DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum > DIY Home Improvement > Electrical and Wiring > lightbulb goes pop




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Old 12-19-2008, 12:45 PM  
Will1987
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Default lightbulb goes pop

This is a totally different issue than the previous one (that caused all the ruckus but appears to have ended up ok thanks to you guys' decent attitudes - I was impressed). A friend of mine has a friend who's lightbulb goes pop and burns out two days after putting it into the socket. I just heard about this over the phone but it seems to me this by ordinary logic would be caused by too much current flowing through the filament, burning it out in a short time. Too much current means too much amperage of course. Thing is - why would an ordinary lightbulb in a house with 120 volts and 15 and 20 amp circuits have this problem? I guess the light (i.e. wattage of the outlet itself) could be high specially high wattage and he's putting bulbs in that are too low in wattage?
Can anybody shed any light on this?

Will



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Old 12-19-2008, 03:23 PM  
travelover
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The problem is too much voltage. This can be caused by a poor ground within the house wiring or fuse box.. Someone will be along soon to explain ...



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Old 12-19-2008, 08:39 PM  
loki791
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Neither wattage or wiring is the problem -- the bulbs are simply being screwed in too tightly.

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Old 12-20-2008, 12:09 AM  
Will1987
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hmmmm cryptic responses. how are bulbs screwed in too tightly a problem, or are you just messing with me hehehe? also what was that about voltage? bad ground allows too much voltage because excess has no outlet? The amplitude of the ac voltage wave goes too high and low? maybe poltergeists should be considered as well?

Will

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Old 12-20-2008, 12:41 PM  
travelover
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Poltergeists may be a good guess.

Voltage is electrical potential between two points. Normally a house has three wires supplying power, black, red and white. Between the black and white wire, voltage is about 110 v. Between the red and white wire it is also about 110 v. Between the red and black wires it is about 220 v. Half the 110v circuits in your house are powered off the black wire and half from the red wire.

If you have a bad connection on the white wire and there is a return path for a circuit on the black wire side back through the red wire side, you can get upwards of 220v in a 110v circuit. This happens when circuits share a common box that are powered from both the red and black wires.

Confused yet? Check the voltage in the socket and see if it is 110v. Also look for signs of arcing on the center terminal where the bulb screws in..

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Old 12-21-2008, 03:16 PM  
triple D
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Default 118-122 is nominal for house.

This is why appliances and electronics speak of 120 and 240 volts. The most common cause of your scenario I have found in my experience has been a bad neutral. Check the white wires in the fixture. And also in the switch, if there are white wires nutted together behind switch check these too. Alot of bulbs these days are manufactured at 130volts, this is to lengthen their life span, and make them more tolerant to minor surges. Good luck, and let us know what you find....



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