Whilst downlights are highly useful for use in your home, as they make seeing and focusing on tasks much easier, when the globes blow and no longer work a lot of people find themselves at a loss for what to do. Changing the globe in a downlight is not the same as changing a normal globe – the process is actually much more challenging and takes longer.
Begin by turning off the downlights at the switch. This is especially important if your lights take halogen globes, as they tend to get very hot very quickly. If you do have halogen globes, ensure that you allow them to cool for at least half an hour to prevent accidentally burning yourself.
Stand on a ladder or other sturdy surface to reach the downlights. You will need to remove the trim ring; you should be able to do this by pulling straight down on the ring. Most downlight rings are spring loaded, which makes removing them much easier as they will simply fall out when folded. If, however, you are unable to get your fingers underneath the lip of the downlight, you can use a flat-head screwdriver to pry the ring away from the ceiling. Sometimes, you may find that the downlight ring is unmovable – if this is the case, do not try to force it (as you may damage the ceiling) and contact a lighting specialist for advice.
Next, you will need to unscrew the blown downlight globe. There is a clever trick for doing this – cut a strip of duct tape so that it is about 6 inches long, then stick about 1 inch of each end onto the globe. Stick the remaining 4 inches of tape together, giving you an easy grip. Give the tape a twist, counterclockwise, and the globe should begin to unscrew. Continue to twist the tape until you are able to completely remove the downlight globe.
Ensure that you have a replacement globe that is of the same wattage and type as the one you have just removed, or that has been recommended for the type of downlight that you own. Finish by screwing the new globe into the downlight trim ring, ensuring that they have a snug fit but are not too tight.
If you find a globe difficult to screw in immediately stop and do not try to force it as something has probably gone wrong. Look inside the downlight for crossed wires and also double check that you have the correct size globe. You should also check the inside of your downlight for dents or bends, as this can prevent you from screwing a globe in. If this is the case, you will need to replace the damaged downlight.