Home>Discussions>ELECTRICAL & LIGHTING>Old pull chain light socket repair
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lalightbody
Old pull chain light socket repair

Our 100 year old farm house has ceiling lights that are suspended by their own wires. One of the pull chains has pulled out, and I can't figure out how to open the socket housing inorder to replace the chain. Advice on how to open the top cap would be most appreciated.
Regards, LL

A. Spruce
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

Can you provide a picture of the fixture in question? The sockets that I'm familiar with basically "twist lock" together. The second image in this link shows what I'm referring to. http://www.hometips.com/content/lamps_ef.html

Some ceramic fixtures are screwed together, there is a porcelain ring that screws down over the socket to hold it in place, simply unscrew the ring and you're in.

Whatever you do DO NOT work on an energized circuit! Turn off the breaker (or remove the fuse ) then test the socket with a voltage tester to be certain it's deactivated.

lalightbody
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

Thanks. I wish I could send a photo. The assembly I have suspends from the ceiling from a two piece ceramic mount. The lower half has electrical tabs that twist lock into electrical tabs in the upper half. So I'm disconnected from the power.
Unlike the socket you showed, the socket housing I have has a smooth flange where cap fits over barrel. There is a stamping on the barrel that reads: 250W-250V
GE Co. USA
The socket is in good condition with only minor surface oxidation. I just can't seem to get the cap to twist or slide in any direction in order to reassemble the pull chain to the switch.
Regards, LL

A. Spruce
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

I knew the image that I attached wasn't exact to your situation, it was to show the "twist lock" that I was referring to.

I will leave further comment to the electrical pro's. Do let us know how things work out.

kentvw
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

I think any "electric pro" that could answer this question is either playing a harp or has his tail on fire.

Maybe not.

Are there any screws on the inside of the socket??

lalightbody
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

Thanks. There is a screw inside the lamp socket that is not associated with the electrical contacts. I think it may connect the inner socket to the rotary switch ass'bly. I say this because the two move together with a small amount of play inside the socket housing and cap.
There is only one other screw head visible; inside the cord opening. It seems to be the center axis for the rotary switch, as I can feel the spring tension as I manually operate the switch with a screwdriver.
You're probably right about the old guys. It'd sure be sweet if one of them is reading this forum.(from anywhere!)
Later, LL

kentvw
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair
lalightbody wrote:

Thanks... It'd sure be sweet if one of them is reading this forum.(from anywhere!)
Later, LL

Well, there is one member here who posts from the beyond........ I'll let it go at that, LOL!

OTIS BERRY
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

AN OLD GUY ME.
COUPLE OF OPTIONS BOTH WILL HAVE VERTICAL ROTATION BY THE PULL. IF NOT IGNORE THE SUBSEQUENT.
EITHER THE SWITCH IS MULTI FUNCTIONAL WITH INTEGRATED WHEEL AND AN EXTERNAL CHAIN GUIDE. OR PERHAPS THE WHOLE UNIT IS CAPTURED INSIDE A CERAMIC BODY.
SEVERAL TYPES i HAVE SEEN.
IN THE ONE CASE, THE WHOLE UNIT MUST BE DISCONNECTED AND THE BASE DETACHES AND THE SOCKET BODY WITH INTEGRATED PULL COMES AWAY FROM THE SOCKET OPENING.
IN THE OTHER THE UNIT IS SCREWED FROM INSIDE THE SOCKET TO THE BODY OF THE CONTAINER.
IF THERE IS A CARDBOARD/PHENOLIC-LIKE COVERING UNDER THE CENTER ELECTRICAL CONNECTION, THEN DONOT REMOVE THIS SCREW LEST YOU COMPLETELY DISASSEMBLE THE ROTARY PULL.

Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

I'm still in my prime :) but suggest that you replace the socket with a new UL listed one.

Chances are anything that old has high contact resistance, which burns houses down.

JLMCDANIEL
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

Amost all the porcelain fixtures I've seen have a porcelain retaining ring. The ring on some are very difficult to remove. If you can put some WD40 in so it coats the threads it may help. If you do have pictures you can e-mail them to me [email protected] Put "TOH PICS" in the subject line and include either your TOH user name or a link to the thread and I will post the pictures for you.

Jack

Fencepost
Re: Old pull chain light socket repair

The original poster hasn't been around these forums since over 5 years ago. While your advice may be valid, don't hold your breath waiting for a response.

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