How To Fix a Lamp Socket

Over time, most standing lamps tend to have certain parts wear out faster than others. The most common of these parts to wear out is the lamp socket. It is also a common place for damage to occur because it functions as the receptacle for the light bulb. If you know how to fix a lamp socket, then you'll be able to repair your lamp instead of needing to replace it. The most common repair for a lamp socket is to remove a broken light bulb base that is still within the socket. Make sure there isn't any power to the lamp by unplugging it first. Then take a large potato, cut it in half, and place one of the halves over the broken light bulb. Turn until the entire lamp socket is clear.


Do You Need to Replace the Socket Itself?

Before deciding to replace the entire lamp socket, check first to see if there is any damage to the cord of the lamp. If there is damage, then you may need to replace the cord instead of the lamp socket. If the cord looks good and there's no other explanation as to why a lamp is failing to work, then it is probably the socket. You'll need to remove the harp of the lamp in order to access the socket shell. Look closely and you'll find a place that tells you to press down on a specific spot. Push firmly down there and the lamp socket will pull apart. The socket shell is on the outside and then you'll find a layer of insulation, which is usually cardboard. These come off, leaving the aluminum socket and plastic switch. You'll now need to remove the cord from the socket.

Now You're Ready To Replace the Socket

With the new lamp socket, you simply wire up the lamp to it as you found the old socket connected. You may need to strip out up to ½ inch of the power cord to facilitate the wiring. Most lamps also have an underwriter's knot that helps to keep the socket base in place. Make sure that the screws that connect the wires to the socket are tight and the wiring connection is firm. Then you're ready to replace the insulation and the outer shell of the socket. Your final step is to connect the socket back to the lamp, which is usually just a simple attachment. Plug the lamp back in and the socket should be functional. If it is not, double check the wiring connections from your repair and look at other options, such as replacing the cord of the lamp, even if there is not any noticeable damage to see. Knowing how to fix a lamp socket will help you be able to get more life out of every lamp that you own. With basic tools required, all it takes is a few minutes to get this job done.

Posted on Jan 22, 2015


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