Lightbulb Whisperer: Lights Can Reveal Problems Within Your Electrical System

30 November 2015
 Categories: , Blog


You may not think that lights do much more than light up your home, but those light bulbs might be speaking volumes about your home's electrical system. This is a simple guide that might enlighten you about your home's electrical system.

The On and Off Game

Have you noticed that your bulbs work well some of the time but cut off every now and then? This is usually referred to as recessed light phenomenon. The bulb may be shutting off on its own to prevent overheating or a burst. This is likely occurring because you purchased a bulb that did not belong to the port, in which case you simply must replace the bulb.

It could also be that your home is too hot or that the bulb is situated too close to your insulated ceiling. You can talk to your electrician to get to the bottom of this.

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Bulb

You might have noticed that your light bulbs flicker erratically, which could be indicating a bad connection in your circuit system. This might even be rooted in your main wire if you see these flickering lights throughout your whole home. A bad connection just means that your wiring is bad, and the following are other signs that may further cement this possibility:

  • Look at the outlets to see if they are charred or buzzing. You might even see some discoloration. Check light switches for the same signs, too.
  • There might be frequent shocking when you switch the lights on. This might happen when you plug or unplug an appliance or light.
  • You might notice a burnt electrical smell near your outlets.

Talk to your electrician as soon as you notice any of the aforementioned signs, so that he or she can help you get to the bottom of your problem.

Two-Faced Light-bulbs

Another phenomenon that you might be experiencing is that some of your bulbs have a strong consistent burn, while others are hardly emitting any light. This may be due to a bad neutral, which could be damaging to some of your appliances. You might notice the following associated symptoms:

  • Popped light-bulb
  • Inexplicably dead appliances
  • Appliances working incorrectly, like a microwave that won't heat up properly

Talk to an electrician such as SDS Electric as soon as you notice any of these issues, as you might need a rewiring job. But, as you can see, your lights may help reveal problems within your electrical system.