I thought my bathroom fluorescent light bulbs had simply burned out one day. We purchased new bulbs, but it was the same. I thought it was a bad set of bulbs, so we bought two more, but the same thing happened.
You can see that the electricity is getting in there, the bulbs just don't want to light up. Is there something wrong with my fixture (even though the juice is obviously getting in there) or is there something I can do to clean the connectors?
By Allison from Honolulu, HI
There are basically 5 things that can go wrong: power, lamps, sockets, ballast, and starter. I don't know how you tell that power is getting there, but that obviously that isn't it. You replaced the lamps twice so that isn't it. Assuming the lamps are seating well in the sockets when you put them in that shouldn't be it.
So that leaves the starter, not all fixtures have them, but if yours does it looks like a miniature tin can and twists into a socket. They are usually available at hardware stores for under $5, but make sure you get the correct replacement, there are several different types for different types of lamps.
The last thing would be the ballast. It is fairly easy to replace if you have some electrical skills and can be bought at some hardware stores and most lighting stores. For a small type fixture it should cost under $15. (04/10/2010)
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