Lampshades And Maximum Wattage Requirements

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When people purchase an Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certified lamp, they are surprised that the lampshade will have the light bulb’s maximum wattage information. The lampshade must have a minimum wattage as one of the requirements of a UL-certified light.

Every UL-certified lamp you receive should have information about the maximum light bulb wattage you can safely use for the lamp. You can find this information on the light socket or in the attached sticker to your lampshade. You must follow the requirements as the lamp has been tested and certified to be safe at that specified wattage.

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Lampshade And Maximum Wattages Requirements

UL-certified lamps that you purchase will tell you what size of lightbulb you can safely put into the lamp.

Here is how you can find this information:

Lamp Socket

Every UL-certified lamp should have a sticker on the lamp socket, which will tell you the maximum wattage of a lightbulb you could use safely in the socket. For example, if it says that you should not use a lightbulb stronger than 60 watts, you can safely put in a lightbulb that is 40 watts.

On the other hand, if it says that you should put in 40 watts or less lightbulb, you should not put in a lightbulb that is 60 watts. The sticker on the light bulb is for the maximum amount of wattage you can safely put into the socket.

Your lamp has this sticker to show what type of watts suit the socket. Every UL-certified lamp must undergo a testing process before it can be shipped. The sticker is placed on the socket after the lamp has been tested and passed all the required tests.

Lamp Shades

When you purchase a lamp with a lampshade, the lampshade should also have a sticker to show the requirements about the maximum wattage of a lightbulb that you can use. A bulb must be a particular number of inches away from the shade for the UL requirement of a lampshade for safety issues.

For example, the sticker on the lampshade may say 40 watts, and the socket says 60 watts. I would put in a 40 watts bulb and not a 60 watts bulb to ensure no safety issues.

In theory, what is written on the lampshade should be the same as what is on the socket. Sometimes, if the shade and the lamp base have been purchased by the supplier separately, there could be some differences. In that case, I would follow the lowest amount of wattage listed on the information.

You might ask why any of this matters. Why should I even care? But this is all very important as Underwriter’s Laboratories exist to ensure the safety of electronic products, including lamps and other light sources.

It means every single lamp needs to undergo quality assurance before receiving it. So you must follow the safety instructions on both the socket and lampshade.

Need More Light? – Try LED Bulbs

If you find yourself in a situation where you have a table lamp, and you feel like the minimum wattage of the lightbulb is too small, and you need more light, then the best thing for you to do would be to switch to an LED bulb. The reason is that an LED bulb will give out more light.

The one lightbulb where it would be safe for you to upgrade to a higher wattage without a safety issue could be the LED bulb because an LED bulb uses less power as it has the same light as an incandescent bulb.

The newer LED bulbs are so efficient that they use little electricity and create little heat. That means that your lampshade will get minimal heat when heated up or lit up.

The LED lightbulb is one of the most energy-efficient lightbulbs out there. If you are looking for ways to save the environment, then LED bulbs should be your choice as they will use less energy for the same amount of light as any other lightbulbs.

We suggest reading our blog What Is The Difference Between LED, CFL, and Incandescent Light Bulbs?

Lampshade Vs. Lamp Sockets Wattage Warnings

Your lampshade and socket may not have the same lightbulb wattage warnings. That is because each UL testing requirement has different needs; different ways of testing the wattage are measured for a lampshade and lamp socket.

For the lampshade, the maximum number of wattage determination is by the size of the lampshade. In other words, it is measured by how far away the lightbulb is from the inner shade surface. The closer the lightbulb is to the inter-shade surface, the less recommended wattage it will be. The further away it is, the higher the wattage would be.

Here are some basic lampshade wattage requirements:

  • An 8″ to 10″ Lampshade – An 8″ to 10″ lampshade can usually handle a 60-watt bulb.
  • A 12″, 14″, 16″, And 20″ Shade – An 12″. 14″. 16′ and 20″ shade can usually handle a 100-watt light bulb.

From these measurements, the further away a lightbulb is from the shade interior, the more wattage it can handle. That is because the closer the heat source is to the lampshade, the greater the safety concerns.

The socket may have d different wattage requirements, which can require another amount. So even if you have a large shade on your socket, the lamp socket could be tested for different wattage. To see what wattage of the socket is, you need to look for the sticker on the lamp’s socket.

The supplier or the manufacturer does not control the lamp wattage, shade, and lightbulb wattage requirements. It is a policy of underwriters’ laboratories. In other words, for the manufacturer to sell the lamp, they must follow the UL standards and requirements.

That is why we have often said that the UL standards are technical and complex. To manufacture UL lamps, the manufacturer must clearly understand all UL requirements.

If any requirements are problematic, the UL factory inspectors will not allow the lamp to ship. That is why at Mondoro Company Limited, we have spent a lot of time understanding all UL safety requirements. We have had our own UL sticker and are exporting UL-certified lamps.

If you want to see how Mondoro can help you with your Ul Certified lamp needs, we would love to talk to you about how we can help you.

At Mondoro, we create, develop and manufacture home decor and home furnishing products.

Find out more about how Mondoro can help you create, develop, and manufacture excellent home decor and furniture products – don’t hesitate to contact me, AnitaCheck out my email by clicking here or become a part of our community and join our newsletter by clicking here.

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Anita Hummel
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