How to replace a halogen bulb in a track system

Updated February 21, 2017

Halogen bulbs are available in many formats. Most modern light fixtures, including track lighting, use halogen bulbs. These lights can burn extremely hot but provide targeted lighting similar to a spotlight. Halogen bulbs are available in standard base, GU10 and bipin. GU10 base has two pins, but they twist into the socket. The bipin base, known as the G9 base, consists of two pins that push into the base of the fixture.

Remove the light fixture from the track system by grasping it at its base and twisting it in a counterclockwise direction. Take note of the contact strips in the track system.

Grip the G9 base bulb with your fingers and pull straight out. Twisting this type of bulb will break the glass, causing potential injury. Insert the new bulb by aligning the pins with the socket and push it in until it seats.

Clutch the GU10 dome bulb on its edges and twist it in a counterclockwise direction. When you feel it stop, pull it straight out. Install the new bulb by aligning the pins with the slots in the socket and turning it in a clockwise direction.

Grasp the dome MR11 and MR16 bipin light bulb on its edge. Pull straight out to remove it. Twisting this bulb will break it at its base and could cause injury. Replace this bulb by lining up the pins on the new bulb with the pins in the socket and pushing it in.

Hold the double-ended halogen bulb in the middle and push it toward one of the end connections. This will release it from the other end, enabling it to be removed. Insert the new bulb by pressing it firmly against one end of the socket until the opposite end of the bulb will slip into the other end of the socket.

Insert the fixture into the track, taking note of the prongs on the fixture and the connection strips in the track. Twist the fixture in the direction that will cause the prongs on the fixture to make connection with the strips in the track.


Use a suction cup for dome light bulbs that sit below the rim of the fixture. Some track light fixtures have removable rims, making it easier to replace the bulb.


Do not handle a halogen bulb until it has had time to cool. Do not touch the glass of the bulbs with your fingers as this can weaken the strength, shortening the life of the bulb.

Things You'll Need

  • Step ladder
  • Suction cup
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About the Author

Michael Straessle has written professionally about the construction industry since 1988. He authored “What a Strange Little Man,” among other books, and his work has appeared in various online publications. Straessle earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in professional/technical writing.