Tips and tricks for fixing and cleaning a chandelier

The wiring and fittings of all of our lamps have been checked carefully. If, however, one of the lightbulbs fails to work after you installed the lamp, there is probably something wrong with the lamp fitting or the screw cap. If the lamp does not work at all, this is usually caused by the dimmer.

The Dimmer

A faulty light-bulb can cause a short-circuit and will blow the fuse in your dimmer-switch.
Make sure you always have some spare fuses of 1 or 2 ampere. You can buy them at a hardware store.

The Fitting

If a light bulb is not working (and it is not broken) the problem is usually the fitting. The light bulb does not make contact in the fitting.
These pictures show the two most common fitting systems. These systems among other types, are mostly used in small and large fittings.

In the small fitting, the semicircular brass tab has been pushed down too far. You can lift it up, using apiece of iron wire. Make sure the power is turned off!

In the large fitting, the outer tab (sometimes there are two tabs opposite each other) does not make contact with the light bulb. You can use a voltage tester (isolated screwdriver) to pull this tab slightly inwards. Do not pull too far because the bulb will push it in the opposite direction and you might cause a short circuit.


The picture shows a number of products, appropriate for cleaning a chandelier.

These blue microfiber cloths are very practical because of the smooth surface.
If the lamp is not too dirty, we use hot water and cleaning vinegar.
We usually clean the frame and the drops manually.
If the lamp is very dirty or very old, we remove the drops from the chandelier and we soak them in a solution of hot water and St. Marc or washing soda. Then we rinse them with clean hot water and dry them one by one with a tea towel.
Sometimes we spray a chandelier with a solution of St. Marc or Dasty, it works fast but you have to be very carefull, you may damage the metal or painted parts of the chandelier.
We do not clean the metal frame to intensely, for we don’t want the old patina to disappear, we just take off the grease.

But a brass Dutch chandelier will shine beautifully if you polish it with brass polish. The ones that are coated with a layer of lacquer can not be polished.

We use small cone-shaped pointed pliers and wire cutters to re-attach the drops to the chandelier.

For patinating brass pins and wire, we use a solution of hot water with a dash of ammonia and a dash of liquid bleach.
Coated brass parts and brassed steel cannot be patinated.

In this video Saskia shows how to clean a crystal chandelier.

This took place on December 30, 2014 in our store in Bussum.