How To Remove A Broken Light Bulb

May 24th 2019 Staff

Most of us have had the unfortunate pleasure of dealing with a broken light bulb in its lighting fixture. Our grandmothers told us that if a light bulb broke it its socket, you can use a potato to remove it. Does this trick actually work? Lighting One of Cincinnati offers the best lighting solutions for both interior lighting such as bathroom lighting and exterior lighting, such as walkway lighting. In this blog post, we’ll review some ways on how to remove a broken light bulb from its socket. Contact us today!


First, ensure the power to the light fixture is off. Turning off the light switch is paramount, but to be extra safe, flip the breaker off as well. With modern light sockets, you can have more than one source of electricity flowing.

  • Pliers. What would our lives be like without tools such as pliers? These are excellent tools to remove broken light bulbs. Simply grip the glass base of the filament with your pair of pliers (needle-nose pliers work the best) and twist counter-clockwise. If the filament breaks, push the pliers against the base of the bulb (so the pliers will be in an open position), and twist.
  • Potato. This beloved spud is useful for more than just mashed goodness. To use a potato to remove a broken light bulb, cut the potato in half. Press the bulb against the light socket and twist counter-clockwise. The potato will attach itself to the base of the bulb. Throw away both when finished.
  • Epoxy plus a screwdriver. When using epoxy to remove a broken light bulb, Lighting One of Cincinnati suggests using the quick-drying epoxy. You fill the broken bulb part or base with epoxy, and insert the screwdriver into the epoxy like a handle. Then you let it dry. Once the epoxy hardens, you then use the screwdriver to twist the light bulb base out.
  • Broken bulb extractor. While not as fun as the other methods to remove a light bulb, a broken bulb extractor gets the job done. Once power has been cut to your lighting fixture, use the broken bulb extractor by putting it in the base of the bulb and similar to the pliers, press it against the sides. Then turn, and voila! Your lighting fixture has been saved!

Lighting One is Cincinnati’s Top Rated Local® lighting experts. With modern LED bulbs, you can usually avoid all of this hassle because the base is much easier to remove if the light bulb breaks. However, for incandescent light bulbs, these tricks are tried and true.

Lighting One of Cincinnati is your go-to for lighting solutions. From chandeliers, lamps, or home accents, we’ve got everything you need to make your rooms warm and cozy for down time or bright and beautiful for all of your tasks. Our lighting showroom has thousands of offerings to spark your creative juices, and our lighting experts are here to help you choose which lighting is for you. Contact us today!

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