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What are the Dangers of Overlamping in Your Home?

lighting upgrades for your home
lighting upgrades for your home

What is overlamping? Overlamping is when you install a light bulb with higher wattage than what is recommended for the light fixture. We have all been here before, a light bulb burns out, so we go to the closet and grab the closest available light bulb.

Other times, we only purchase 100-watt bulbs, so we can see clearly in our home. But we make these decisions with little or no thought for the wattage of the light fixture. Electrical requirements for home appliances and devices can be complicated and challenging to follow, so Assurance Electrical Services wants to educate Prescott homeowners on the dangers of overlamping in terms everyone can understand.

The Dangers of Overlamping

So you put a brighter bulb in your lamp, what is the worst that could happen? The insulation on light fixtures is created with temperature limits. If your light bulb is 100-watts and your lamp is rated for 60-watts, the additional heat from the hotter bulb can overheat and melt the socket and wiring insulation. This in turn can create an electrical arc which is responsible for starting house fires. At the very least, you risk damaging your light fixture beyond repair.

How to Prevent It

Check your light fixtures to ensure they are at or below the rated wattage. The wattage recommendation is typically located on the fixture’s wire jacket. You should also see the letters “NMB” or “NM”. “NMB” means the fixture can withstand temperatures up to 194 degrees which is the highest possible rating. Finding the wattage rating on older fixtures may be more difficult than checking the wire jacket.

Overlamping poses a severe risk for your home and family, and it should be dealt with quickly. If you have questions about overlamping or would like to have the fixtures in your Prescott home checked by a professional, call Assurance Electrical Services at 928-713-2177.

Founder, CEO at Assurance Electrical Services | (928) 713-2177 | jeff@assuranceelectricalaz.com | Website | + posts

Jeff Brandlin is the founder of Assurance Electrical Services, LLC. He started in the electrical industry when he was 21 and had worked in several electrical firms before founding Assurance Electrical. Jeff is dedicated to providing the best quality service to his clients and always puts their needs first. Outside work, Jeff enjoys spending time with his wife and children.

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