When to Change a Projector Lamp

Digital projector lamps are very high-tech pieces of equipment and therefore require care when installing & operating to ensure you receive optimum performance and long life. On occasions, a lamp may fail before its rated time, this can be caused by excess vibrations (due to being dropped or knocked), overheating, and even sometimes just a little bit of bad luck.

To minimise the chance of a lamp exploding inside the projector, most modern projectors will give you warnings. On most units you will receive warnings in the form of an indicator light or a message appearing on start up suggesting it is time to replace the lamp - when this message appears, it's time for a new lamp. An old lamp may cause a malfunction in the projector and, in some instances, the lamp may explode causing damage within the projector itself.

Warning Messages

Most Projectors will have different stages of warnings. As the lamp approaches the end of its rated life, the projector should give you incremental warnings, allowing enough time for you to order a replacement lamp before it gets critical. Depending on the popularity of the projector, ordering a lamp can take from overnight to a few weeks. For rare lamps, or lamps in shortage, ordering can take longer. In order to minimise downtime we always recommend ordering a lamp as soon as these warnings start to appear.

After the maximum lamp life is reached, the projector will cease to function. The lamp must be replaced before the projector will operate normally.

projector lamp warning

Resetting the lamp life

When a new lamp is installed, the lamp life timer must be reset (essentially telling the projector there is a new lamp installed).

There have been many occasions where customers have reset the lamp timer without replacing the lamp, this is strongly discouraged. Resetting the lamp timer with an old lamp can cause the lamp to explode within the projector. The lamp timers are on projectors to reduce this from happening. An exploding lamp will cause glass and small amounts of mercury to enter the projector and could cause severe damage.

Generally lamps lose brightness as they approach the end of their life, you will notice when a new lamp is installed that your image may appear brighter and sharper.