How to Replace a Pool Light

Pool lights can add a wonderful ambiance to your in-ground pool. Unfortunately, like all light bulbs, they will eventually burn out. The good news is that it’s possible for you to replace the light yourself, with a little knowledge.

*IMPORTANT NOTE: Remember to take extra precaution any time you are working with water and electricity. If you are unsure or unfamiliar with how to safely work with water and electricity, do not attempt to change the light by yourself and instead call a professional.

Gather supplies

You will need the following items:

  • Circuit tester
  • Replacement bulb
  • Phillips and flat head screwdrivers
  • Pool light gasket
  • Dry towels

Before getting started

  1. Most importantly: Turn off all power to your pool before you begin.
  2. Double check that the power is off by using the circuit tester to test the switch in both the on and off positions. If there is the presence of an electrical voltage, the circuit tester sensor will go off.
  3. If needed, drain the pool a bit so that the light is easy to access.

Change the bulb

  1. Remove the screw that holds the pool light housing to the side of the pool.
  2. Pry the light from its fixture. There is typically enough extra cord to reach the pool deck, so you can lay the light on one of the dry towels to protect it from being scratched.
  3. Remove the face ring, lens gasket and lens to access the light bulb. To do this, you will have to remove the screws and clamps holding them together to fully disassemble the parts in order to reach the bulb.
  4. If you notice any dirt or corrosion, use one of the towels to carefully remove any residue. If any of the screws are corroded, you will need to purchase replacements.
  5. Use a towel to carefully remove the old bulb, then dry the inside of the light fixture with one of the towels.
  6. Screw in the replacement bulb, taking care not to over-tighten. Install the new lens gasket and then reassemble the light fixture.
  7. Very briefly turn the electricity back on, to confirm that the new bulb works properly. This must be done quickly, as pool lights are not made to be turned on out of water. Important: Turn the electricity off again before proceeding.
  8. Check for leaks by placing the light underwater. Make sure there is no air coming from the sealed outer edges of the light.
  9. Replace the light and excess cord back into position, exactly as you found it. Make sure the screw holes line up properly, then replace the screws.
  10. Now that the bulb has been replaced, you can turn on the electricity to your pool and begin enjoying your well-lit pool again.

Remember, do not attempt a pool light replacement if you are unfamiliar with how to safely work with water and electricity. If you are ever unsure, err on the side of caution and call a professional.