WhiteEyebrows vs. The Lightbulb

You know something is wrong when you’re Googling: “how to change a lightbulb”…

Yes, my friends, last night I arrived home to find that I had, indeed, left my exterior lights on all night and all day long – and I noticed that one of them was finally burned out (2.5 years is pretty good for an exterior incandessant bulb, no?)

So time to replace the bulb, right?

Supposedly, this is an easy job.  So easy that there is even a stupid joke about how easy it should be.. right?  Well, whoever invented this chinese death trap of a light bulb container is to blame then for my ensuing stupidity…

That’s right, this little faux-painted Chinese piece of crap almost ruined entire life and obliterated my self-esteem!!

First of all, I must mention that I am a human factors/ergonomic expert for a living – and I can safely say that, on first approach, there was no obvious way to get inside of this little thing.  I examined it thoroughly for about 5 minutes from several angles.

But you have to be able to change the bulb somehow right?  So I began to the trial and error…  First I thought one might slide a piece of the front glass up, as you would do in an interior lamp…


Then I thought, well, the top has to come off somehow, cause it makes absolutely no sense to change this lightbulb from the bottom… So I unscrewed the large decorative (what looked like a) nut on top, which turns out to be a bolt that keeps the top assembly together… So now I had lost a nut down in the light, and only had a 1/4″ hole into the top of the fixture…

Wrong again.

Then my eye spotted these little nubbies… I call them nubbies, cause they are about an 1/8″ around, and they are the nuts that hold the top onto the frame.  I start removing them… and there are 8!  And they are a BEAR to remove!  They are on TIGHT, and they are not easily grippable – nor are they flattened so you can use a pair of pliers…

Then there was this elaborate dance to not lose the 8 little nubby bolts, nor the top big bolt through the 1/4″ hole I had already created in the top of the fixture.  A comedy of errors ensued.

Upon removal and further examination, it turns out the 8 little nubbies are, indeed, the only way into the beastly lantern.

Success!  I finally made it inside the belly of the beast.  Lightbulb unscrewed – lightbulb replaced.

Putting the top back on was also some kind of chinese puzzle.  Apparently you have to squeeze and pull and twist the little aluminum frame just perfectly so that all of the little 1/8″ bolts that take the little nubby nuts all fit down onto the top at the same time.

In the end, like all good home improvement projects, this took twice and long and cost 3 times as much as it should have.

7 thoughts on “WhiteEyebrows vs. The Lightbulb”

  1. And this is one of… what? like 4 or 6 that will very soon now, have to have a new bulb in the next month cause they will all go out, one by one a week apart for the next little bit.

  2. This is a funny post. I would have had money riding on you in a contest against a light bulb. However, after reading the post, I have to wonder….

  3. how many WhiteEyebrows does it take to screw in a light bulb? Just one but it will take 5 hours and three trips to home depot.

  4. “You know something is wrong when you’re Googling: ‘how to change a lightbulb’…”


  5. I am impressed by your perserverance. I would have probably let it just sit there…for a good long while and then asked one of my friends (probably you or T) to change it for me. Well, see, either way you wouldn’t have gotten out of it. 🙂

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