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#26879 - 06/25/03 12:05 PM Exploding Lightbulbs?
ALWIRE Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/02/03
Posts: 6
Loc: Aurora, CO, USA
There are two outside fixtures and weather does not seem to be a factor, but the lightbulbs blowout (literally-explode into bits) every two weeks or so. Any ideas on how to troubleshoot this one? Possible causes? Thanks
Also, does anyone know of a way to test breakers while they're in the panel?
Thanks again.

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#26880 - 06/26/03 03:54 AM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
maintenanceguy Offline

Registered: 12/02/01
Posts: 303
Loc: Southern NJ, USA
I'd suspect water, even if it's slowly dripping from sonewhere days after the rain.

It would take a really high voltage surge (I mean big) to break a filament with enough force to shatter the glass bulb.

Cool water on a smokin' hot bulb will shatter the glass.

#26881 - 06/26/03 07:47 AM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
electech Offline

Registered: 02/18/02
Posts: 113
Loc: Northern Il
Vandalism? Maybe a kid with a BB gun or an unfriendly neighbor or one who doesn't like the light shinning in his window?

#26882 - 06/26/03 09:24 AM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
Jim M Offline

Registered: 08/10/01
Posts: 453
Loc: Chestertown, MD, USA
Are these bulbs a halogen bulb? The packaging will warn that oils from fingers will cause hot spots on the glass and can lead to explosion.

#26883 - 06/26/03 10:07 AM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
ALWIRE Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/02/03
Posts: 6
Loc: Aurora, CO, USA
Thanks for the ideas, here's what we know:
1) It's not vandalism.
2) The lady has been in the home 12 years and this has consistently occured.
3) the bulbs are not halogens or over-sized.
4) two different lights (either side of garage) at about the same time.
Very puzzling? But thanks for the suggestions.

#26884 - 06/26/03 10:20 AM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
steve66 Offline

Registered: 03/13/03
Posts: 25
Probably rain getting in. My garage light does the same thing. Since its on the outside, by the time someone notices the light is out, the rain may be gone. And they may not be on during one rain, so the bulb may not burst every time it rains. So, I'll bet weather is a factor even though it may not seem that way. Drop by after a good rain and look for a puddle of water in the bottom of the broken bulb.


#26885 - 06/26/03 12:32 PM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
Bjarney Offline

Registered: 04/10/02
Posts: 2561
Loc: West-Southern Inner-Northeast ...
In-place testing of molded-case circuit breakers without a current-injection set is a pain, but not impossible. If you can load it to 300% of rated {like 60 amps on a 20-amp breaker}, then 30-amp-or-less, 120- or 240-volt breakers should trip in no more than 50 seconds.

After lamp replacement, you might try cleaning the bulb with methyl alcohol and a clean rag to rule out contamination problems.

#26886 - 06/26/03 01:49 PM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
zapped208 Offline

Registered: 02/18/03
Posts: 201
Loc: Somewhere in USA
ALWIRE,- Need more info, like (1) what type of lamp: flood, A19 , sodium ,or Mh.(2) What type of luminare. (3) Are they on the same sw and or circuit. There are many possibilities.
Shoot first, apologize later.....maybe

#26887 - 06/26/03 04:01 PM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
ALWIRE Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/02/03
Posts: 6
Loc: Aurora, CO, USA
they are two regular outdoor incandescent fixtures on the front face of the garage, on the same switch (with another porch light too, which doesn't experience the same blowouts). They are all on the same circuit and we pulled all the fixtures and every outlet and switch and found all solid connections?????

#26888 - 06/26/03 08:35 PM Re: Exploding Lightbulbs?
frenchelectrican Offline


Registered: 02/06/03
Posts: 938
Loc: Wi/ Paris France { France for ...
did you think poissbity of voltage surge going thru from time to time ??? you sholud get the chart recorder to track the voltage surge and dip to see what is the curpit . my area the curpet was power company captitor switching you can noticed for short time usely on sheduled timmming but for your area if that possibity that poco line have some hevey user along the line ?? if so see what they suggest it and did you try to use rough service bulbs or 130 volts bulbs they inted to handle some surge pretty well that is one of few possibty

merci marc
Pas de problme,il marche n'est-ce pas?"(No problem, it works doesn't it?)

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