Home Improvement--General/changing halogen bulb


Ceiling light fixture
Ceiling light fixture  

Dumb question: I moved into a new house -- recently flipped with all new lighting -- and the hallway has these halogen spotlights (both a single sconce-type and the 3-bulb ceiling light in the picture), and I can't for the life of me figure out how to replace burned out bulbs. The ends don't screw off like similar models that I've found online (metal "shade" is all one piece). I can't rotate the glass inside the shades. I can't really get my finger in there to pull them out. The shades don't seem to unscrew from the fixture. Help! 3 out of 4 bulbs burned out. I'll be in the dark soon. Thanks.

Hi, Christine.

Thank you for sending a picture! It looks like there's a spring clip on the inside of the fixture that holds the lamp in place. I recognize the lamps. You're right, they don't have a screw base, but what we call a bayonet base. Once the clip that holds the lamp is moved, the lamp should come out. I used to have a desk lamp that was very similar. It was a royal pain to remove the lamp. It required pinching the spring clip together and pulling it out. Really bad design!

Before you remove the lamp, make sure that the lights have been turned off. Halogen lamps can get very hot quickly when they're turned on. If there's not a protective glass front, don't touch the bulb with your bare hands. The oil from your fingers will make the lamp burn out very quickly. These lamps don't last very long, and they can be expensive. Before replacing the lamps, get a price for one replacement. You may want to purchase a new fixture that has LED lamps. LEDs are much more energy efficient, provide excellent light quality, and last at least 25,000 hours a full brightness.

Good luck getting the lamps out, and replacing them!

Warm Regards,

Diane Plesset, CMKBD, C.A.P.S., NCIDQ
D. P. Design  

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Diane Plesset


I will answer questions about anything to do with bathroom remodeling: design considerations, safety, function, materials (cabinets, countertops, plumbing fixtures and fittings, lighting/switching, heating and ventilation, tile, stone, concrete, tub and shower enclosures, flooring, etc.), saving water, trends, ROI, and appearance.


25+ years as a bath-kitchen design specialist, hundreds of completed bathroom projects (all styles, all investment ranges). Author of "THE Survival Guide: Home Remodeling," co-host of a home improvement program on a local radio station for over three years. Currently hosting "Today's Home" on Lifestyle WebRadio every Sunday afternoon (http://www.todays-home.com).

NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association), NAHB (National Association of Home Builders), PRO (Portland Remodelers' Organization), IDPC (Interior Design Protection Council).

"THE Survival Guide: Home Remodeling" (my book, published in 2003), Designers' Illustrated Magazine, Gentry Magazine, Kitchen-Bath Business Magazine, Kitchen-Bath Design News Magazine,Interior Coordinator Magazine (Japan); San Jose Mercury News, San Mateo Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Statesman Journal, Portland Tribune, Oregonian.

Multiple degrees: Bathroom Design, Residential Interior Design, Kitchen Design, and Lighting Design. Regularly attend classes and seminars to maintain current knowledge about codes, trends, sustainability, new products, etc.

Awards and Honors
Awards: Henry Adams Designer of the Year, CoTY, Master Design, Best of the Best, Chrysalis, Excellence (best home in its category), and NABE (best how-to book, 2003). "THE Survival Guide: Home Remodeling" received #1 listing in the City of Chicago publication, "Hiring The Pros".

Past/Present Clients
To see photos of completed projects, visit my website: http://www.dp-design.com/portfolio

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