8 Common Causes of Light Flickering and How to Fix Them

Author: Passey Electric. |


Homes use various types of lighting, from lamps and chandeliers to recessed cans and track lighting. While each type of light has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, they all have one thing in common – they can all flicker. 

However, most people take their home's lighting for granted. But when your lights start flickering, it can be a sign of a serious problem. In this blog, we'll discuss the eight most common causes of light flickering and what you can do to fix them. 

1. Loose Wiring

One of the most common reasons for flickering lights is loose wiring. Over time, wires can become loose from their connections, causing them to arc and flicker. This is a serious issue because it can cause a fire if not addressed immediately. 

If you notice any flickering, check your wiring and make sure all connections are tight. If the wire is damaged, you'll need to replace it.

2. Faulty Light Bulbs

Another common cause of flickering lights is a faulty light bulb. If a bulb is loose in its socket, it can cause the electrical current to fluctuate, causing the light to flicker. 

This is not usually a serious issue, but it can be annoying. Simply tighten the bulb in its socket to fix the problem. If the lightbulb is still flickering, try replacing it with a new one. 

3. Power Surges

Power surges usually happen when there is a sudden increase in demand for electricity, such as during a thunderstorm. The surge can cause the lights to flicker or even go out completely. If this happens, avoid using any electrical appliances until the power surge has subsided. If possible, with caution, unplug any appliances causing the power surge.

4. Electrical Problems

If your flickering lights are accompanied by other electrical problems, such as outlets not working or sparks coming from outlets, this is a sign of a more serious issue. This could be a sign of an electrical short circuit, which can be very dangerous. If you notice any of these other electrical problems, you should call an electrician immediately.

5. Damaged Light Fixtures

If a light fixture is damaged, it can cause the light to flicker. This is because the electrical current is not flowing smoothly through the fixture. Replace any damaged light fixtures.

6. Faulty Light Switches

Faulty light switches can cause the light to flicker. This is because the electrical current is not flowing smoothly through the switch. Replace any faulty light switches. 

7. Dirty Light Sockets

Dirty light sockets can cause the light to flicker. This is because the electrical current is not flowing smoothly through the socket. Clean the light socket with a dry cloth.

8. Ghosts

Ok, so this one is a bit of a joke. But some people do believe that flickering lights can be a sign of a ghost haunting your home. While there is no scientific evidence to support this claim, it is still a possibility. If you are truly concerned that your flickering lights may be due to a ghost, you can always call a ghostbuster to investigate.


Flickering lights can be a nuisance, but they can also be a sign of a serious electrical issue. There are several common causes of light flickering, and each one has a different solution. If your light is flickering due to a loose bulb, simply tighten it. If the flickering is due to a loose connection, either tighten the connection or replace the wires. 

If you're still unsure what's causing the problem, it's always best to call an electrician to take a look. They will be able to diagnose the problem and make the necessary repairs.

At Passey Electric, we offer a full range of commercial electrical services in Southern Alberta.  From underground wiring to overhead lighting upgrades, we can handle any electrical problems. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you stay safe.