Phillips.
Loose connection in the lamp holder – This causes the electricity to “arc” between the bulb contacts and the lamp holder contact causing heat to build up and blow the lamp.
Vibration - before I installed low voltage Halogen fittings in my lounge, my son whose bedroom was above, regularly did his budding rock star impersonation, causing the original filament spotlights to fail on a weekly basis. The filament in a light bulb is extremely long, thin and wound into a tight coil, therefore – Dummy guitarists = vibration = blown light bulbs. Moving table/floor lamps when switched on, doors slamming, etc, all contribute to shortened light bulb life and their early demise.
Voltage fluctuations – Bulbs are very susceptible to this, an over voltage of only 5% can shorten bulb life by 50%! People living near electricity sub-stations and areas of large commercial activity experience this – Solution? Fit a dimmer switch instead of your normal on/off light switch – this gives a buffering effect that helps to smooth out voltage spikes.
As life evolves new light bulb technology will eventually replace the incandescent light bulb with modern equivalents such as halogen, compact fluorescent, dichroic, low energy, low voltage, mr11 & mr16 lamps, halogen Hi-Spot, par halogen bulbs such as Gu10, halogen par 16, halogen par 20, SES 25 halogen par, halogen par 30, halogen par 38, halolux, halospot, halopin, and high intensity discharge light bulbs (HID).