What to do when your projector lamp explodes

Inside a broken projector lamp

You turn on your projector or RPTV and after a few minutes you hear a loud pop and see smoke. Your projector lamp has just exploded.

First of all relax. Your projector lamp is in a plastic cage so most of the damage is going to be encased. It’s bang is worse that the clean-up.

Here’s what to do when the projector lamp shatters:

  • Turn the projector/RPTV off immediately. Unplug the AC cord.
  • Wait for the projector/RPTV to cool down.
  • Open a window to ventilate the room. Avoid breathing in any dust from the projector lamp.
  • Check there are no broken shards or pieces of glass around the projector lamp or coming out from the cooling air circulation vents. Check the interior of the RPTV.
  • Use rubber gloves to pick up any shards or broken bits of projector lamp sticking out. These lamps contain mercury so don’t handle any shards with bare hands. You can also try using some duct tape to pick up small shards.
  • Place the projector lamps shards in a closed container such as a box or plastic bag. This will stop the dust and mercury vapour from spreading. Don’t put the container into the regular garbage or down the drain. Send the remains to a hazardous waste facility near you.
  • Don’t attempt to clean up the inside of the projector if there is a lot of broken parts or dust. Take the projector into an authorized service station. They will clean the inside of the projector thoroughly with a mercury vacuum cleaner. Never use a regular vacuum cleaner to do this. Ask the service technician to do a thorough check of the unit paying attention to the ballast and color wheel.
  • Be sure to install an authentic projector lamp. Avoid generic compatible lamps as they are prone to exploding more often than authentic OEM lamps.
  • Learn how to spot counterfeit lamps and about the benefits of buying authentic OEM lamps from a recognized dealer.


    1 Comment

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