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Why Recessed Can Lights Turn On and Off

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How To Fix Recessed Flush Lights that Turn On and Off: We have an existing recessed light fixture and the light just comes on by itself and then off.

Safety Feature of Recessed Lights Prevent Overheating

We have an existing recessed light that was installed by the builder which is located near the shower.

  • A flat toggle switch operates the lamp.
  • My wife swears the light just comes on by itself and then off.
  • I told her to firmly switch the lamp off when using it.
  • She thinks I am the problem for not fixing a problem.
  • What is going on here (with the lamp)? condensation issues?
  • The lamp is cover by glass and has frame, any ideas?

This recessed lighting question came from: Dan, a Homeowner from Petaluma, CA

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your recessed flush light question Dan.

The Safety Feature of Recessed Lights

  • I’m very familiar with this situation. What is happening is that the recessed can lights have a high-temp safety switch mounted into the top of the can which will turn the light off when it gets too hot.
  • The light fixture then cools down and after a few minutes it will come back on. this is especially true with the Halo brand.
  • It is not a problem in fact it is a great safety feature that prevents over heating which could lead to a fire.
  • This is especially noticeable with recessed lights installed in showers because of the required tempered glass cover plate.

How To Fix Recessed Flush Lights that Turn On and Off

  • The remedy is to install a light bulb with a lower wattage.
  • If the bulb is a 60 watt then replace it with an energy saving 56 watt bulb and this will take care of the problem.

More about Recessed Lighting

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2 Responses to “Why Recessed Can Lights Turn On and Off”
  1. Oscar says:

    Dave and Dan, that is true, but my situation is somehat different. Some of the low voltage lamps in the same switch turn on and others do not. After a while some will turn off and others will turn on. I think the device has gone haywire….

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