We have a lamp in our bedroom which has a wheel switch on the power cord to turn the lamp on or off.

Recently, the lamp has been flickering if the cord wheel switch is touched. When the switch & housing are positioned correctly, the light is on and steady, but when it is twisted slightly (the housing, not the wheel) the light will either flicker or turn off entirely.

It seems like it might be a short in the connection between the switch and the cord. If so, I feel like that should be a fairly straightforward fix - disassemble the housing, fix the connection, and put the housing back together.

Is this the case? If so, how do I identify the problematic connection, and how do I fix it?

  • 1
    more likely an open circuit than a short. A short would tend to make something go BANG! (With luck, your circuit breaker) Mar 19, 2018 at 16:23

1 Answer 1


Most likely your switch is going bad or it is at the switch, but I do agree with @Martin Bonner and think if it's not that it's a loose connection. These are not that hard to find. It's the loose connection.

Good luck.

  • Good answer, except that I would add a note of caution. Depending on the wattage of the bulb, an intermittent connection at this switch could dissipate a dangerous amount of power. So, don't let this slide. Mar 19, 2018 at 19:24
  • Ok. How do I identify which connection is loose? How do I fix it once I find it?
    – Jeff
    Mar 20, 2018 at 12:54
  • Ok you look for anything that appears to be loose for lack of a better term. Look for discoloration or corrosion or insulation that is brittle or stiff. Personally I wouldn't spend a lot of time trying to troubleshoot a lamp cord. I would look for the obvious see if I could do a quick fix, if I failed to see the problem I would then replace it with another lamp cord. There are many sites online that supply lamp parts that allow you to completely rebuild a lamp. Mar 20, 2018 at 14:04

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