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Thread: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

  1. #1
    Flashaholic Frijid's Avatar
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    Default Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    So I was browsing around a local hardware store today talking to a guy I know who works there,when a guy came in claiming he needed a new light fixture. Being light related, I politely butted in on the conversation. His old one was one with a glass globe around it. He claimed that his wife ruined the whole fixture by screwing in a lightbulb to tight. He said that he didn't know that she screwed it in to tight, until 3 to 4 weeks later it stopped working. He said that when he went to change it, that's when he noticed at how tight it was, and that's what caused it to have a short life. He also said he was lucky that it didn't start a fire being in tight. He said that he replaced the bulb himself "the right way" and lo and behold it was dead again in a short time. His belief now was that the whole fixture is ruined because of his wife screwing the first bulb in too tight and that the trend will continue until the whole thing is changed. By chance, he brought a burnt out bulb with him to make sure it fit good in the new globe. I asked to see the bulb and I noticed that it said plain as day "not for use in enclosed or recesed fixtures." I pointed this out to him as being the likely culprit, but he wasn't having none of it. So I guess my question is, is there any truth about fire hazards from bulbs being screwed in to tight? I still subscribe to the theory that he's putting the led bulb in a globe, when it says not too. But is there any truth in it? The only thing I knew to watch out for in bulbs was like not putting a 100 watt bulb in a fixture only rated for 60 watt max, but that was in the incadenscent and halogen bulb days. I have seen instances of a fixture stop working from a screwed in bulb to tight that bent the tab in the middle and required it to be bent back in shape.

    I'm tempted to believe that the guys gonna have the same problem again, and start blaming the wiring going to the fixture next lol.
    Last edited by Frijid; 04-09-2019 at 01:09 PM.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    Simple answer would be no. Complex answer would probably be the same, except checked the bottom of the bulb to see that the base is not pushed in. I doubt it is. Your first thoughts are likely right.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    agree with poster above, if you screw a bulb too tight, 3 things can happen, 1 it will work just fine, 2 it will short contacts and sparks will fly right away, tripping your circuit barker, or the light wont come on at all, you can't damage entire fixture by screwing the light too tight. unless you short and wires melt insulation, but it comes with smoke and strong burning smell. seems like op is correct led bulbs in enclosed spaces burn out fast, i had it happen, until i replaced entire fixture.

    did the guy bought the fixture in that store? maybe he wants to return it, or he realized that led bulbs will not work right in enclosed space, and wants the store to replace it for free,

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    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    Quote Originally Posted by Frijid View Post
    He claimed that his wife ruined the whole fixture by screwing in a lightbulb to tight.
    I hesitate to think about how he must treat that poor woman if hebelieves she doesn't even know how to screw in a lightbulb.

    I'm with the "enclosed" part, not the "too tight" part, unless heat made something swell up and that's what made the bulb hard to remove.

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    Flashaholic Frijid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    Quote Originally Posted by alpg88 View Post

    did the guy bought the fixture in that store? maybe he wants to return it, or he realized that led bulbs will not work right in enclosed space, and wants the store to replace it for free,
    Not sure where the original one was from. All he had with him was an old bulb to check clearance. Like an a19 vs a21 issue. He picked out one and paid for it and left. Not sure if he was gonna install it himself if he had any background in electric or not, but if he did you'd think he'd be smart enough to know that tightening a bulb to tight isn't gonna start a fire or permanently damage a fixture. But who knows, I had a guy in an auto parts store that's supposed to be the "head" guy try to argue me that Hyundai and Honda was the same company. Hyandaui is what it's known in Japan (it's actually a Korean company) and that honda is what the cars are known in America lol
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    Flashaholic Frijid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    LOL he probably thinks that she could destroy a steel anvil in a sandbox.

    I'm still beting it's the "enclosed" rating that killed it. They can be confusing sometimes because I've seen some say not for use in totally enclosed fixtures, and it made me question about partially enclosed fixtures. And I've still got several boxes of Sylvania bulbs that make no mention if you can or can't. But it's not hard to find ones that say you can use them in enclosed fixtures.
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    Flashaholic Frijid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    So as a test I screwed in an led bulb into a cheap table top lampshade light I bought a few years ago. I screwed it in extremely tight. So tight that it felt like something would break. I turned it on and left it on while I was in the living room, which is pretty much where I stay. It was on for over 8 hours straight with no problem
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    *Flashaholic* PhotonWrangler's Avatar
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    Default Re: Led lightbulb causing fire/short life from being screwed in to tight?

    The "not rated for enclosed fixtures" warning is real. Cree is now offering some 60w and 75w equivalents that are rated for fully enclosed fixtures. This would be a good fit for him, although it's obviously too late in this case, and even if it wasn't, he probably would've refused to try them anyway.

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