Recently I put new bulbs in my recessed lights and they will turn on, stay on for awhile, and then go out. After a period of time, they will come back on. What’s up with that?
These lights have what is known as a thermal overload on them. Because the light fixture is built into the ceiling, there is the chance of excess heat buildup from the illuminated bulb, posing a risk for fire. To mitigate this risk, a thermal overload is built into the light fixture. This acts as a thermometer. When the heat reaches a certain temperature, it will cause the thermal overload device to cut the power off. When the fixture cools down sufficiently, the electricity is reconnected. To minimize this problem, change out your bulbs to a lower wattage, thus producing less heat. Looking inside the fixture housing you might find a label or a tag which should have the wattage listing or what kind of bulbs work best in this fixture.