Troubleshooting a Built-in Light Fixture Switch

Most light fixtures that you have in your home are operated using a light fixture switch installed in a wall. However, there are also some chandelier and hanging-type fixtures that come with built-in switches. There are two ways in which these built-in light switches are installed. One way is the conventional wiring method, in which the built-in switch is connected to a wall switch; the other is one in which the power is connected directly to the built-in switch in the light. In the first kind of switches, if the wall switch is switched off, the built-in switch will not able to pass electricity. This can often pose a problem. For this reason, most people allow the power to be directly controlled by the built-in switches.

When it comes to home maintenance, light fixtures are usually most ignored. In fact, even if we do envisage a problem with the bulb or the lamp itself, we never check the switch. However, it has been seen that most common electrical problems are more often because of a faulty switch and not because the bulb burned itself out. Here is a list of common problems that can occur with built-in light fixture switches. Keep in mind that when working with light switches always switch off the mains and pull out the plugs before attempting repairs. Also, make sure to take all the necessary safety precautions to prevent any mishaps or accidents.

Problem 1: Light Bulb is not Switching On

A lot of times, the problem may not be with the fixture, but the bulb itself. When troubleshooting any lighting fixtures, the first step is always to check the bulb first. If the bulb has burnt out, replace it. You can try fitting in another bulb to see if the fixture is working. Check to see if the bulb is fitted tightly in. Also check the socket tab in the center of the socket. If it is not making contact, pull it upwards to improve the contact.

Problem 2:  Light Bulb is Flickering

If there is a crackling sound from the fixture, it means that the contacts of the switch are getting bad. Switch off the power to the circuit and loosen up the built-in switch. Make sure that the socket of the fixture is tight and the connections of the switch are fixed well. Also check the breaker panel to make sure that the light and the panel connections are connected well together. 

Problem 3: Switch Doesn’t Seem to Work

Switch off the power of the circuit. Use a screw driver to loosen the switch. Pull out the wires and connect them to an ohmmeter to check if the wires have not gone bad. Once the ohmmeter is connected, turn the power on again and toggle the switch. Check for any changes in the values of the ohmmeter. If there are no changes, you may have to replace the switch as it may be broken or damaged.

Problem4: Crackling Noise from the Socket

Check the wires to the socket. Remove the blank cover from the wall switch box and check for the presence of any burnt or loose wires. If the wires are damaged, replace them with new wires.