Light Flickering: 5 Common Issues and Fixes

Posted on: January 20th, 2020 by admin No Comments
an image of a light bulb plugging itself into a plug socket

There’s nothing worse than when you’re sitting on your sofa at home, trying to watch TV, and you can see a flickering light in your direct or peripheral vision. Flickering lights are annoying; sometimes they are harmless, but other times they can be a cause for concern. So what causes light flickering, and how can you tell the difference between a harmless flicker and something to pay attention to? 

To help homeowners, we have collated a list of 5 common causes of flickering lights, issues and fixes. For anything serious, we advise contacting a professional electrician. Here at First Strike Electrical, we are on hand 24/7, serving areas across London including Camden, Islington and Notting Hill.

Why are my lights flickering or blinking?

Occasional light flickering is completely normal, but if you’re noticing it occur frequently and it didn’t happen before then it might be time to investigate it. Lights can flicker for a number of reasons, some of which are harmless and others more serious. As electrical specialists, we have provided some troubleshooting tips below that you can try out. For any serious electrical issues, we advise calling an electrician. If in any doubt, don’t attempt to fix the issue yourself, seek professional advice.

What are the common causes of light flickering?

Loose bulb

Over time bulbs can become loose as they lose their connection with the socket; this can cause light flickering. This is an easy fix and just requires you to tighten the loose bulb. Light flickering may also be related to the type of bulb, for example fluorescent or LED bulbs. These types of bulbs can cause light dimming and flicker when they are set on low.

Loose plug

Similar to a bulb coming loose over time, plugs can also lose their connection when they are not firmly placed in the wall socket. Make sure this is in the wall socket correctly.

Faulty light or light switch

Another reason why your light is flickering could be due to a poor connection between the light switch fixture and the bulb. You can try to give this a very gentle wiggle which may fix the problem. 

Too many plugs in one socket

It is worth checking how many plugs you have connected to one socket, and on an extension cable. If you have multiple appliances piled onto one this requires more current on startup and can cause a voltage drop. Too many plugs can cause bigger electrical issues such as sensory overload on the circuit, and voltage fluctuations. There is a simple fix for this: cut the amount of appliances using one socket and avoid overloading.

Loose or faulty wiring

It is also worth checking whether your appliances have loose or outdated wiring. If so, perhaps an upgrade is worth investing in. 

Other issues

You can also check to see if its a problem with your electric utility service, the meter box or the main service cable connection. If you suspect it is one of these, it is advisable to consult an electrician as there may be a bigger issue at hand.

Fix the flicker yourself or call an expert?

Some DIY troubleshooting of light flickering in your home can be effective, particularly if it’s just a case of a loose bulb or changing a light bulb. However, if the problem requires more than a simple fix, it is always advisable to consult a professional electrician before attempting to carry out any comprehensive electrical work.


If you’re in the London area, our team of electricians here at First Strike Electrical can help with flickering lights and any other electrical services you require. Give us a call today on 0203 633 4536, or fill out our online contact form and one of our friendly and expert team will be in touch.

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