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Why Are Your Lightbulbs Flickering?

Why Are Your Lightbulbs Flickering? - Westridge Electric - Electricians in Calgary

Erratic lights may bring to mind climactic scenes in poorly-made horror movies, but the reason it’s happening in your home is probably way less dramatic. In fact, certain types of lights are naturally more prone to flickering. Fluorescents and LEDs are fairly big culprits.

With these bulbs, occasional fluctuations in brightness are nothing to worry about. But what happens when the flickering is constant, or you don’t even have those types of bulbs? Here are the three most common reasons you might find your lights going a little haywire.


Loose Bulb

Sometimes the solution is simple, the bulb wasn’t screwed in properly. This can be the case with both exposed and recessed lights, so be sure to check this before declaring a national emergency. When inspecting the bulbs, ensure to turn off the light and use a heavy duty glove to touch the bulb to avoid burning yourself. Once you’ve adjusted, flick the switch back on and see how the light reacts. Most of the time, the flickering will have stopped.


Voltage Fluctuation

If your lights are flickering when you turn on an appliance, this could be the fault of too much voltage fluctuation. Lights that dim unexpectedly or burn out more often than seems normal are also a symptom of this problem. Some fluctuation is normal, but too much can cause a host of problems. Use a voltmeter to check the voltage in your home. Anything above 115-125 volts signals an issue. If that is the case, call in a certified electrician to inspect your system and see what can be done. In some cases, you merely need to purchase higher voltage bulbs.


Loose Electrical Wiring

While you can screw in a bulb or take a voltmeter reading on your own, a loose wiring problem should always be left to the professionals. If you’ve tested the above options and nothing seems to work, it’s time to check the fixture. Loose or insecure wiring is the main cause of house fires, so this is not something you want to put off for any length of time. An electrician will be able to assess the state of your wiring and let you know exactly what needs to be done to fix it.


A flickering light isn’t always an ominous sign, but it definitely isn’t one you should ignore. Constant fluctuations should be examined by a trained Calgary electrician. Call the experts at Westridge Electric today!