If the Halogen glass bulb cover breaks, is it still safe to use the sconce fixture? What is the purpose of the Bulb cover?

1 Answer 1


Really, the purpose is to stop anyone touching it.
Halogens run hot enough to take the skin right off your fingers if you touch one whilst it's on.
If you touch it whilst it's cold, oils transferred from your fingers can cause it to explode when switched on.

In practical terms, if anyone can reach it, replace the glass or fixture [or swap the bulb to a modern LED, which run almost cold]. If it's way up in the ceiling, I'd call it optional.

  • 1
    Also, if you touch the envelope of a halogen bulb (cold) and don’t clean it properly, you’ll leave oils on the glass so that when it heats up, it will shatter! Be careful.
    – DoxyLover
    Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 18:28
  • @DoxyLover - good point, added to answer.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 18:32
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    And also to keep dust off it, because dust will catch fire in that case (say the lamp was left off for many months and accumulated that much dust) - or, the dust will have the same effect as fingerprints and crack the bulb. Why are we talking about halogens in 2022? LED that thing and don't look back. Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 19:11
  • Good answer, but I'd add that the front glass would prevent shards of the halogen bulb from falling where you don't want them (hair - feet - etc). But as noted, go LED. Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 21:05

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