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Shower Stall Recessed Can Shuts Off Then Comes Back On After A Few Minutes

August 14, 2006

Q: My light bulb over the shower stall occassionally shuts off & then comes back on after a few minutes. This seems to occur more frequently during the summer months when it’s hotter. I always had this problem ever since I got my bathroom done by a contractor 7 years ago. What do you think is causing this? Do I need to have electrical work done to it?

A: Your light bulb’s wattage is too high. The recessed can is doing it’s job. There is a thermal protector in it to prevent fires from large wattage light bulbs. When the thermal protector gets too hot is disconnects the power to the bulb. Once it cools down it allows the power to return to the bulb.

Pull down the shower trim and determine the light bulb’s maximum wattage allowed; it is marked on the shower trim. Ignore the maximum wattages listed on the recessed can, these are only if your trim is an open type. The shower trim is enclosed and traps more heat. Typically, maximum wattage is 40 watts for an A lamp or regular incandescent light bulb.

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