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Why light bulbs burn out too fast

Why light bulbs burn out too fast

Published: November 17, 2016 Last Updated: March 03, 2022

You could be forgiven for thinking the claim that CFL bulbs last on average 8000 hours is total baloney if your home is suffering from the frustrating effects of premature bulb blowout. Fortunately for you, there could be a simple and easily fixed reason your bulbs are falling way short of the average.

Too hot

Light fittings come in all shapes and sizes. Most fittings are designed to add style to your home and direct the light in a certain way but some, like recessed or covered fixtures, can sometimes cause the bulb to overheat, significantly shortening its lifespan.

To avoid this issue ensure the bulb is not too large or too high wattage for the light fitting. If the fittings are downlights or recessed lights, make sure the ceiling insulation is not laying over or packed too closely around the downlight. Overheating downlights is a very serious issue that leads to many house fires each year.

Safety note: switch off the mains' power before doing any work in the ceiling space. More information on this important home safety task - Stay safer up there, switch off down here.


Excess movement or vibration can quickly wear the bulb filament, reducing its useful life. Is the light fitting that goes through the most bulbs over a frequently slammed back door, under timber stairs or next to a basketball hoop? Vibration could be the issue.

Homes located on a busy road especially one with constant truck traffic, or close to the train line can suffer from recurring bulbs loss as well.

This can also be a problem on ceiling fans with an integrated light fitting if the fan is not balanced correctly.

Our electrical team advises installing shock-resistant bulbs specially designed for use in areas with frequent vibration.

Too much power

Throughout Australia electricity is delivered to our homes at around 240 volts. A little bit more or a little bit less is not really a problem for most appliances or electrical equipment, however, light bulbs don't cope with more power very well, it tends to make them blow out sooner than they should.

If any of the bulbs in your home are blowing out earlier than they should you may have an issue with too much power. Call in a licenced electrician to check the strength of your home power supply.

Dodgy wiring or fittings

Issues stemming from poor quality light fittings or slack installation can blow bulb after bulb. If you suspect this to be the cause of the bulb carnage in your home give your electrician a call straight away, faulty wiring can be very dangerous.

Faulty connections

The point where the light bulb connects with the fitting often gets worn and dirty over time resulting in flickering lights or constantly failing bulbs.

Bulb quality

Hoping to save a few bucks by buying cheap bulbs? Unfortunately, over time, it may end up costing you more rather than less. The cheaper bulbs often are that way because they have low-quality components. These bulbs will not last as long as well made bulbs.

Still having issues with your home lighting? Our experienced electrical team can help, give us a call on 1300 762 260 or complete a booking request today.

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