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Flickering LED Lights – 10 Reasons Why Your LED Bulb Flicker And How To Stop It

April 22, 2023

Have you ever seen flickering LED light bulbs in your home? For homes that use LED bulbs, this seems to be a common problem.

Many people need help understanding why the LED Bulb Flicker has difficulty repairing these devices. Don’t worry. Keep reading our article to find out the cause and the best solutions.

Flickering LED Light

Flickering LED Lights - A common problem
Flickering LED Lights – A common problem

Flickering LED lights describe fixtures continuously on and off for a short time. The rapid switching on and off of lighting equipment has created a flicker effect.

This issue usually occurs due to incorrect control device operation, a weak energy supply, or faulty circuit design. In contrast to this phenomenon, blinking LED light bulbs are lights that blink intentionally for decorative purposes.

Unlike when you use blinking LED light bulbs to beautify the space, flickering lights will lead to discomfort. The instability of strobing lights often significantly affects your vision and feeling.

Working under this conditions for a long time will cause eyestrain and stress, making concentrating difficult. In particular, people with health problems or sensitivity to light will be more affected.

Why LED Lights Flicker?

LED Lights are more prone to flickering
LED Lights are more prone to flickering

Compared with traditional incandescent bulbs, LEDs have many outstanding advantages.

Accordingly, LED light bulbs have a longer life, do not give off much heat, and have good energy-saving capabilities. These features have made these fixtures popular in homes.

However, besides the advantages, LED Light Fixtures have a big drawback. The weakness is that they are very prone to flicker. This phenomenon is widespread, and most people who have used LEDs have encountered it.

You can observe the bulbs in your home destabilizing in two different ways. There are two main types of flickers: visible and invisible.

Visible Flicker

Visible flicker is the phenomenon of light bulbs turning on and off continuously that the naked eye can also recognize.

The light produced changes rapidly but remains within human perception. In this case, the flickering lights frequency usually ranges from 3 to 70 Hz.

This instability is often the cause of many health problems. Most people find it distracting and highly uncomfortable to work under. Headaches and eye strain are the most common symptoms after prolonged exposure tothis unsteadiness. Moreover, in these cases, flickering led lights may hurt your eyes.

In additione, this instability can also cause serious health complications for people sensitive to light. They can experience migraines, leading to seizures and loss of control.

So why do LEDs have visible flickers? Let’s go into the main reasons below.

LED driver problem

Led driver is the first aspect to consider

First, the LEDs may flicker if the driver is not working correctly.

LED drivers are devices that help light bulbs to work. The main task of this device is to control the intensity of the current so that the energy source matches the operation of the light source.

Whether you use a ceiling light or any LED light fixtures, you need the support of the drivers.

If this part encounters damage due to overload, failure due to time, or overheating, it will cause current instability. Whenever fixtures do not have a steady power supply, they will become pulsing, quickly turning on and off or even led lights not turning on

Loose wire or bad bulb connection

Next, this annoying issue in the house can result from incorrect electrical equipment installed in the circuit.

You may have needed to be more careful in connecting the bulb to the power source, making the electrical current supplied to the lamp unstable. Or loose connections between the driver and uncertain circuit can also lead to flicker.

In some cases, when you install too many LED light bulbs in a system, the connections between them may need improvement. This mistake caused the annoying lights to turn on and off.

Dimmer switch incompatibility

Old modern switch is no long compatible with LEDs

LEDs may flicker continuously if you use the wrong dimmer switches. This problem is also a common mistake of people using LEDs. There are two common instances of this error.

Maybe you utilized an outdated dimmer switch for glowing, incandescent bulbs. In any case, this one may not be the finest fit for modern LEDs because it only offers two settings: on or off. Instep, opt for a modern, widespread one that’s support to adjust the brightness of all sorts, including LED.

Second, because some people use a non-dimmable led light fixtures, the bulb will blink when linked to a dimmer switch. If the led light bulbs is incompatible with your switch, it is unlikely to shine bright or even turn on.

In some cases, a faulty light, dimmer switch may cause an annoying buzzing in light switch and some serious consequences from it. So that you need to read the manual instruction carefully before using any LED fixtures and any dimmer for them.

Low-quality bulb

Is your led light bulb at top-quality ?
Is your led light bulb at top-quality ?

Another cause is that you need to use better quality products.

Accordingly, the bulbs that do not guarantee the lighting capacity will be unstable, quickly causing problems not just flickering but even Glowing effects in LEDs

In addition, fixtures without clear voltage specifications are often more prone to damage than reputable devices. They will flash rapidly after only a short period of operation.

The surge in wattage

Wattage is one of the main factors determining LED light bulbs’ performance. There are several causes of increased output, which causes this phenomenon.

  • Increasing lighting output: Each lighting contact fixture has a fixed output power rating. The unit will be damaged if the wattage rises too high and exceeds the bulb’s limit. At that time, the light it produces is flickering, and unstable.
  • Power Supply overload: The overload that occurs when using too many electrical devices at the same time will cause the energy supply to be affected. The circuit breaker of the power supply that operates under overload will also cause light bulbs to flicker.
  • Error in thermal management: When you use the lamp at high power for a long time, LED light bulbs will generate heat. If the heat processor is not working correctly, the fixture will overheat, causing flickering lights and damage.

Voltage fluctuations

When the LED light bulbs in your home are strobing, you need to check your circuitry.

Using too many electrical devices at the same time is the cause of voltage instability. You need to turn another device on or off, and the power supply to your bulbs will change. This sudden change caused the lights not to be on continuously but to flicker.

Invisible flicker

In contrast to visible flicker, yourmay experience an invisible one. At that point, the flickering frequency is very high. LED light strobing bulbs turn on and off continuously for a brief period, unnoticeable to the human eye.

Even though you don’t see rapid turning off and back on issue, it still has consequences for your health. You won’t lose focus as quickly as when working under visible one, but you’ll still experience headaches and fatigue. Some people who are more sensitive to light experience lightheadedness or dizziness.

Power supply, PWM usage, and environmental factors are the main causes of invisible flickering lights.

Power supply

If the voltage is not maintained, the fixtures will blink even if you don’t notice it.

LEDs can light up because of the electricity you supply to the fixture. When this energy source is not stable, the operation of the bulb will be affected. If the voltage weakens, the bulb will dim or turn off and come back on when the power gets more robust.

It is essential to ensure the power supply is compatible with the fixtures or lighting system to avoid an unstable electrical current. Additionally, using a voltage regulator can help maintain a consistent energy supply, preventing fluctuations that can cause the issue.

Usage of PWM

Is your led fixture using PWM?
Is your led fixture using PWM?

Next, you can check the Pulse-Width modulation effect of your fixture.

Pulse-Width Modulation, also called contact PWM, is a technique to change the width of signal pulses but keep their frequency unchanged. Engineers use PWM to control the brightness of LED bulbs precisely. When PWM turns LEDs on and off for very short periods that are unnoticeable to humans, it creates an invisible flicker.

It is essential to use a PWM frequency higher than 200 Hz to prevent PWM-related flicker, as this is the threshold for invisible flicker. Additionally, selecting a driver specifically designed to work with PWM can help reduce the frequency of problem.

Environmental factors

Environmental factors can possibly cause led flickering
Have you ever considered environmental factors?

Finally, invisible flicker is not caused solely by the subjective operation of the device. External influences can also lead to flickering in LEDs. If the area you live in is subject to electromagnetic interference or a rapid temperature change where light bulbs are operating, the fixtures may be facing this “invisible” issue.

Electromagnetic interference (EMI) can also be a reason. EMI occurs when the electromagnetic fields generated by electronic devices interfere with the operation of other electronic devices. It can lead to flicker in LED lights and different types electronic devices.

Is LED Flickering Dangerous?

Is LED Flickering Dangerous?
Is LED Flickering Dangerous?

LED flickering will be a dangerous phenomenon for your health and property.

As mentioned above, the issue can lead to loss of concentration, eyestrain, headaches, and even convulsions. Also, under certain circumstances, flickering light bulbs can cause large fires.

The cause of these house fires is loose connections of devices to the outlet. When your electrical equipment is not properly connected to the power source, or the wires are old and frayed, they will flash.

If the right stimuli are met, they can create sparks. Accordingly, these sparks can be as hot as 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit, enough to ignite surrounding objects.

How To Stop LED Light Flickering

It will help if you take timely action when you notice the LED lights in your home are meeting this problem.

The methods of stopping the phenomenon that we cover below can be used for various LED light fixtures.

Use better drivers

The first measure that you can use is to replace your LED driver. Electrical engineering experts recommend using high-quality contact drivers to limit climax sine waves.

At that time, the energy, electrical current supplied to the device will be more stable and will not cause the issue anymore.

Address the voltage issues

Then, to avoid overload and keep the circuit’s voltage from fluctuating, you should not use too many electrical appliances. Limit the number of electrical appliances, especially high-powered ones. The energy supplied for your LED light fixtures will be stable, so the led light bulbs no longer turn on and off continuously.

High-quality Bulb Replacement

If you are using an old, broken, or poor-quality one, you can replace it. New bulbs from reputable manufacturers will give you peace of mind and comfort. Consider the best products and match your existing electrical equipment to improve lighting efficiency and avoid any harmful effects of led lights in general or flickering in particular.

Clean dust or debris in LED bulb

If a dirty or dusty fixture causes the flicker, you must clean it. You can wipe the bulb with a damp, soft cloth to make the appliance new again. However, make sure you turn off the power for safety.

Choosing compatible dimmer switches with LED lights

Compatible switch makes led fixture perfect
Compatible switch makes led fixture perfect

Next, you need to check the dimmer switch you are using. If it is incompatible, replace it. The right equipment will stop the fixture facing this issue and prolong the life of your bulbs.

Avoid using PWM for brightness control.

Finally, to avoid invisible flicker, you should not use PWM for brightness control purposes with LEDs. Instead, you can buy lights with the correct brightness from the start or use dimmer switches compatible with the bulb.


In short, flickering LED lights are not a rare phenomenon. You can easily see visible flicker LED lights or invisible bulbs in your home.

The cause of this phenomenon comes from the incompatibility of the dimmer switch, the LED driver not working correctly, the low-quality bulb, or voltage variation. For each case, you will have your solution.

To avoid flickering lights, you can replace the dimmer switch and LED driver, buy new bulbs, and stabilize the circuit.

Call a professional electrician if you have tried many things to no available. If you have carefully checked and followed Emberlight methods, but the light is still flashing rapidly. Your electrical system may have encountered complex problems that only professionals with specialized knowledge can get a desired solution.

Lexii is a marketing creative with 6 years in Event, Product, and Social media marketing. She has assisted with coordinating and managing marketing campaigns for Procter & Gamble, and assisted with growth of smaller CPG brands on a national level.

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