Project Lamps

Acquiring The Right Projector Bulb Replacement

Projection equipment of all types require a light source to project an image through a lens so that it appears larger. These bulbs can include many different types of light bulbs, which offer their own advantages for producing a clear image on a variety of surfaces.

Ultimately, projector bulbs will require a replacement once the lamp life has ended. How often a projector bulb needs to be replaced will depend on the type of bulb and other factors.

The very first types of projectors used mirrors, flame, limelight, and eventually, the incandescent bulb. Incandescents were the first type of projector bulb. Though they have been phased out for more efficient, longer-lasting, and higher-intensity bulb options, incandescent projectors are still available and can be a great choice depending on the application. They are among the lower cost options for a projector bulb, but they will need replacements more frequently than other types.

Incandescent projector bulbs will need to be replaced after roughly 1000 hours of use. These bulbs may lack housing and can be directly screwed into the projector like many other incandescent light fixtures.

When replacing an incandescent light bulb, the correct shape, size, voltage, and other factors must be accounted for to ensure proper and safe function within the projector.

When halogen bulbs became widely available, they were used to advance the light source in many projectors. In addition to providing brighter, more focused illumination for a clearer projected image, these bulbs needed to be replaced less often.

Halogen light bulbs offer twice the lamp life of incandescents at around 2,000 hours. Halogen projector bulb replacements may or may not include the housing. These bulbs will also emit a considerable amount of heat, so it is important to ensure all cooling features on the projector are working properly and the replacement bulb’s voltage is correct.

Other types of projector bulbs include high-intensity discharge bulbs, metal halide bulbs, and xenon bulbs. These bulbs offer very bright illumination. Projectors using them as a light source can project very vibrant, clear images on a range of surfaces.

These bulbs will often be contained within the housing. Replacing them within the projector may require a special process. Sometimes this will need to be completed by the projector manufacturer or an authorized service technician.

Lamp life for these bulbs will range between 1,200 hours and 5,000 hours. DLP and LCD projector bulbs offer similar performance and lamp life.

Newer to the projector market are LED projector bulbs, which seldom need to be replaced as these light sources offer 10,000 hours or greater. They typically last the life of the projection equipment.

For many commercial and household projectors, it’s possible to purchase replacements from authorized light bulb distributors. Some may specialize in replacement bulbs and housing from certain manufacturers. For some projectors, an authorized service provider may be required to open up the projector and replace the bulb or module with professional tools.

Any projector bulb replacements completed at home should be done with care. It is very important to ensure bulbs with a compatible shape and voltage are used in order to prevent fire hazards, component damage, explosions, and equipment failure.

How Much Does It Cost To Replace A Projector Bulb?
The cost of replacement projector bulbs will vary based on the bulb type, whether housing is included, and other factors. A bare halogen projector bulb without housing can cost just a few dollars each. High-intensity bulbs with projector-specific lamp housing can cost several hundred dollars.

Can Projector Bulbs Be Replaced?
Projector bulbs can be replaced in many projectors. In some models, the bulb can be removed and a bare bulb can be easily inserted as a replacement. In other models, the housing or bulb module will need to be replaced in full. Some projectors will require special kits or repair services to properly replace a bulb.