What Causes Projector Lamps To Explode – Know 5 Reasons

If you’re like most projector users, you probably don’t think about your lamp very often. But when that bulb explodes, it can be a pretty scary experience. The explosion is likely due to a faulty inverter, overheating in the lamp housing, or an electrical short.

The best way to prevent

 explosions are to take care of your equipment and follow good safety practices and know what causes projector lamps to explode

A projector lamp is a large cylinder that usually sits in the small space in front of the lens. Inside this cylinder are several components, including an electrical filament and inert gases which support the filament in its operation.

The lamp has two switches: one is used to turn it on, and one is used to turn it off. These switches are connected to an inverter, which provides the proper electrical power to the lamp.

Over time, all of these components can begin to fail, and the projector will lose one or more functions. For example, you might notice that your screen is dimmer than it used to be. Or perhaps your picture starts flickering and flashing on and off.

What causes projector lamps to explode

These are some Causes of projector bulbs exploding

Bulb manufacturing defect

An inverter malfunction has the potential to cause an explosion. Most projectors are equipped with a metal housing that protects the lamp and filters out harmful UV rays to provide safe viewing conditions. When properly cooled, this protective plating provides safety to both users and equipment.

However, if an inverter malfunctions or comes under physical stress, it may overheat and send more current through the lamp than it can handle. This stress can cause a break in a wire inside the lamp, which then completes an electrical circuit that is capable of igniting the gases within the bulb.

In some cases, inverter malfunctions are due to poor design or manufacturing defects where wires connecting components together do not provide adequate insulation. Improper soldering can put stress on components and make them extra sensitive to collapse.

Mistake during installation

When a projector is powered on, it can create a surge in power that can make a lamp explode if the installation was not done correctly. When a projector turns on, the lamp housing is linked literally to mains energy.

This creates a huge surge in power that can easily destroy electrical components in the lamp. There are two possible sources of power when a projector is turned on:

Electrical power from the mains (wall outlets)

DC power from the battery pack

In many projectors, the main power is initially used to light a pre-charge lamp. The light produced by this pre-charge lamp is used to heat the metal elements in the main arc lamp, which produces plasma that can then be used to power the projector.

End of lifespan

As a lamp ages, it becomes more likely to explode. This often occurs because the anode and cathode in older lamps become brittle with age. When the lamp is fired, it can crack and shatter from thermal shock.

In rare cases, brand new lamps have been known to explode. This is typically due to defects in the manufacturing process that create a large stress point on the glass.

Projector defect

Projectors from certain manufacturers have been known to explode during use, which is usually due to a design flaw in the projector’s inverter. In these cases, users have turned off the equipment and noticed scorch marks on the exterior of the projector.

This reveals that there is a significant amount of heat within the unit that is not dissipated.

Lamp housing defect

Poor quality lamp housings can break and shatter during operation. These defective housings can cause lamps to explode during operation, which is especially true if the projector is dropped or mishandled.

Insufficient lamp cooling

Overheating lamps can explode due to an electrical short caused by the heat generated by the lamp. If a projector is not properly cooled, it can cause the lamp to overheat and explode.

Best Lamps For Projectors

In order to prevent a projector from exploding, it is best to buy a high-quality lamp. So after doing research I have to finalize that EWO’S Projector Lamp is the best.

EWO’S Replacement Projector Lamp

The EWO’S lamp has been designed to offer high quality, and it will produce a bright and crisp image. These new lamp wicks are ideal for replacing the lamp wicks used in the Epson ELPLP96 projector.

It is the best lamp if you want to replace the projector lamp then you should go for EWO’s lamp.

How do prevent lamps from exploding?

Don’t utilize the projector for more than 1,500 hours per year.

The best way is still prevention, so purchase a high-quality lamp with a reliable brand. Sometimes there are still some cases in that lamps explode during the shipping process or installation; thus, users can follow related instructions to avoid danger.

To prevent yourself from the danger of explosion by unauthorized dealers or other situations, please keep your projector turned off when not in use. If the lamps have been installed and are ready for use but it is unclean after a long time of storage, please have them cleaned before turning them on to avoid any potential risk.

Best thermal grease or heat conductive paste must be used to improve heat transfer between the lamp base and heat sink and the metal part of the lamp base.

Don’t touch a lamp that has been in use because it will be extremely hot.

The temperature is around 200°C – 500°C (392°F – 932°F) during light source burning time, so the lamps may still produce a small number of toxic gases such as nitrogen oxides, nitrous acid, ammonia, etc. It’s not harmful to the human body for short-term use or once, but it is still recommended that contact with the eyes should be avoided as much as possible.

If the projector emits an unusual noise when turned on, or if it emits a burning smell, turn the unit off immediately and let it cool down.

If your projector was dropped or mishandled, do not turn it on.

When the lamp is broken and the bulb is turned off, please stay away from it immediately. The protective mask should be worn in case of broken and leakage of acid and alkali inside the lamps in order to cover the eyes, skin, and respiratory system.

How To Avoid Projector Lamp To Get Explode

Do not use a projector for more than 1,500 hours per year.

Do not leave lamps powered on when the projector is turned off.

Do not turn on a lamp unless it has been cooled down fully.

Do not touch a lamp that has been in use because it will be intensely hot.

If the projector emits an unusual noise when turned on, or if it emits a burning smell, turn the unit off immediately and let it cool down.

If your projector was dropped or mishandled, do not turn it on.

If the lamp housing is smashed or damaged, do not use the projector.

If you notice scorch marks around the lamp compartment, remove the unit from service and contact an authorized dealer.


Although the cause of projector lamp explosions is still being investigated, it’s clear that taking care of your equipment and following good safety practices can help prevent them. Make sure to maintain your projector in a calm, dehydrated zone and bypass revealing it to powerful temperatures.

Be careful when handling the lamp housing, and never touch the bulb itself. If you do experience an explosion, make sure to unplug the projector and contact customer service immediately.


What happens when a projector lamp gets old?

As the period reaches by, it will fail its brightness over time.

How much do projector lamps cost?

The average price is around $100-$500 per lamp. But it totally depends on the price of the projector model and the brand.

Do Lamps explode in a home cinema?

It can be dangerous because you may get eye damage like blindness if you are close to the explosion.

What causes projector lamp explosions?

It might be due to overheating or high internal pressure. It is recommended that users should unplug the projector when not in use for a certain period of time to avoid explosions.

What happens when a projector lamp burns out?

It will get darker and darker and then turn off.

How long do projector lamps last?

The life of a lamp varies depending on the model and make of the projector and how often it is used. But according to common sense, lamp life should last around 2000 hours.

Why do projector lamps contain mercury?

To help maintain the pressure inside the lamp and keep it shatter-proof.

Is it safe to use a projector?

Yes, as long as you follow safety precautions and don’t expose yourself or others to extreme heat or open flames. And it is not recommended to unplug your projector when not in use for a certain period of time.

Do I need to be a professional to fix this?

No, you don’t need to be a professional to fix the problem.

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