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Predecessor to the Compact Fluorescent Light. Invention is credited to Thomas Edison in 1879.

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Ceiling Light Fixture Dimmer Broken

I installed a ceiling light fixture with bulbs who’s voltage was too high. A power surge resulted. The dimmer switch will turn the light on and off but the dimmer function doesn’t work any more. Do I need to purchase a new fixture or can I fix it?

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You may have to replace the dimmer switch with a standard on/off light switch so that you can safely open and inspect the dimmer switch to ascertain what the damage is.

It may be that it can be repaired depending if the burnt out components are easy to source or not.

Take some close up images of the dimmer's circuit board showing the damage and post back here.

Here's how to do this on ifixit

Adding images to an existing question

Also I think you meant to say that the bulbs were of too high a wattage rating for the dimmer, not too high a voltage

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Hi, thanks so much for your suggestion! I will give this a try. Replacing the switch will be easier then replacing the fixture. Fingers crossed!


@cwesterhout ,

Don't know where you are but here most light switches have a current rating of 10A and the voltage supply here is 240VAC so the power that the switch can handle is 2400W.

So when you go to get a switch check its current rating and then multiply that by the voltage supply where you are to get the wattage that is can handle.

Then divide the wattage by the wattage of the lights to know the maximum number of lights that can be connected to the switch

e.g. 10A switch x 240V supply = 2400W maximum power capacity of switch

3 lights @ 80 watts each = 240W

no problems

Insert your own values to find out if it is safe to do so. No doubt it will be with room to spare

Most dimmers can't handle high loads because when dimming the excess power is converted to heat and the dimmer components get overheated and fail when there is too much current flowing through the dimmer .

Also were you installing LED lighting by any chance? A lot of the older dimmer switches aren't suitable for LED lights and need to be replaced by ones that are if LED lights are being installed.


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