home improvement


Question by  elsewhen (627)

What happens if i use higher wattage bulb than the max listed on a lamp?

does it damage the lamp, or is it just an issue with heat?


Answer by  CarolynOsborne (2804)

Having been there and done that, I can tell you that it may melt the parts of your lamp. Also you are running the risk of having an electrical fire if the insulation between wires melts and the lamp shorts out. One reason I like compact fluorescents is because their wattage is so low this is not a risk.


Answer by  calcutta (168)

you should never exceed the max listed, unless you are using a CFL (compact fluorescent) bulb. the number of watts on the packaging of CFL bulbs is usually the incandescent-equivalent, not the actual wattage. Look for the small print to find out the actual wattage on this bulb type.


Answer by  elaine (450)

You can start a fire in the fixture if you exceed the Underwriters' recommendation. Naturally, the longer you have it turned on, the greater your chances for an event. So the sub question about damage (first) and heat (second) can be answered by saying the one produces the other; in other words, you get both.


Answer by  Gabriel (2146)

The issue of the heat is what would cause damage to the lamp. If the bulb you put in is significantly larger than the lamp is designed for, it will draw more current than the wiring may be rated for. In theory, that could lead to melted wires, burnt lampshades, and potentially fires. Stick with the lamps rating.

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