How to Change a Pool Light Bulb

Has your pool light bulb burnt out? Follow this simple guide to make the change as easy as possible.

1. Caution: Possible Electrical Shock or Electrocution: For your safety please use the necessary precautions before attempting to work with water and electricity. If you are unsure or unfamiliar with how to work with water and electricity, do not attempt the following steps.

2. You will first need to purchase the correct replacement pool light bulb and lens gasket for your light fixture. There is not one standard replacement bulb and gasket for all pool lights. That would be too easy!

3. If you don't have any information about your pool light, you will most likely need to follow the steps below to remove the light from the pool wall. The manufacturer name, model number, voltage and wattage of pool lights is typically found on a sticker on the back of the light housing (usually where the cord of the light attaches to the housing).

4. If you find that there is no sticker or it is unreadable, there are a couple things you can try in order to identify the light. Check for a part number on the face ring and on the lens as manufacturers sometimes have part numbers molded into the parts. You can also see if the pool light bulb itself has any specs on it. If it is labeled with wattage, voltage and base type (R40 would be the base for a standard "flood" type bulb), you would have the necessary information needed to replace the bulb. Keep in mind this will not identify the gasket which should be replaced to ensure a proper seal on your pool light. Try measuring the outside diameter and thickness of the gasket and see if it matches the gaskets for the most common pool lights, the Hayward Astrolite or Pentair Amerlite.

5. Gather the following items: Replacement pool light bulb, new lens gasket, Phillips and flat head screwdrivers, a circuit tester, and a couple of dry towels.

6. Locate your circuit breaker box and shut off all electricity to the pool area. Use a circuit tester if you're not positive that all of the electricity is off.

7. Now it's time to remove the pool light from its casing, commonly referred to as the light niche or can. Most pool light fixtures are secured to the niche with a single pilot screw at the top of the light. Locate and remove this screw.

8. Pry the light fixture out of the niche. There should be enough extra cord for you to pull the light up onto the pool deck. Note how the excess cord is stored so you can replace it the same way when re-installing the light. Lay the light on one of the towels to protect the lens from scraping or breaking on the deck. Use the other towel to dry the light.

9. To get to the light bulb, you will need to remove the face ring, lens gasket and lens. Corrosion may have occurred so use care and the correct tools. Remove the screws or clamps holding the light fixture together. Gently pry off the face ring and then the gasket and lens. Clean any old gasket residue from the surface on the lens using a damp rag.

10. Using a towel, unscrew the light bulb with great care. Dry the inside of the light fixture and clean any gasket residue from the light housing that comes in contact with the gasket. Do not use anything hard to scrape clean. If you score the surface of the housing, it may not seal properly.

11. Screw the new bulb in securely but do not over-tighten. Here's a tip from one of our readers. "When you install a new bulb, buy some dielectric bulb grease and put it on the bulb Edison base socket. It will make a better connection and the next time you remove the bulb it will come out easy." Install new lens gasket around the lens and reassemble the lamp fixture.

12. Find a friend to watch the light while you briefly turn on the electricity. This is to confirm that the new bulb actually works. These lights are not made to be turned on out of the water, so this has to be a very quick check.

13. Now check for leaks by placing the light underwater. A few bubbles may float up, but air should not be coming from the sealed outer edges.

14. Restore the pool light and the excess cord to their original positions. Make sure the screw holes line up correctly.

15. Turn your electricity back on and enjoy swimming at night once again.

If you have any other questions about pool and spa products please do let us know - we are here to help!

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