How to Clean Light Bulbs, Light Fixtures, Chandeliers, and Recessed Lighting

Did you know that dirty bulbs and light fixtures give less light than clean fixtures? Light bulbs are quite functional, serving the purpose of lighting up a home.

Light fixtures, chandeliers, and recessed lighting, on the other hand,are used for directing the light source and also for preventing visual glare. In addition, their interesting designs make them a part of the interior decor, adding glamour to a room.

However, they attract cobwebs, bugs, and dust which compromise their aesthetic value. Dirty lighting fixtures are not only an eye-sore but dirt reduces the lighting equipment’s visibility properties.

So how are you supposed to clean the lighting fixtures and how often should you clean them?

Also read: How to Troubleshoot Problems With Incandescent Light Bulbs

Challenges of Cleaning Light Fixtures

Most times, light fixtures are highly placed on the ceiling of a room, which poses a challenge of cleaning them. Indeed, most of them are delicate and can break easily. What’s more, they are screwed on the ceiling board.

Consequently cleaning light fixtures requires a ladder to reach them. And if they are being thoroughly cleaned, they also need to be unscrewed.

Remember that they are part of an electrical appliance. For the safety of the person cleaning them, they should be cool because hot bulbs are not safe to touch and may explode. Therefore, the power source should be off at least an hour before you start cleaning to give them time to cool off.

Above that, to avoid the risk of electrocution, avoid using too much water or cleaning fluids. Also, ensure that they have dried well before returning them back and switching on the bulb.

Tools and other Requirements For Cleaning Light Fixtures

To clean effectively, you need a cleaning buddy. For cleaning tools, as mentioned earlier, you will need a ladder. You will also need goggles,a glass-safe detergent, warm water, towels, a one part vinegar and three-parts water solution, a microfiber cloth,and a spray bottle.

White gloves or lint-free cloths are required if the objects you are cleaning are prone to picking fingerprints.

Also, if the room where you are cleaning requires light during the day, then you may need to get a torch to help in removing the lighting fixtures. Then you will have to transfer the cleaning or wiping job to a well-lit room.

How Often to Clean Light Fixtures

You can organize to clean light fixtures lightly, like after every one or two weeks and then once every six months you can do a thorough cleaning. When you do clean them weekly, you don’t need to unscrew them. Use a dry dusting tool to clean dust and other dirt from them.

Thorough Cleaning Light Fixtures

You need ample time to clean them.Thorough cleaning of the light fixtures should be done carefully and not be rushed through.You need to first take them down carefully with the help of your cleaning buddy.

There are many types of fixtures made with different materials and different types of finishes. It is highly advisable to follow the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions. Whereas cleaning most of them simply requires a damp cloth, some may need a stronger solution and especially if they are very dusty. We advise you to use one part vinegar and three parts water solution.

Be careful not to lose any screws by putting all the screws in a container.

Spread a blanket and a towel separately on your floor. Now use the ladder to reach the fixtures and remove everything. As you remove each light fixture, hand them over carefully to your cleaning buddy to place them gently on the floor. Put the bulbs on a towel and the fixtures on the blanket.

Cleaning Bulbs

Bulbs are quite easy to clean. They should never be spray cleaned because water can get into the crevices of the lamp and spoil its electronics functions. Firstly, wipe off the dust with a dry microfiber cloth. Then use the one part vinegar and three parts water solution to dampen another clean microfiber cloth and wipe the bulb gently.

Wipe only the part that emits light avoiding water from getting into any part of the bulb. You can now reassemble it but all your lighting fixtures time, not less than one hour after cleaning, before switching the power source.

Glass Ceiling Fixtures

After removing them, dust them first with a dry microfiber cloth. Then wash them in a sink with warm water using mild dish soap. Give them time to soak before wiping them with a cleaning cloth. Now rinse the glass fixture with warm water and wipe it with a microfiber cloth. You can now reassemble it.

You can also spot clean the glass fixtures using a glass cleaner. Glass fixtures should never be washed in the dishwasher because they can break.

Another content of us: How to Determine Wattage of Light Fixture At Home

Other Fixtures

For wood fixtures, use canned air to remove dust from them before dusting with a piece of cloth. For metallic fixtures, simply wipe them with a microfiber cloth. While paper and fabric fixtures require canned air to remove accumulated dust before they can be wiped with a dusting sheet.

Recessed Lights

After removing the lights, first, use a dry microfiber cloth to wipe it from accumulated dust. Then, dampen a clean the microfiber cloth with the cleaning solution (one part vinegar and three parts water solution) to clean it. Give it time to dry before it can be re-assembled.


Your chandeliers are either glass or crystal. Cleaning chandeliers are quite an involving cleaning task because of their complex designs.

To avoid trying to figure out how they are assembled later when you need them back in one piece, you or your cleaning buddy can take a good picture of the chandelier before removing it. Alternatively, you can draw a diagram or drawing of how the parts fit together.

You will need to clean each section of the chandelier until you cover the whole piece. If the chandeliers are sensitive to fingerprints, then wear gloves.Spray the crystals and also spray each piece of the chandelier.

After spraying, dry them with a microfiber cloth which also helps in polishing them. Now reassemble the chandelier.

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