Sunday, May 27, 2012

How You Can Increase The Lifespan Of Your Projector Bulb Or Lamp

The replacement of projector bulbs is an all-too-frequent occurrence for anybody that has owned a home theater projector for any length of time. While a two thousand hour lifespan may sound like a lifetime to some people, rest assured it is not long before the projector lamp will need replacing. There are however, some general tips that can help to expand the life of a headlamp for the projection unit.

Do not touch the lamp with bare hands
One of the most frequent problems encountered is people replacing the bulbs with their bare hands. While this is fine for an ordinary light bulb, it is not a good practice for a projector lamp. The lamp in a projection unit burns much hotter than any regular light bulbs. The effects of touching it with bare skin are equally magnified and problematic.

Touching a projector bulb with the bare skin leaves traces of oil on the lamp surface. While this may seem a very minor detail, it is detrimental both to the bulb and the quality of the resulting multimedia display. The oils will get burnt onto the lamp and drastically reduce the lifespan. As the oil is baked into the surface, it actually diffuses the light being projected, reducing the lumens actually being sent to the refractive surfaces. The light will not be enough to project the image that has come to be expected from the home theater projection system. While the problem may not be noticeable at first, over the course of a little time, the quality will degrade to the point of not being viewable.

Turn off the projector power after turning off the lamp

It is highly recommended to turn the power on the projector to the “off” position only after having turned off the lamp and allowing it to cool. This will allow the cooling fans to do the job they were designed to do. While rapid cooling and heating result in repeated contractions and expansions of the bulb filament, it is much better that it be done more quickly with the cooling fans. Likewise, turning the projector on and allowing the cooling fans to run for a moment before turning on the lamp will help as well. This will add hours to bulb life expectancy and allow for longer hours of viewing pleasure on the home theater projection system.

Constant Movements

Constantly bumping or moving the projector, especially while it is hot can be very detrimental to the projector lamp. The filament in the bulb loses almost all tensile strength when it is heated during normal usage. It is much the same as the filament in a camp lantern. The principle is the same; the filament effectively becomes almost the same consistency as ash, making it extremely vulnerable to damage when it is hot. Even after proper cooling, the lamp filament is very sensitive. Care should be taken when moving the projector for whatever reason. While it is always a good idea to be careful with electronic equipment, some aspects of the home projector are actually a bit more sensitive.

It will usually be necessary to move the projector when cleaning the filters. As always, it is a good idea to move it carefully without jerking it around or bumping it any more than needed. Taking an extra moment or two to check the projector mount and make sure it is still securely fastened can also be beneficial and prevent slips and movement which may otherwise be harmful.

With a little care and a little preventative maintenance, the projector lamps will still need to be changed, but not nearly as often.

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