One of the more frustrating things as a homeowner is an electrical problem that you can’t figure out. They can be particularly infuriating and difficult to diagnose. A ceiling fan light is one of the things that commonly has issues with many different causes and solutions.

Your ceiling fan light can come on and then go off for a number of reasons. Check the bulb contacts to make sure they’re snug and see that you have the correct bulb in there. If it is remote controlled, check for any other remotes that may be interfering with it. 

There are a few other solutions to this problem that could help as well. In this article, we will cover many of them and offer up some safety and prevention tips.

Safety Tips

Whenever you are dealing with household-grade electricity, it is important that you stay safe. Household power is incredibly dangerous and without the proper safety measures in place, you could seriously injure yourself. It is always better to err on the side of caution.

One safety measure you can take is to wear protective gloves. Thick gardening gloves will work just fine for this. By having a barrier between yourself and any electrical currents, you can prevent any accidental contact.

Another safety measure you can take is turning off power to the ceiling fan light. You can do this either by turning off the light switch it is connected to or turning it off inside the breaker box. Either one will work to make sure that the current is not flowing through the light housing.

What Causes a Ceiling Fan Light to Turn Off?

Dirty or Bent Bulb Contacts

The housing that the light bulb screws into isn’t usually made of the most solid material. It can expand or contract with heat or it can get dirty. When either of these things happen, the housing stops making contact with the bulb when it heats up.

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Radio Interference

If your ceiling fan light is remote controlled, it could be experiencing interference from other remotes in the house. Often, factory remotes are set to similar frequencies. These similar frequencies can interfere with one another and turn off the light.

Mismatched Wattage

If the bulb you have in there is not the correct wattage, it could cause all kinds of problems. When a bulb lets in too much power for the filament to handle, it can easily overheat and turn off.

Multiple Switches

Depending on your house, certain lights might be controlled by multiple switches. These may or may not be in the room the light is in. All homes are different and have their own reasoning for their wiring.

Malfunctioning Circuit Breaker

The circuit breaker is a failsafe for the electricity in your house. If any power malfunction happens, it is designed to cut off the electricity in that area. If it is malfunctioning, it could be turning the ceiling fan light on and off.

How Can I Fix My Ceiling Fan Light?

Clean and Bend the Contacts – You can bend the housing slightly inward to ensure a tighter contact. You can also get a dry cloth and clean inside the housing to get rid of any unwanted dirt. Make sure you have turned off the power to the light before you do this.

Change Your Remote Frequencies – Most remote control frequencies can be changed if there is interference. This process is sometimes done by opening up the back and flipping a few switches. Check with your remote’s manufacturer for how to do this correctly.

Change the Bulb – There will usually be a sticker on the inside of the lightbulb housing. This will tell you what wattage lightbulb you should be using. Change the bulb to the recommended wattage to ensure that you don’t have any problems in the future.

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Check For Other Light Switches – No matter how long you have lived somewhere, houses can still be full of surprises. Go around your home and flip light switches to see if any turn the ceiling fan light off. The culprit could be someone else in the house flipping that switch.

Check Your Breaker Box – Your circuit breaker box could be the key to many electrical issues. Take a look at it to make sure that it is in top working order. Any issues there could easily be spreading to the rest of the house.

How Can I Prevent My Ceiling Fan Light Turning Off?

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of the cure. This is especially true if you are a homeowner. By going through your house and doing regular maintenance, you can prevent all kinds of problems. Electrical issues are no different.

One thing you can do is make the switch to energy-efficient light bulbs. Not only are these good for the environment, but they also last longer and are easier on electrical components. Their slow warm-up adds longevity to switches and wires.

You can also make sure to turn off any lights when you are not directly using them. This will prevent wear and tear on the bulbs as well as the entire electrical system. Anything helps when you are trying to save power.

What Should I Do If My Ceiling Fan Light Won’t Turn On At All?

You may go through all of the above steps and still not get anywhere. If your ceiling fan light won’t turn on at all, you could be looking at bigger issues. This might mean that you have a problem within the fan and fixture itself.

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At this point, your best option is to either call an electrician or replace the entire fan fixture. It might be good to get a second opinion before starting any replacements. It never hurts to make sure before spending a big chunk of money.

How Much Does it Cost to Fix My Ceiling Fan Light?

The cost of fixing your ceiling fan light will vary depending on the cause of the problem. This is always one of the problems with electrical issues. They are difficult to diagnose and even more difficult to estimate their cost.

If you only need to clean the fixture housing, then this fix is free. Of course, if you end up needing to replace the entire fan and fixture, it could cost up to $1,200. It’s all going to depend on the diagnosis.

Related Questions

Are Flickering Lights Dangerous?

In general, lights that turn on and off aren’t necessarily dangerous. However, they can greatly reduce the life of appliances and fixtures due to the fluctuation in power. The root cause of the flickering could also possibly be dangerous so it is important to get it checked.

How Long Do Ceiling Fans Last? 

If properly cared for, ceiling fans and light fixtures can last up to ten years. If you do regular cleanings of the housings and blades, you can avoid large buildup. This will extend the life significantly.

Can a Light Overheat? 

If a lightbulb is not correctly matched to the fixture it is screwed into, it can generate excess heat. Depending on the mismatch, this heat can be slow to build or fast. This is why it’s so important to make sure you have the proper bulbs in all of your light fixtures.