Near Miss: Emergency lighting doesn’t works

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During the advice visits to our clients facilities, lots of times it is observed that emergency lighting is not checked or maintained, so in an emergency  event can´t make its main function, which is provide light along escape routes, protection systems and safety equipment, signs and indications,…

In an user level, as a preventive measure, we can regularly test how it works, switch off the circuit switch named “emergency” in the electric panel.

Emergency circuit switch

Emergency circuit switch

If lighting doesn´t works, most frequent failure are:

  • Fluorescent tube or lamp (indeed, there are emergency lighting still with lamps) burnt-out;
  • Fluorescent tube or lamp turned on, without a cut in the electrical current;
  • Battery fail (when the electrical current cuts, the light turns on but lasts a few seconds);
  • Burnt-out indicators (some emergency lighting have indicators for AC and battery charge).

Lack of information makes that workers themselves try to repair an emergency light: the most probable is that the model is already unlisted (and it is not even manufactured), as a consequence, it is difficult to find spare parts for models “relatively old” (i.e. lamps and batts).

My recommendation is always to call an electrician or maintenance staff (I always do because I´m not a handy man) since lots of times it is not enough with replacing a light´s batt, but the problem can´t be detected (i.e. resistance fails, transistor,…).

If a replacement is required, there are already available LED emergency lighting for less than 30€, improving the features of previous emergency lighting:

  • More energetic efficiency;
  • More than 9-10 hrs. of autonomy;
  • 50.000-60.000 hrs. life;
  • 300 lumen (lux = lumen/m2) intensity;
  • Individual LEDs, replaceable in some models.
LEDs emergency light

LEDs emergency light

Do you have to replace an emergency light?. Will you repair or replace it for one with LEDs?.


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    I will be very thankful if you help me! I tested my emergency light ( and the reason that it doesn’t work is broken blow fuse! How I can change it. I can’t find any tips or tutorials how to do it and I’m afraid to brake it. I will be very thankful for all useful information!

    • Miquel Mor

      Hello Daniel,

      Sorry, but I can’t help you in a technical way.

      You can contact with the light manufacturer? I think is the best choise in your case.

      Thank you for contact with us!