Saturday, August 5, 2006

Philips DuraMax Long Life Bulbs Burn Out Short

Today I helped my friend Matt with a small home improvement project. He wanted to install a new hanging light fixture above the front door.

Since the ceiling was about 16 ft (approximately 5 meters) high, we rented a 14 ft step ladder from Home Depot and installed the fixture.

light fixture 1

The three light bulbs used were Philips DuraMax Long Life bulbs.

One the box, it says "Lasts 1 year".

light fixture 2

During the first trial, all three bulbs have light up.

light fixture 3

A few minutes later, one of the bulbs burnt out.

light fixture 4
(photo darkened to show contrast)

Did I mention, these were Philips DuraMax Long Life bulbs that should last at least one year, as what was printed on the boxes?

Apparently by "one year", Philips meant "4 hours of average usage per day/7 days per week".

light fixture 5

I have always thought phone numbers with the prefix 555 are fake numbers only used in American films.

Not so.

1-800-555-0050 is the number to call if you like to leave a message for Philips.


  1. You should have used CFL Bulbs, they give out just as much light and last 3-5 years.

  2. You know, it might be the wattage of the bulb. My boyfriend doesn't like to use any bulb that is less than a 100 watt and prefers something closer to a 120. We have a light fixture that takes three bulbs rated for a max of 60 watts each and he throws 100s in and they always burn out quickly. Ok, not as quickly as your test, but even so, I bet that fixture is rated for 60 watts which may be why he was having trouble. Just my guess. I like the compact fluorescent that the other commenter suggested, too, by the way.

  3. Either get Energy saving fluorescent lamps, but make sure they fit. Mostly they are bigger than normal ones. Or get conventional lamps for industrial use (rough environment or so), they are not that bright but last much much longer.

  4. My bulbs have worked fine, but when it comes time to remove them from the socket, the glass comes out but not the aluminum part. I hve turned off the power and used a needle nose pliers to remove the bace, just to find that only part of it comes out becuase it rips off. I may have to replace fixtures. What a bargain.

  5. I had a duramax bulb flash out on me early. That and some other Philips bulbs have gone out early. I called that number and they sent me $7.

  6. I'm an Electrical Contractor..Phillips Duramax Are Crap & defective. I have had 5 customers in 3 weeks( I've been out of town for 1 week) that have had problems directly related to the R-40 reflector indoor bulbs. Burning out in less than a week & just not even working! I strongly urge you to not use these!

  7. I am an energy efficiency expert and have used Phillips light bulbs for over a decade. While their cfls. are the best in my opinion and stand up to the claim of lasting up to 7 years, the Duramax brand DOES NOT. Duramax claims to last up to 1 1/2 years, however, this will be the third time that I will have replaced these bulbs in less than 1 1/2 years (provided I stay with this brand)!!

  8. After posting my comment, I contacted the Phillips company. Much to my delight, they listened to my complaint about the Duramax product and offered me a refund. They also requested that I return the defective bulb. I was told that this was not the norm but RARE for the Duramax to burn out so quickly. As an energy efficiency expert, I appreciate top notch customer service and will continue to use and recommend Phillips light bulbs.

  9. @Jacqueline,

    Do you work for a consulting firm? Which one?