How to Fix a Lamp That Won’t Turn on

Have you ever tried turning on a lamp that wouldn’t work? This blog post will show you how to fix a lamp that won’t turn on. We’ll also provide tips for avoiding this issue in the future.


If you have a lamp that won’t turn on, there are a few things you can do to try to fix it.

Summary: A lamp that won’t turn on can be frustrating and inconvenient, especially when it is needed for essential tasks or creating a cozy atmosphere. When faced with this issue, it is crucial to identify the cause of the problem to determine the appropriate solution. Common causes for a non-functioning lamp include issues with the light bulb, power supply, wiring, or the lamp’s internal components.

Before attempting any repairs, unplug the lamp from the wall outlet to ensure safety. Start by checking the most apparent cause of the problem: the light bulb. Remove the bulb and inspect it for any signs of damage or burnout. If necessary, replace it with a new bulb of the appropriate wattage and type. If the lamp still does not turn on, examine the power cord and plug for any visible signs of damage, fraying, or loose connections.

Additionally, try plugging the lamp into a different wall outlet to rule out any issues with the electrical supply. If the issue persists, the problem could lie within the lamp’s internal components, such as the socket, wiring, or switch. Inspect the socket for any signs of corrosion, damage, or loose connections, and replace it if necessary. For issues with the wiring or switch, it may be necessary to disassemble the lamp to access these components. If you are not comfortable with this task or if the issue remains unresolved, consider seeking professional assistance to repair the lamp and restore its functionality.

7 Reasons That Causes Problems on Lamps

1. Faulty Power Outlet

The first reason a lamp may not turn on is that the power outlet is not working. If you have another lamp or appliance that you can plug into the outlet to test it, that would be the best way to determine if this is the problem.

If not, you can use a circuit tester to see if power is going to the outlet. When checking the outlet, ensure that the switch controlling the outlet is turned on.

2. Broken Lamp Switch

Another common reason a lamp may not turn on is that the switch is broken. If you have a multimeter, you can test the switch to see if it works properly.

To do this, you’ll need to remove the lamp’s switch and test it for continuity. If there is no continuity, then the switch will need to be replaced. Also, check if the switch is turned on.

3. Burned Out Light Bulb

A burned-out light bulb is another common reason a lamp may not turn on. To test if the bulb is burned out, remove it from the socket and test it in another known working lamp.


If the bulb does not work in the other lamp, it must be replaced. Again, make sure the bulb you use is the correct socket wattage.

4. Loose Electrical Connection

A loose electrical connection is another possible reason a lamp may not turn on. You’ll need to remove the lamp shade and bulb to check for this.

Once these have been removed, inspect the wires and sockets to make sure they are tight and not loose. If any connections are loose, tighten them with a screwdriver.

5. Bulb Is Not Screwed In Tightly

Another possible reason your lamp may not turn on is that the bulb is not screwed in tightly enough. To fix this, remove the bulb and screw it back in until it is tight.

If your lamp does not turn on, try replacing the bulb with a new one. Make sure that the bulb you use is the correct size and wattage for your lamp.

6. Corroded Socket

If your lamp has a corroded socket, this could be the reason why it won’t turn on. To fix this, you’ll need to clean the socket. First, unscrew the light bulb from the socket.


Then, clean the metal contacts inside the socket with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. Once the contacts are clean, screw the light bulb back into the socket.

7. Damaged or Frayed Wiring

If the wiring to the lamp is damaged or frayed, it may be why the lamp won’t turn on. You’ll need to inspect the wiring to see any issues. If you see any damage, you’ll need to replace the wiring.

Make sure the wires are properly connected and not loose. Also, check to see if any exposed wire could be touching something else and causing a short.

8 Steps on How to Fix a Lamp That Won’t Turn on

Step 1: Unplug the Lamp.

Before you do anything, unplug the lamp from the outlet. This will ensure you don’t accidentally electrocute yourself while working on the lamp.

Also, leave the light to cool down for about an hour before beginning any repairs. Finally, if you’re working with a halogen lamp, be extra careful, as the glass can get very hot.

Step 2: Remove the Lamp Shade.

Once the lamp is unplugged and cooled down, remove the lamp shade. In most cases, the shade is attached with a screw or clip. Carefully unscrew the screw, release the clip, and set the shade aside.

Make sure the shade is big enough not to get in the way while working on the lamp. If the shade is too small, it might get in the way and make it difficult to see what you’re doing.

Step 3: Inspect the Light Bulb.

Inspect the light bulb to see if it’s burned out. To do this, unscrew the light bulb from the socket and look at the filament inside.


If the filament is burned out, that’s likely the reason why your lamp won’t turn on. You’ll need to replace the light bulb before proceeding. If the light bulb isn’t burned, screw it back into the socket.

Step 4: Check the Lamp Socket.

The next check is the lamp socket if the light bulb isn’t burned out. Make sure the socket isn’t loose and that the connection is secure. If the socket is loose, tighten it with a screwdriver.

If the connection is loose, you may need to unscrew the socket and reattach it. Be careful not to over-tighten the screws, as this could strip the threads.

Step 5: Inspect the Lamp Cord.

Inspect the lamp cord for any signs of damage. Look for cracks, fraying, or bare wires. If you see any damage, it’s likely the reason why your lamp won’t turn on. You’ll need to replace the cord before proceeding. Make sure the cord is the correct size and type for your lamp.

Step 6: Clean the Light Socket.

If the light bulb and socket are both in good condition, the next thing to check is the light switch. Over time, the contacts inside the switch can get dirty, preventing the flow of electricity.

To clean the contacts, unscrew the switch plate and use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to clean them. Be careful not to touch the wires with your bare hands.

Step 7: Replace the Light Bulb.

If cleaning the light socket didn’t fix the problem, you may need to replace the light bulb. First, unscrew the old light bulb and dispose of it properly. Then, screw in a new light bulb with the same wattage.

Be careful not to touch the glass with your bare hands, as this can cause the bulb to break. If your lamp uses a halogen bulb, be extra careful, as the glass can get very hot.

Step 8: Test the Lamp.

Once you’ve replaced the light bulb and socket, it’s time to test the lamp. Plug it into an outlet and turn on the switch.


If the lamp still doesn’t work, there may be a problem with the electrical connection. Check to make sure all the wires are securely connected. If they’re not, you may need to call an electrician.

If you’ve followed these steps and your lamp still doesn’t work, it’s time to buy a new one. But before you do, dispose of the old lamp properly. Most lamps contain mercury, which can be harmful to the environment.

Now that you know how to fix a lamp that won’t turn on, you can enjoy the soft light of your favorite lamp once again.

You May Read Also: 7 Easy Solutions to Fix a Lamp Base

Additional Tips and Advice to Prevent Damage to Lamp

1. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using a lamp.

2. Be sure to unplug the lamp before beginning any repairs.

3. Do not over-tighten screws or sockets when reassembling the lamp.

4. Inspect the cord for any cracks or fraying before plugging it back in.

5. Use only lamps with the correct wattage for the socket.

6. Check the fuse or circuit breaker if your lamp doesn’t seem to be getting power.

7. Never use a lamp with a damaged socket, cord, or switch.

8. Discard any lamps that cannot be repaired.

Final Words

While it is possible to fix a lamp that won’t turn on, it is important to be aware of the risks before trying. If your lamp isn’t turning on, there are a few troubleshooting tips that you can try before taking it in for repair.

The first thing to check is the outlet; if the outlet is working, then you can move on to check the light bulb.

Finally, if the light bulb is bad, you can replace it yourself or take it in for repair. If you have any doubts or concerns, it may be best to call a professional electrician.

Hopefully, this article on how to fix a lamp that won’t turn on has provided you with enough information to diagnose and fix the problem successfully.

Have you tried fixing your lamp yet? Let us know how it goes in the comments below!

Leave a Comment