How to change fluorescent light high ceiling

How to Change Fluorescent Light High Ceiling | A Complete Guide

Thinking about changing your fluorescent light in your high ceiling, and you see it as difficult because of the height? Well, we are very much concerned about that too. Because just looking at the fluorescent from afar, you must wonder how much stress you will go through to have that fluorescent light replaced. That is why we have come up with this piece on how to change fluorescent light high ceiling. And now that you are here, let’s get started!

How to change fluorescent light high ceiling

You will be working at a high angle, and it is appropriate and desirable to have all your tools handy. It eases the process and ensures you do not have to stop at some point because you did not have access to a particular tool you need at some specific time. These tools may include but are not limited to:

  • Stepladder
  • A scaffolding where a step ladder is unavailable
  • A bulb grabber if your fluorescent is a bulb rather than the conventional long tube.
  • A stool if your ceiling is not very high, say 12 ft or 20 ft
  • A duster to get rid of the dust around your lighting utility.
  • Protective eye goggles
  • Safety gloves.
  • In some cases, you may require a Screwdriver.

We acknowledge that you might not have all these at home, but you can rent them at any close by rental tool shop for some quid. However, if you are looking at always having your lighting change and repairs done by your rather than a professional, you can cough out some dollars to purchase these tools.

Learn more: How to change light bulbs in tall celling

Now to the step-by-step guide to changing fluorescent light in high ceilings.

Step 1: Use a Bulb grabber

If your ceiling is not too high, you can explore using a pole to change lights for high ceilings, such as the bulb grabber. It is used for bulbs that are pointing down or slightly sideways. A problem might arise if the bulb is at an angle of 45 degrees, it will depend on how you could ingeniously use the bulb grabber to change the fluorescent light. The bulb grabber features suction cups that you can change to meet the size of any bulb.

Note that the bulb grabber might not work for you if your fluorescent is located very high in the ceiling and if the fluorescent is the conventional tube type. That takes us to the next step you can use on how to change fluorescent light in high ceiling.

Step 2: Use a platform of scaffolding

We chose to discuss this step first because it is safer than using a ladder. A ladder compared to a platform or scaffolding might not provide the right balance when no one is holding the ladder for you. Though the scaffolding or platform is more expensive to own than a ladder, it will help you with your light fixtures installation and change fluorescent light in light high ceilings. Place the platform or scaffolding under the fluorescent bulb or tube location. Climb it and have your replacement bulb or tube with you.

Step 3: Remove the cover

 If your bulb has a cover that has to be unscrewed, use your screwdriver to remove the screws used to keep them in place. In some cases, the cover might be held by hanging light from the ceiling with a clip. You have to locate the clips that are unclipped and remove the cover.

Step 4: Remove the old fluorescent tube or bulb

Tube flourescent bulb

To remove fluorescent tubes, you should start at a point and gently pull one end of the fluorescent tube out of the two clip joints. It should come out immediately. But if it does not, try it at the other end. Once you have removed the old florescent tube, replace it the same way by inserting the pin-point at one end of the florescent light fixtures and clipping the other end in place.

Pin fluorescent bulb

For fluorescent bulbs, they come in screw and pin varieties. To change the pin type of fluorescent bulb, you have to push the bulb back into the bulb holder and turn it anticlockwise. The bulb should come off at that point. Put in the new bulb and turn clockwise.

Screw fluorescent bulb

In rare cases, installing a light fixture for your florescent, the electrician may have used the screw bulb. The screw bulb can be changed when they burn out. All you have to do is to unscrew the old bulb anticlockwise, remove it, put in the new screw bulb, and turn it clockwise. Thus you have successfully changed the fluorescent light on the high ceiling.

Step 5: Clean the cover and replace

Home Guides recommend cleaning the cover with a duster. It will help the fluorescent light to be more appealing. Dust sometimes forms up and prevents your fluorescent light from shining bright as it should. When you dust the cover, you give your home a fresh outlook. Replace the cover with the light fixtures, clip, or screw back. You have completed the change of your fluorescent light high ceiling.

What are the benefits of a fluorescent light?

  1. They are cheap and affordable and can save you the cost of replacement like every other bulb type will burn out.
  2. Shine Retrofits says that one of the benefits of fluorescent light is that it is a very efficient bulb when it comes to energy saving.
  3. Another commanding benefit of fluorescent lights is that they can last for a long. That is, it has a long-life cycle. Some of them could last as small as 1500 hours, and others could reach up to 50,000 hours.

Although these are good benefits of fluorescent light, they have some disadvantages that range from containing mercury to how much they could cost to own at the initial stage. However, when the cost of a one-time buying is compared to the cost of changing other types of bulbs that burn out easily, then the fluorescent bulb is cost-effective to own.

How to change fluorescent light high ceiling: Tips

  • Wear your safety goggles and gloves when changing fluorescent light bulbs
  • Turn off the circuit breaker.
  • Have someone who can help you with switching the lights on to test your new bulb, rather than having to come down and go back up if something is wrong with fixing the bulb.
  • If you are afraid of heights, call a professional electrician to do the job for you.
  • Never replace lightbulbs with bare hands.
  • Always refer to manuals when a step is not clear.

Frequently Asked Question

How do you change a fluorescent light bulb in a drop ceiling?

You need an access platform to change a fluorescent light bulb in a drop ceiling. Once that is in place, the fluorescent light bulb in a drop ceiling would have levers holding the cover in place. You have to unhook these levers and you do not have to worry about the cover falling as the other end would be hinged still. Safely remove the other end, and replace the fluorescent light bulb with the new one. Also, you should hinge the cover back in place.

How do you change a lightbulb in a high stairwell?

To change a lightbulb in a high stairwell, you need a ladder for height. Screw the cover gently anticlockwise. Then the lightbulb should be visible at this point, remove the old lightbulb, place it aside or give it to someone helping you who is close by. Put in the new lightbulb. Test that the new lightbulb works and replace the cover.

How do I change the lightbulb in my high ceiling chandelier?

Gone are the days when you will need a ladder to change the lightbulb in your high ceiling chandelier. Now with the high light bulb changer or grabber, you can easily change your lightbulb in your high ceiling chandelier yourself. It has all the different ‘mouthpieces’ or suction cups that will grab your upward-facing bulbs, and replace them with a new bulb.

How do you remove the flush mount ceiling light cover?

You have to grab the cover with your two hands and gently turn anticlockwise to remove your flush mount ceiling light cover. Kindly turn off the light about 40 minutes before you try to remove the cover. Additionally, note that some flush mount covers have a screw holding them down rather than the conventional screw to lock and unlock types. Thus, you will have to unscrew it carefully while holding it up with your other hand to avoid it falling off.


Changing fluorescent in the light high ceiling is possible if you have the access platform and the new bulbs in place. In this article, we have discussed the tools you need how to change fluorescent light high ceiling. To avoid having to climb an access point almost every other day, we mentioned the benefits you can derive from using fluorescent bulbs, as they are energy efficient and last for a long while. You are advised to adhere to the safety precautions and tips talked about here.



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