New overhead fixtures immediately burn out bulb


Old 12-08-04, 05:40 PM
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New overhead fixtures immediately burn out bulb

I'm finally replacing two overhead 110V lighting fixtures connected to a single switch. Both have 2 bulbs in a fixture. I replaced both and now one bulb in one fixture immediately blows as soon as I turn on the switch. The breaker is OK. The other fixture doesn't work at all. I am confused about the wiring since I simply connected the two black leads per fixture to the black wires in the socket and the two white leads per fixture to the white wires as they were before. Its been awhile since I used them but I thought they worked OK before. Any suggestions ? Thanks
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Old 12-08-04, 05:51 PM
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So the bulb burns out but the breaker does not trip? If you try the bulb in a different lamp, you can confirm that it is good before you put it in but bad after you take it out.

You said that one bulb in one fixture blows. You also said that the other fixture does not work at all. But what about the second bulb in the fixture where the other bulb blows?
Old 12-08-04, 09:55 PM
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two bulbs burn out - one in each fixture

Thanks. One bulb in each fixture blows. The filament for each bulb is broken while the other bulb is OK and the breaker is not tripped. If I put in two new bulbs the same thing happens again - two bulbs blow immediately - one in each fixture. Seems like its getting too much current. For each fixture I have connected - black to black to the house source black and same for white ? Unfortunately the directions only show one light bulb per fixture and one black wire connected to the source black; and one white wire connected to the source white. ???
Old 12-08-04, 10:55 PM
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You say there are two wires for each socket in the fixture, by chance are you connecting the sockets in series instead of parallel? By this I mean are you connecting house black to one of the blacks, then connecting the white to the next socket black and then connecting the last white to the white of the house white? If so, that would be your problem.


Old 12-09-04, 05:20 AM
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savant, wiring the lights in series would cause a lower voltage (about 60 volts, assuming same wattage bulbs, not a higher voltage.
Old 12-09-04, 05:33 AM
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If you have 120V bulbs on a 120V circuit, then there is no way that the bulbs could be getting too much current.

But bulbs blowing _instantly_ is a pretty strong clue that the bulb _is_ getting too much current.

What sort of bulbs do you have? What shape? Are there any markings on them or a rating on the box that they came in? What kind of base do they have?

Old 12-09-04, 08:05 AM
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There are some bulbs made for outdoor lighting that look like a "regular" bulb but are 12 volt or 24 volt rated. Also, there are DC bulbs for boats and RV. All of these are somewhat difficult to find, so it is a real stretch to think you may have a batch of these, but it is something to check.
Old 12-09-04, 09:24 AM
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The only way a bulb could blow instantly is if you are applying to many volts. Tell us how this circuit is wired. Do you need to turn off one or two breakers to kill all the power? This could be a multiwire circuit and you have somehow connected it to put 240 volts on the lights.
Old 12-09-04, 10:28 AM
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That's kinda what I was thinking Joed. But he said he only had two wires in each fixture box.
Old 12-09-04, 10:48 AM
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I'm leaning toward 240V being applied to the fixture. That's unsafe to begin with, but it's the only possible explanation I can think of. Perhaps this is a multiwire circuit wired very, very wrong....
Old 12-09-04, 11:39 AM
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I thought it might be something easy to correct but probably not. Even if I measured something more than 110V with a tester I don't want to try to fix it. Will call a pro and let you know what the problem was. Thanks for all the help!
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