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Why Light Bulbs Burn Out

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A photo of an incandescent light bulb.

A photo of an incandescent light bulb.

Tim Thiele

I'm often asked several times a month why light bulbs seem to burn out so quickly. It seems that some seem to burn forever and others won't last a week. So what's the deal? Is it just a bad batch of bulbs or could it be something else?

Over the years I've found a pattern to bulb failure, There seems to be a few variables that contribute to failure and there is a manufacturer, that I have noticed, whose bulbs seem to have more trouble than others. In fact, I generally ask if it is that brand of bulb that they are having trouble with and the answer is usually the same, "yes".

In my article, Are Your Light Bulbs Burning Out Early?, you'll discover the things that cause bulb failure and some that are just a design flaw of the manufacturer. Often times, it is just operator error. It could be as simple as someone didn't screw the light bulb all the way into the socket. It could be too large of a bulb wattage was used, and it could be a bad connection.

Lighting in your home is important for convenience and safety. Do you know how to determine incandescent light bulb problems?

Photo: Timothy Thiele

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