Comments: My Ghost is Messing with Me

Logically, it seems you have a ghost.


Seriously, my old house had strange happenin's quite often... bulbs going out was definitely one of them.

I remember the first time it happened... I was checking out the dirt basement on the day I moved in, and when I got to the middle of the room, both lightbulbs gave an audible pop, and went out. Switch still on, I made for the stairs at the fastest speed manageable.

'Course, it could have been the wiring, too. But seemed to happen at the most opportune times.

posted by That 1 Guy on September 23, 2007 01:11 AM

Sadly, your light bulb issue may be voltage related... get somebody with a good Digital Multimeter (preferably recently calibrated) to check your residence. Nominal is 120 VAC (RMS) and your local utility may be able to tell you what they consider "acceptable". If your residence is outside their "acceptable" voltage limits, they might make modifications at no cost, if not, you are on your own.

Science-wise, bulbs last a lot longer when the voltage is "too low", if it is "too high", there is excessive heat that wreaks havoc on the internals, usually culminating in the dreaded "pop" as you flip the switch on. My recollection is a 10% increase in voltage reduces bulb life to less than half. Bulbs designed for higher input voltage are available, at a premium, but may be worthwhile if it reduces your aggravation.

Best of luck!

posted by Mike the EE on September 24, 2007 11:40 AM

Wow...see now, I don't know which way to go with this one, or which avenue I even prefer... :D But thanks for the professional opinion, Mike. I love the world of free advice.

posted by Key on September 26, 2007 05:50 PM

... damn, Mike... you buzzkill, you..... I like T1G's story better....

posted by Eric on September 27, 2007 07:26 PM